Mumbai: The Videocon group has bought “some stake” in greeting cards company Archies Ltd from the open market, but there have been no formal talks on any takeover, a top official of Archies said on 3 July.
“At this moment, I would not know the exact percentage that they have taken over,” Anoop Campbell, chief financial officer, Archies, told Reuters over the telephone.
Shares in Archies rose as much as 20% after the Economic Times, quoting unnamed sources, reported that entities owned by the Dhoots, founders of the Videocon group, have picked up over 4% in Archies.
The Videocon group had sent out feelers to the Moolchandanis, Archies’ founders, for a possible buyout, but due to valuation differences have purchased the shares from the open market over the last month, the newspaper said.
“They have just bought shares from the open market, but there have been no formal talks with them about any sort of a takeover,” he said. “Not yet.”
Campbell admitted that Archies had been approached by a couple of investment houses and bankers, but said the promotors were not looking at selling a strategic stake now.
The company is expanding and looking to raise funds through debt and equity dilution, Campbell said.
Market sources feel Archies’ founders may consider divesting at the right valuation, estimated at over $100 million, according to the newspaper.
Shares in Archies have fallen almost 30% in the first half of 2008.
At the end of the March quarter, the Moolchandanis held 62.44% stake in Archies, data from the BSE showed.