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Anil Ambani to raise stake in Reliance Infra via creeping acquisition

A day after it announced an investment of Rs 400 crore in Reliance Infrastructure (RInfra), the family of Anil Ambani is likely to make a tender offer in RInfra via the creeping acquisition route and invest another Rs 500 crore.

Creeping acquisitions refer to the purchase of company shares by its investors (usually, promoters or shareholders with significant holdings) over a number of small transactions, so as to increase the investors’ stake in the company by an economically significant amount without requiring any disclosure or other action by the investors.

According to the markets regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India’s (Sebi’s) guidelines, a tender offer is mandatory when a promoter’s stake brea­ches the 25-per cent threshold.

The preferential issue announced on Sunday will raise the Anil Ambani family’s stake to 22 per cent, from the current 5 per cent – just short of the 25-per cent mark.

According to a banking source, the tender offer will be at the same price of Rs 62. This is also the preferential offer price the promoters and Varde Partners will subscribe to.

The offer will be made for another 25 per cent in the company, in accordance with Sebi guidelines. The family may partner Varde for the tender offer, added a source.

When contacted, a spokesperson for the company withheld comment till the time of going to press. On Sunday, the RInfra board had announced that the Anil Ambani family and Varde would invest Rs 550 crore in RInfra. Of this, Värde would invest Rs 150 crore, and Anil Ambani the rest.

Varde will hold 7 per cent stake in RInfra after the preferential allotment. RInfra currently has 800,000 retail shareholders who can participate in the open offer. On Monday, RInfra closed at Rs 73 a share — up 5 per cent. Business Standard News

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