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Bharti’s Cedar Set To Exit Future Retail In Rs 900 Crore Deal

Cedar currently holds about 3.19 percent stake in Future Retail.Future Group will get about Rs 400 to Rs 450 crore from Bharti via a claw-back provision and the money will be used to reduce the company’s debt or aid acquisitions, sources said.The sale is likely to happen over the next 4-8 weeks.
Bharti Group entity Cedar Support Services is in talks with foreign and domestic private equity to sell its complete stake in Kishore Biyani-led Future Retail for Rs 850 to 900 crore, multiple sources told CNBC-TV18.

Cedar currently holds about 3.19 percent stake in Future Retail after it sold a 6 percent stake in the company to PremjiInvest, the family investment arm of Wipro Chairman Azim Premji, for about Rs 1,700 crore in June.

Future Group will get about Rs 400 to Rs 450 crore from Bharti via a claw-back provision and the money will be used to reduce the company’s debt or aid acquisitions, sources said.

The sale is likely to happen over the next 4-8 weeks.

Global players like Amazon, Paytm and Google have been looking to buy about 10 percent in Future Retail and sources said, the Bharti transaction will happen only after a larger stake sale by Future Retail to a foreign player.

The deal comes at a time when Biyani is trying to shore up funds as the domestic e-commerce battle heats up.

The Indian retail landscape has changed drastically over the last years with the entry of global players such as Amazon and Walmart.

US retail behemoth Walmart has invested $16 billion in homegrown e-commerce startup Flipkart, valuing it at $21 billion.

And the speculation is rife that billionaire Jeff Bezos-led Amazon will also ramp up its India investment to $7 billion from earlier $5 billion.

Future Retail, the operator of Big Bazaar hyper and supermarket chain, is India’s retail pioneer. Biyani told  that he was looking to sell at least 10 percent stake in the company to a global retailer.

Shares in Future Retail were up 1.3 percent to Rs 567 at 11 am on the Bombay Stock Exchange. – CNBC Tv18

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