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Warburg Pincus sells part stake in GACL

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Our Bureau

Mumbai, Dec. 19

TWO bulk deals in the shares of Gujarat Ambuja Cements Ltd on the BSE in which 5.8 per cent equity stake in the company changed hands, led to rumours that a large global cement player might be trying to get a foothold in the company.

Company officials brushed off these rumours, but said the sellers would have made a two-to-three fold gain on their investments that were made in 2001.

One of the sellers was Elm International, an affiliate of Warburg Pincus, which sold over 1.9 crore shares; it had 4.09 crore shares in the company as on September 30, 2005. The other seller was Affinity Investments, which sold all of its six crore shares in the company.

Both the deals were done at Rs 82 a share. These investors had bought their shares in 2001 at Rs 200 a share, said GACL sources; since then the GACL stock's face value has also changed, to Rs 2 a share.

The buyers were Capital Income Builder that acquired 5.6 crore shares, and T Rowe Price International, which acquired 2.21 crore shares.

As on September 30, FIIs held 30.29 per cent stake in GACL. The total foreign shareholding in the company was 43.3 per cent.

The GACL stock gained slightly over the day, closing at Rs 81.65, up from Friday's closing price of Rs 80.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated December 20, 2005)
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