New Delhi: India is considering selling up to 15% of state-run Engineers India Ltd, the engineering and consultancy firm’s chairman said on Thursday, a deal worth over $190 million at current market prices.
Sales of shares in state-run firms has returned to the Union government’s agenda after it was re-elected earlier this year. The government has plans to sell its holdings in six to seven firms over the next 12 months.
Two state firms have already raised over $1.8 billion through initial share sales in August and September.
Shares in the engineering and consultancy firm rose over 12% after the comments, before retreating to end the day 5.34% up at Rs164.90.
Chairman Mukesh Rohatgi said the government was considering the sale, but could not say when the actual process would happen.
“There has been some talk on it, that the government has some plans,” he told Reuters on the sidelines of a conference. “Ten to 15% is what everybody is talking about.”
Separately, an official of Steel Authority of India Ltd said the government was mulling a follow on public offer in the country’s largest steelmaker.
Rohatgi said the firm would see similar profit growth as the 35-40% rise it had had in the last few fiscal years.
“The Indian hydrocarbon industry has not put on hold projects, unlike such projects worldwide,” he said. “That is the major reason we have not been affected.”
The biggest portion of Engineers India’s revenue comes from contracts executed for oil and gas firms.
The firm’s order book stood at around Rs7,300 crore, but when asked if it could cross Rs10,000 crore by the end of the fiscal year in March, Rohatgi said it was unlikely.