BRNL to sell stake in Odisha toll road project to CDPQ arm

Our Bureau. Kolkata | Updated on January 21, 2021

Bharat Road Network Ltd (BRNL), along with its partners, has signed an agreement with India Highway Concession Trust for the sale of a BOT road project in Odisha. BRNL is currently the largest shareholder in the project, with a 40 per cent stake.

India Highway Concession Trust is an infrastructure investment trust set up by Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), a global institutional investor.

The share purchase agreement provides for the complete transfer of ownership of Shree Jagannath Expressway Private Ltd, the special purpose vehicle engaged in the development, operation and maintenance of a 67-km toll road project from Bhubaneswar to Chandikhole. Project operations started in December 2011, with an initial 26-year concession. The sale would allow BRNL to reduce the debt and also to utilise the proceeds for organic and inorganic growth, said a press statement issued by the company. The asset would be the first of a new CDPQ-owned platform dedicated to road infrastructure in the country.

The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals and other closing conditions.

“The transaction is expected to help BRNL reduce its debt and provide the company with funds for reinvesting in its existing assets under construction,” Bajrang Kumar Choudhary, Managing Director, BRNL said in the release.

With a marked recovery in commercial traffic on Indian highways to pre-pandemic levels, the deal signals the renewed focus on M&A activities in the roads sector.

Published on January 21, 2021

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