Cairn asserts it has no differences with the govt or ONGC

New Delhi: Cairn Energy Plc today said it has no differences with the oil ministry or with partner Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) on sale of a majority stake in its Indian arm, for which it is seeking all necessary approvals and expects to close the deal by year-end or early 2011, reports PTI.

"It makes good copy (to highlight differences between Cairn Energy and the government or ONGC). But believe me there are no differences," Cairn Energy Plc chief executive Bill Gammell said here today.

He said he expects Cairn to sell the majority stake in Cairn India to London-listed Vedanta Resources and close the deal by year-end or early next year.

"We are seeking all necessary approvals... and are working with the government and our partner ONGC (on the issue)," he added.

ONGC has a 30% interest in the 6.5 billion barrel Rajasthan fields, the centrepiece of the Cairn-Vedanta deal

Vedanta Resources Group is yet to get the Securities and Exchange Board of India's (SEBI) approval for an open offer to acquire up to a 20% stake from minority shareholders at a price of Rs355 a share, Rs50 less than what it is paying Cairn Energy for a majority stake.

The open offer, as per the schedule announced by Vedanta last month, is to open on 11th October.


Microsec’s IPO does not appear attractive

The company does not have a pan-India presence; it faces well-entrenched competitors and it operates a business fraught with risk 

Kolkata-based financial service provider Microsec Financial Services Ltd (MFSL) is entering the primary market through a 100% book-building issue. The IPO opens on 17th September and closes on 21st September.

The price band is at Rs113-Rs118 per share. The company is expecting to mop up Rs141.25 crore at the lower end and Rs147.50 crore at the upper end of the price band. A total of 1.25 crore shares will be issued.

Qualified Institutional Buyers (QIBs) will be allocated 62.50 lakh shares, out of which 5% (3.12 lakh shares) will be allocated to mutual funds. Retail investors will be allotted 43.75 lakh shares. Rating agency CRISIL has assigned an 'IPO Grade 2' to the issue, which indicates 'Below Average Fundamentals'.

MFSL's business primarily comprises granting loans against shares. That makes the company extremely vulnerable to fluctuations in the markets.

The company has a total of 239 branches across 16 states, and 178 of them are situated in West Bengal. It operates in a fiercely competitive broking and investment banking environment.

MFSL plans to use the proceeds of the IPO to expand its financing business (where it will invest Rs113 crore); expand the domestic operations of its subsidiary Microsec Capital Limited by adding 30 new branches (proposed investment Rs8 crore), and will augment the subsidiary's existing technological capacity (Rs7.5 crore).

As on 30th June, 2010, it had around 26,000 clients in its broking business.
MFSL posted a net profit of Rs24.45 crore for the year ended March 2010 on a total income of Rs58.47 crore. Revenues from equity broking and related services for the years ended 31 March 2009 and 2010 were Rs15.62 crore and Rs19.47 crore respectively.  

Its EPS (earnings per share) for the past fiscal year was Rs12.58. Based on the post-issue equity and EPS of FY10 its PE works out to 14.7 at the lower end of the price band and 15.40 at the upper end of the price band. MFSL's listed peers like Motilal Oswal Financial Services, Indiabulls Financial Services, Emkay Global Financial Services, India Infoline, and Edelweiss Capital are trading at PE of 14.2, 12.3, 10.8, 15.0 and 15.3, respectively.

SBI Capital Markets Ltd is the sole book-running manager while Link Intime India Private Ltd is the registrar to the issue.


Lock-in period for FDI in realty sector not restrictive: Sharma

New Delhi: The government today said foreign investors in the country's real estate sector will have to remain invested for a minimum of three years and rejected industry claims about the policy restricting FDI inflows, reports PTI.

"I do not see the three-year lock-in period as too restrictive. Investors must come with confidence that they are here to stay for more than that (period)," commerce and industry minister Anand Sharma said at a Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Ficci) meet here.

The sector has been seeking a relaxation in this FDI policy on the ground that it was discouraging overseas investors from putting money into the real estate space here.

Speaking at the '7th International Real Estate Summit' organised by Ficci, Mr Sharma, however, assured that there would not be any increase in the three-year lock-in period either.

"... We are not going to increase the duration of this lock-in period," he said.

The country has attracted about $8.7 billion worth of FDI in the housing and real estate sector since April, 2000.

India allows 100% FDI through the automatic route in townships, housing, built-up infrastructure and construction-development projects, subject to certain conditions.

The original investment cannot be repatriated before a period of three years from completion of minimum capitalisation. However, the investor may be permitted to exit earlier with the prior approval of the government through the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB).

Projecting India as an ideal destination for FDI, the minister said the country has taken several steps to liberalise the foreign investment regime since 1991.

Earlier, Ficci Real Estate Committee co-chairman Pranay Vakil said the restrictions on FDI in the sector were affecting inflows. He further said that foreign investments in multi-brand retail would lead to the growth of malls in the country.

A high-level government committee has been set up to look into suggestions for opening the multi-brand retail sector for FDI.

On the lock-in period, a joint report by Ficci and E&Y released today said there was no clarity on "whether it is applicable for the minimum capitalisation amount or for the entire sum of the investment".

It also said there is no single window clearance system for different approvals. "In addition, the approval system is not time-bound and could take up to two years," it said.

At the summit, Dean Hodcroft of Ernst and Young said though there were restrictions on FDI in the real estate sector, India is seen as a big market.

As per the report, India ranks fifth in the world in terms of future real estate investment. China, the US and UK top the chart, in that order.


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