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GIP eyes up to $1 billion corpus for India-focused infra fund

New York-based infrastructure fund manager Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP) has initiated talks to raise an India-focused infrastructure fund with a targeted corpus of as much as $1 billion; Mint reported citing two people aware of the development. The fund will largely focus on acquiring operating assets in areas such as roads, renewables and transmission but could also look to invest in other infrastructure assets. Besides buyout deals, the group will look to assist global infrastructure developers and operators willing to set up shop in India to de-risk their equity exposure. GIP will also explore investment opportunities in infrastructure projects such as airports, fibre optic networks and data centres for 5G roll out. GIP entered India last year after acquiring the infrastructure investment platform of IDFC Alternatives. Prior to the acquisition, IDFC Alternatives had raised two infrastructure funds—India Infrastructure Fund and India Infrastructure Fund II—aggregating $1.8 billion. A formal fund-raising process will start once the firm completes the ongoing sale of IDFC’s roads platform Highway Concessions One, among significant assets currently owned by the India funds.

Manipal’s dream of a pan-India footprint comes to a halt as Medanta talks fail

Manipal group’s ambition to have a pan-India footprint in healthcare has come to a halt for the second time with discussions to acquire Medanta hospitals ending in failure, Mint reported citing two people aware of the matter. Manipal hospitals, backed by US private equity investor TPG Capital, had entered into negotiations with heart surgeon Naresh Trehan and other investors in October 2018 to acquire their stake in Medanta, after Malaysia’s IHH healthcare outbid Manipal to buy Fortis Healthcare Ltd. However, nearly a year after, the discussions have been called off as Manipal could not raise the money for the 5,800 crore deal and there was valuation mismatch with the two strong investors who were keen to fund them. The TPG-Manipal combine started exploratory talks with the owners of Medanta in October to buy a majority stake in the hospital chain. The Manipal Group was looking to acquire the group which runs hospitals in Gurugram, Patna and Indore, and is also in the process of adding over 2,000 beds in Noida, Patna and Lucknow. Trehan, his family and associates own 55% stake in Medanta. Private equity fund Carlyle owns 27%, while Singapore’s Temasek holds 18% in both Medanta and Manipal.

Prestige Group looks to list commercial office portfolio

Prestige Group plans to tap the public market, through a real estate investment trust (REIT) of its commercial office portfolio after about a year, encouraged by the investor response to India’s first-ever REIT since its listing in March, Mint reported citing Prestige chief executive Venkat K. Narayana. It may also later launch a REIT for its retail assets or shopping malls. Bengaluru-based Prestige Group currently has 11 million sq ft of ready and rent yielding assets and nearly 15 million sq ft of under-construction office assets across south India.It also plans to launch projects in Mumbai and National Capital Region (NCR) as part of its strategy to enter new geographies.“Our office portfolio will gain a significant size in the next 3-4 quarters and tapping the public market through a REIT is the viable option," said Narayana.

Coffee Day may restart stake sale talks with Coke

The promoters of the Coffee Day Group plan to restart talks with Coca-Cola for selling a chunk of their stake in the Café Coffee Day (CCD) chain in a bid to cut the group’s debt further, The Economic Times reported citing people with knowledge of the matter. The late VG Siddhartha, the founder of Coffee Day Group, had been in talks with the beverage giant as of June last week. The negotiations stalled as Coca-Cola was keen on buying a controlling stake in the firm that runs 1,750 CCD outlets in the country while Siddhartha was looking at divesting only a minority stake and wanted to retain control. The late entrepreneur was seeking a valuation of between 8,000 crore and 10,000 crore. The latest move follows CDEL signing an agreement with the world’s largest alternative asset manager Blackstone Group to sell software technology park Global Village Tech Park in Bengaluru for about 3,000 crore. Separately, CDEL subsidiary Sical Logistics is also working on the divestment of certain assets, the proceeds of which will pare debt.

RedDoorz gets $70M in fresh round of funding

RedDoorz, the hotel management and booking platform founded by two former MakeMyTrip senior executives, has raised $70 million in its latest round of funding, led by Asia Partners, Rakuten Capital and Mirae Asset Naver Asia Growth Fund, The Economic Times reported. The investment is part of a larger Series-C round and while company executives declined to specify the exact size of the ongoing capital raising round, it is expected to cross $100 million. The latest capital infusion also comes about a month after RedDoorz raised $45 million in its Series-B round that was led by Chinese investment firm Qiming Venture Partners in July. The latest set of investors have invested more than $60 million in the latest round, with two of its existing institutional backers - International Finance Corp, the private investment arm of the World Bank, and Qiming Ventures - putting in the rest. Till date, the company has raised about $140 million in equity financing. Singapore-based RedDoorz, which competes with the likes of SoftBank-backed Oyo Hotels & Homes and Zen Rooms in the lucrative South East Asian market, was founded by Amit Saberwal and Asheesh Saxena in 2015, and operates across Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam, apart from its home market.

MPower Financing raises $100M in debt from Goldman Sachs

MPower Financing has raised $100 million (about 711 crore) in debt from Goldman Sachs as the education loans provider aims to broaden its reach to students looking to study in the US and Canada, The Economic Times reported. MPower has now raised an estimated $200 million in loan financing capital, having raised $100 million from Community Investment Management in December last year. It had also raised an undisclosed sum in an equity financing round led by Gray Matters Capital, among others. “This will be used to fund our loans portfolio. The long-term goal is to significantly increase our performance in India," Ashwini Kumar, head of India operations at MPower Financing, told ET. Kumar said at present, India is 25% of MPower's total book. MPower is expanding its marketing team and entering into strategic partnerships. The company helps students build their credit histories and provides them with personal finance education and career support, post school.

PE firms in race to acquire emids Technologies

A bunch of private equity firms, including home grown funds Everstone Capital and ChrysCapital Advisors, and global funds such as KKR & Co and Baring Private Equity Asia are in separate talks to buy a controlling stake in Nashville-based healthcare IT services firm emids Technologies in a deal worth $200-225 million, The Economic Times reported citing Multiple people aware of the development. Through the proposed deal, both promoters and existing US-based PE investors—Baird Capital, Council Capital and Union Grove Venture Partners — will sell their stakes. At present, the three PE funds hold together about 65% stake, promoters hold 23% and the rest of the stake is held by friends and employees. In this proposed deal, promoters are likely to hold about 10% stake in the company. emids Technologies provides Healthcare Information Technology and BPO services to the healthcare industry. Investment bank Credit Suisse is running a formal process to find a buyer.

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