IFCI is hopeful of offloading a portion of its holding in the National Stock Exchange (NSE) in next three months, its Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer Malay Mukherjee has said.

This optimism stems from the fact that this Government company had recently roped in a new merchant banker - IDFC Securities - to find a buyer for partial stake sale in NSE, which is the country’s largest bourse by profits.

“We are looking to offload 2.5 per cent stake - the same as in the process tried last year. We are now ready to part even 2 per cent stake if we get a good price”, Mukherjee told Business Line here.

Mukherjee said that IFCI already had a non-binding offer before it and expressed confidence of completing the stake sale this time around.

IFCI board had in April last year given its in-principle nod for 2.5 per cent stake sale in IFCI. PricewaterhouseCoopers was roped in to manage the stake sale process.

However, the stake sale did not happen as IFCI was not happy with the price offered to it.

IFCI has now gone in for a new merchant banker as the time period that was available to PwC to find a buyer had lapsed, Mukherjee said when asked why the merchant banker was being changed.

IFCI had initially held 12.44 per cent stake in NSE. Of this, about 7 per cent stake was sold in 2007 to Goldman Sachs Group Inc, NYSE Group Inc, General Atlantic LLC and Softbank Asian Infrastructure Fund.

IFCI now directly holds about 5.5 per cent stake in NSE. Stock Holding Corporation, now a subsidiary of IFCI, directly holds another 5 per cent.