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Woodbriar Group

has interests in plantations, insurance services and real estate. The Group's gardens are spread across Tamil Nadu and Kerala.

Canara Bank

, Madurai Circle, has funded the debt component to Woodbriar Group for this acquisition.

Mumbai, March 2

Hindustan Lever Ltd (HLL) said it has transferred its entire shareholding in its 100 per cent subsidiary, Tea Estates India Ltd (TEIL) to Maxwell Golden Tea Private Ltd (MGT), a Woodbriar Group company on March 1.

TEIL owns eight tea estates and six factories for processing tea in Tamil Nadu with an average annual output of approximately 10,500 metric tonnes.

Woodbriar Group has interests in plantations, insurance services and real estate. The Group's gardens are spread across Tamil Nadu and Kerala.

"HLL management believes that the proposed transfer to Woodbriar Group is in the best interest of the tea plantation business and all its stakeholders. Existing terms and conditions of services of all TEIL employees will be fully protected in accordance with applicable laws and terms of their employment," the company said in a news release.

For Woodbriar Group, this acquisition will provide scale and bring in synergy benefits as a large portion of TEIL gardens are contiguous to its existing tea gardens. Canara Bank, Madurai Circle, has funded the debt component to Woodbriar Group for this acquisition.

Completing exit

With this disposal of shareholding in TEIL, HLL has completed its exit from its tea plantations business both in south India and Assam. It may be recalled that HLL had sold its interests in Rossell Industries Ltd and Doom Dooma Tea Company Ltd in Assam during the last 12 months.

DSP Merrill Lynch Ltd acted as financial advisor to HLL.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated March 3, 2006)
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