Money & Banking

Fairfax India offers ₹1,200 cr for 51% stake in Catholic Syrian Bank

Our Bureau Kochi | Updated on February 19, 2018 Published on February 19, 2018

At ₹140 per share, the current offer is lower than the earlier one

Canada-based Fairfax India Holdings Corporation has proposed to buy stake in Catholic Syrian Bank, one of the oldest private sector banks in Kerala, for around ₹1,200 crore.

According to CSB officials, Fairfax has formally indicated its continued interest in investing 51 per cent in the share capital at a mutually agreed price of ₹140 per share. The investment is subject to customary closing conditions, such as completion of required legal documentation and receipt of all applicable board, shareholder and regulatory approvals, including the approval of the Reserve Bank of India and the Competition Commission of India.

Fairfax India is a Canadian investment holding company that invests in public and private equity securities and debt instruments in India and Indian businesses or other businesses with customers, suppliers or business primarily conducted in, or dependent on, India.

However, it is pointed out that the present valuation is 25 per cent lower than the rates the bank was earlier demanding. It may be recalled that Fairfax’s earlier offer in CSB could not materialise following the demand for higher valuations. And, a year later, the Canadian firm has come back with an offer of ₹140/share, which is much lower than the earlier proposal.

Will give a boost

TS Anantharaman, Chairman, Catholic Syrian Bank, said that the bank had taken various initiatives in the past few years to reinvent itself in the highly competitive banking space and sees the Fairfax India investment giving a substantial boost to these efforts. The fresh capital infusion will pave way for the next stage of development and offer the bank a very exciting future, he said.

Established in 1920, CSB is one of the oldest private sector banks with a significant presence in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Maharashtra.

Published on February 19, 2018
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