April 2008
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Berger acquires Polish Co for $38 mn

Berger Paints India Ltd on Tuesday said it has signed an agreement to acquire Poland-based Bolix S A (Bolix) for 38 million dollars. Berger Paints will acquire Bolix, a leading provider of external insulation finishing system, in an all-share deal from Advent International, a global private equity group. The acquisition will be carried out at an estimated net purchase price of around 38.6 million dollars, the company said. The buyout will be made through a wholly-owned subsidiary of Berger Paints India Ltd in Cyprus. […]

Essar acquires strategic stake in Obopay Inc

Essar Communications Holdings Limited (ECHL), the telecom subsidiary of Essar Global Limited, has acquired a strategic stake in Obopay Inc., the pioneering service provider for payments via mobile phones. Consequent to this, K B Rajendran, Senior Vice President – Business Development, Essar has been elected to the Obopay Board of Directors. Commenting on the investment K B Rajendran said, “We are excited with our investment in Obopay which gives us an opportunity to be involved in this promising business segment. Obopay has introduced significant mobile payment innovations in the U.S. and recently in India as well. We look forward to working with Obopay to build upon the integration of the mobile phone into the lives of consumers worldwide.” Obopay, Inc. recently announced closing of its fourth round of venture funding, raising $20 million, and the addition of two new board members K B Rajendran, Senior Vice President, Essar Global Limited and Robert G. Hottensen, Jr., Senior Vice President for Public Equity at Olayan America Corporation to their board of directors. […]

Warburg Pincus to invest $75mn in Unique

Global private equity biggie, Warburg Pincus, will invest $ 75 million (Rs 300 crore) in Jaipur-based Mannat Group company, Unique Affordable Homes, to build affordable housing projects in North and Western India. Warburg Pincus will provide an initial equity line of up to $ 75 million to the venture. Unique Builders has completed nine real estate projects comprising four residential and five commercial projects mostly in Rajasthan. With a large land bank in Jaipur and its surrounding areas, the group has imminent plans to launch mega projects in the residential, corporate/commercial and township sectors. […]

Red Fort to invest Rs 3,500 crore

Red Fort Capital, an international private equity fund, is planning to invest Rs 3,500 crore in the country's real estate sector during the next one year. It has also launched a domestic fund few weeks back through which it plans to raise Rs 1,000 crore. The proceeds would be deployed into non-foreign direct investment projects. The first closing of the 6-year domestic fund would be in May, 2008. From the Rs 3,500 crore raised through the international fund, the company has committed Rs 1,100 crore for several projects. It has allocated 50% amount towards residential projects and 10-15% each for logistics, commercial office space and smaller ITITES parks. […]

Infrastructure, realty reel in some big bucks

Data from Grant Thornton reveal that of the $19.03 billion worth of private equity deals done in India in 2007, $6.76 billion or 35.5% was accounted for by the real estate infrastructure sector. On Monday, Deutsche Bank, announcing the India launch of RREEF Alternative Investments (RAI), its global asset management platform for investing in real estate, infrastructure and private equity funds, also said it is committed to investing $1 billion in Indian real estate and infrastructure sectors over the next three years. Meanwhile, local player Axis Private Equity announced the first closure of its Axis Infrastructure Fund at Rs 600 crore ($150 million), saying that the eventual target will be Rs 2,000-2,400 crore ($500-600 million). Then there was Blackstone, which manages real estate assets worth $132 billion globally, which announced its first real estate deal in India. […]

IFC, KfW set up $1bn MFI fund

International Finance Corporation (IFC) and German development bank KfW have announced the Microfinance Initiative for Asia (MIFA) to commit up to $1 billion through debt and equity investments, structured finance and advisory services to support microfinance institutions (MFIs). The initiative is slated to start in India this year. It will involve leveraging existing investment vehicles to provide equity and long-term local currency debt through partial guarantees, and developing new investment vehicles in markets with less access to capital markets. […]

Kotak Realty to float Rs 200-cr JV with DRS

Kotak Realty Fund is looking to invest close to Rs 200 crore in setting up a joint venture (JV) company with the DRS Group, a third-party logistics (3PL) company based out of New Delhi. The new entity, DRS Warehousing (South), will build and operate almost six warehouses in the southern region of India. “This is a special purpose vehicle (SPV) that we have formed for warehouse construction and management,” said a senior DRS Group official requesting anonymity. The DRS Group is expected to have a 25% stake in the JV, while Kotak Realty Fund will hold the majority. According to sources close to the development, each warehouse will more than 2,00,000 sq feet and four warehouses will be completed before December, 2008. […]