Info-tech

Decks cleared for Patni sale to iGATE

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on January 25, 2011 Published on January 08, 2011

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Indications are that a formal announcement to this effect will be made early next week. The Patni board is expected to meet on Monday to consider the offer from the iGATE-led consortium, sources said. The iGATE scrip on the Nasdaq was trading down 1.2 per cent at $19.22 as of 9.00 p.m. IST.

The promoters of Patni Computer Systems are believed to have ironed out their differences with a consortium led by Nasdaq-listed iGATE.

This will clear the decks for the much delayed stake sale in the Mumbai-based outsourcing company.

Though there are varying estimates on what the deal size would be, a source privy to the deal said the consortium would pay Rs 503 a share for the 63 per cent stake in Patni. This is at a premium of Rs 43 a share to the current market price of Rs 460.1.

The total outgo for iGate and PE firm Apax Partners (the other consortium member) will be in the region of Rs 4,080 crore.

Indications are that a formal announcement to this effect will be made early next week. The Patni board is expected to meet on Monday to consider the offer from the iGATE-led consortium, sources said. The iGATE scrip on the Nasdaq was trading down 1.2 per cent at $19.22 as of 9.00 p.m. IST.

It may be recalled that the transaction was delayed due to differences over the payment of a non-compete fee to Patni's promoters and other taxation-related issues.

“Almost all issues that were holding up the transaction have been resolved and the deal was inked late on Thursday night. It is now just a question of following the regulatory procedures before a formal announcement is made,” an official said.

A spokesperson for iGATE refused comment on the development. Likewise, the Patni spokesperson said her company would not comment on what it termed ‘market speculation'.

In the last three to four years, rumours of the Patni brothers and PE firm General Atlantic (which collectively hold 63 per stake) selling out have surfaced time and again. Players such as Larsen & Toubro, IBM, NTT and Fujitsu have been linked as potential suitors from time to time.

However, this time around the race had narrowed down to two bidders: a consortium of private equity funds Carlyle and Advent, and former Wipro Vice-Chairman Mr Vivek Paul; and a rival grouping comprising Mr Phaneesh Murthy of iGATE and PE Apax Partners.

The Patni deal is expected to catapult the Nasdaq-listed iGATE into the league of companies with over $1 billion in annual revenues, thereby enabling it to compete more effectively with industry leaders like Tata Conusltancy Services, Infosys and Wipro.

> adith@thehindu.co.in

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Published on January 08, 2011
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