Mumbai: The infrastructure sector drove private equity (PE) and venture capital (VC) investments in India in October, forming 43% of the overall deals worth $3.3 billion, said a report by the Indian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association and consulting firm EY.

Even though October investments were on a par with the same month last year, infrastructure deals, at $1.4 billion, jumped to 43% of overall deals from 6% a year earlier.

Despite a slower October, 2019 continues to be a marquee year for PE/VC investments with the January-October period witnessing investments worth $43.7 billion, 16.5% more than the $37.5 billion investments received in the whole of 2018.

The largest infrastructure deal in October saw Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, Public Sector Pension Investment Board and National Investment and Infrastructure Fund invest $1.1 billion in GVK Airport Holdings Ltd, contributed to one-third of deal making by value during the month.

Besides infrastructure, financial services at $832 million and technology, at $278 million, were the other two large contributors to PE/VC investments.

(Graphic: Sarvesh Kumar Sharma/Mint)
(Graphic: Sarvesh Kumar Sharma/Mint)

Overall, there were 91 deals in October, 42% higher on a year-on-year basis. There were five large deals (of value greater than $100 million) worth $2.2 billion compared to seven large deals worth $2.7 billion in October 2018.

In terms of deal types, growth transactions were most preferred as $1.7 billion flowed to 16 such deals, 12% lower than $1.9 billion in October 2018. This was followed by start-up investments worth $717 million across 64 deals, compared to $281 million across 33 deals and buyouts at $500 million across five deals versus $941 million across five deals, on a year-on-year basis.

The exits, however, were slower as the month saw 14 PE/VC exits worth $960 million, 30% lower than the value of exits recorded in October 2018 at $1.4 billion.

Open market exits dominated in October with $878 million worth exits across eight deals, accounting for 91% of total exits by value. The largest exit during the month was Fairfax’s 9.9% stake sale in ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company Ltd in the open market for $732 million. There was no PE-backed initial public offering in October 2019, which dragged down the exit numbers.