McLeod Russel, world’s largest tea producer, has finalised sale of eight tea estates to MK Shah Exports Ltd for a consideration of nearly ₹331 crore, according to a stock market disclosure.

McLeod sold 90 million kg from its 52 gardens in India, in the last fiscal. The eight estates now stands sold have a combined capacity to produce 9.79 million kg.

According to Kamal Baheti, Wholetime Director of McLeod, the company is open to sell more gardens to reduce debt burden to less than half from the existing ₹1,000 crore.

“We would like to bring down our debt by ₹500-600 crore. This deal is giving us close to ₹331 crore, so we might look at selling some more estates," he said.

According to Himanshu Shah, Chairman, MK Shah Exports, the acquisition will help the company achieve a “bigger scale” in production of orthodox tea.

“We are into orthodox tea manufacturing and for the past two decades we have done several R&D in improving productivity and yield of tea estates. We have expertise in turning around tea estates," Shah told BusinessLine .

The process of acquisition should be complete in the next four-five weeks, he said.

According to the press release, the eight gardens are Beesakopie, Raidang, Daimukhia, Samdang, Baghjan, Bordubi, Koomsong and Phillobari.