SAIL expects $778 million from share sale

SAIL expects $778 million from share sale

New Delhi: State-run Steel Authority of India (SAIL) expects to raise around Rs3,500 crore ($778 million) from a share sale, its chairman said on Saturday, adding he expected steel production and sales during the current quarter to be higher than a year earlier.

SAIL’s board is meeting on Monday to finalize its regulatory filing and the exact dates to launch the share sale, which is tentatively scheduled to open on 14 June and close on 17 June.

“That is the time schedule as of now. But we have to discuss various options in the board and then take a final view," SAIL chairman C. S. Verma told Reuters in an interview.

When asked how much SAIL expects to raise from the share sale, Verma said: “Could be in the range of Rs3,500 crore plus minus, depending upon the (offer) pricing."

That could mean the total proceeds from the share sale would be about Rs7,000 crore, with half of it going to the Indian government that is selling 5% of its holding in SAIL as part of a plan to shed stakes in roughly 60 state-run companies over the next few years.

SAIL will issue new shares equal to 5% of its existing share capital in the follow-on public offer (FPO).

SAIL, India’s largest domestic steelmaker with an annual capacity of 14 million tonnes, produced 3 million tonnes of steel during the April-June quarter last year and sold 2.3 million tonnes.

“As far as production and sales is concerned it should be better than the first quarter of last year," Verma said of the current quarter, which is the company’s fiscal first quarter.