Idea Cellular Ltd., the Indian mobile-phone operator owned by the Aditya Birla Group, Citigroup Inc. and Providence Equity Partners Inc. plans to raise as much as Rs. 21.25 billion ($479 million) in its first stock sale.
The shares will be sold for Rs . 65 to Rs. 75 each from Feb. 12 to 15, the company said in an e-mailed statement last week. Idea Cellular also said it placed a Rs. 3.75 billion rupee-stake at the “top end” of the price range with some founders, directors and high net-worth individuals.
Idea’s initial offering aims to tap increased interest from investors in India, the world’s fastest growing cellular market, as Vodafone Group Plc, Orascom Telecom Holding SAE and Indian billionaire, Anil Ambani prepare bids to acquire Hutchison Essar Ltd., India’s fourth-largest operator. Idea has 8 percent share of a market where less than one in seven people own a cellphone.
The company plans to keep aside shares worth Rs. 500 million of the proposed public offering for employees. The so- called green shoe or over-allotment option of not more than Rs. 3.19 billion would be in addition to the proposed Rs. 21.25 billion equity offering, Idea Cellular said on Jan. 25.