3i Infotech in talks to sell IMS unit to SIFL for Rs300 crore
Mumbai: Mid-sized domestic information technology (IT) services company 3i Infotech Ltd is in advanced talks to sell its IT infrastructure management services (IMS) division to Kolkata-based Srei Infrastructure Finance Ltd (SIFL) in a deal valued at Rs300 crore, two people aware of the discussions told Mint.
“The transaction is currently at the due-diligence stage and is likely to close in the coming weeks,” said one of the two persons, both of whom did not want to be identified.
“The proceeds from the sale will go towards paring debt,” said the second person cited above.
“We always explore opportunities to grow our businesses across the infrastructure sector both organically and through acquisitions. However, we do not comment on market speculation,” said Sunil Kanoria, vice-chairman, SIFL, responding to a Mint query.
The Kanoria Foundation, a trust entity founded by SIFL promoters also owns Xenolith Technologies Pvt. Ltd, a software services company.
An email sent to 3i Infotech remained unanswered till the time of going to press.
Founded in 1993 as a back office support division of ICICI Bank, 3i Infotech (then known as ICICI Infotech) quickly rose to become one of the top mid-cap players in the IT and BFSI (banking, financial services and insurance) space in India and went public in 2005.
However, in 2012, the company approached lenders for corporate debt restructuring (CDR).
In June this year, lenders approved a restructuring of the company’s debt for the second time by waiving all unpaid interest dues from 1 April 2014 till 31 March 2016. In addition, lenders also approved the conversion of 35% of the company’s debt into non-convertible redeemable preference shares. Further, the lenders approved the conversion of 40% of the debt into equity shares of the company and retention of the balance 25% debt with an elongated repayment schedule and revised interest rate.
In July, 3i Infotech said in a filing to the exchanges that it had lost a portion of its service contract with ICICI Bank, one of its largest customers.
It added it would take“all necessary steps to ensure that discontinuation of the said contracts by ICICI Bank does not have any material impact on the business operations and profitability of the company”.
“ICICI Bank was the largest customer of the company’s infrastructure management services and the decision to sell the division is closely linked to the bank’s decision to not renew the service contracts,” said the people cited earlier.
In 2011, 3i Infotech sold its US-based global billing and payments unit to Cerberus Capital Management LP. In December 2014, it sold two of its units—3i Infotech (Western Europe) Ltd and 3i Infotech (Flagship-UK) Ltd—to Objectway Financial Software SpA.