Economy & Market
PE Asia to invest $260 mn in Lafarge
Baring Private Equity Asia is taking a 14 per cent stake in the India unit of Lafarge, which would be the largest PE investment in the sector. Lafarge said it had signed an agreement to raise Rs 1,427 crore through the capital increase subscribed by Baring PE and representing a 14 per cent minority stake in its Indian subsidiary. "This transaction, subject to the approval of local regulatory authorities, will accelerate Lafarge's growth plans in India in all its product lines-cement, aggregates and concrete, said a company statement. The debt-ridden parent company, Lafarge, has been struggling to reduce its debt of £12.2 billion. As the parent company is unable to fund the expansion of its India unit, the company has opted for equity dilution to raise funds. Other PE investors in the race for the Lafarge India stake were the Singapore government-owned Temasek and Carlyle. Other top PE deals in the sector have been Credit Suisse PE's $32-million investment in Binani Cement, JP Morgan Partners' $27-million deal with Binani Cement.