India Equity Partners eyeing buyout of small firms

February 9th, 2009 - 8:17 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, Feb 9 (IANS) Private equity firm India Equity Partners is in talks with cash-strapped business houses to buy out some of their smaller group companies, a top company official said here Monday.

Co-founder and managing director Gaurav Mathur said several business, which are finding it increasingly difficult to raise funds for core operations, are now willing to sell off majority stake in some group companies.

“This is a new development because of the liquidity crunch. Now even large business houses are approaching private equity players to divest 51 percent or more of their holdings in small group outfits as they are not getting bank finance these days,” Mathur told reporters on the sidelines of a seminar on private equity funding.

He, however, refused to name the business houses.

India Equity Partners has so far raised $2.1 billion for investing in the Indian market, Mathur said, adding that of this, $1.4 billion has already been committed.

“We are currently sitting on about $800 million cash and looking for right investment avenues,” he said.

At present, the fund is focussing on sectors such as education, specialised healthcare services like clinics and nursing homes and waste management services, Mathur said.

India Equity Partners has exposure in companies such as auto component manufacturer Amtek India, telecom infrastructure firm Bharti Infratel and steel maker Jai Balaji Industries.

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