KMC Constructions gets Rs500 crore from 3i group fund

KMC Constructions has received Rs500-crore investment in the company flagship KMC Infratech from 3i India Infrastructure, an investment fund established by global private equity firm 3i Group Plc

KMC Constructions said it has received Rs500-crore investment in the company flagship KMC Infratech from 3i India Infrastructure, an investment fund established by global private equity firm 3i Group Plc.

"The private equity giant will pick up significant stake in the build-operate-and-transfer (BOT) road projects of KMC Constructions," KMC Constructions said in a release.

Hyderabad-based KMCIL, incorporated in 2008, is the flagship company of KMC Constructions for all its existing and prospective road "build, operate and transfer" assets. KMCIL has one of the largest road portfolios in the country and owns 10 projects aggregating 5,000 lane km, the statement said.

"KMCIL is well positioned to take advantage of the significant opportunity in the road sector in India. This investment allows us to partner with an infrastructure operator with a sound track record of constructing and operating road assets in the country," Anil Ahuja, managing director and Head of 3i Asia, said.

The $1.2 billion 3i India Infrastructure Fund is focused on power, road, ports and airports. Since inception, the fund has invested in Adani Power, Soma Enterprises, Krishnapatnam Port Company and GVK Energy.

Spark Capital Advisors acted as the exclusive financial advisor to KMC Group and DSK Legal acted as the legal advisor to the transaction for KMCIL.

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Ashok Leyland rolls out new LCV, DOST

Ashok Leyland and Nissan Motor Company have rolled out their first light commercial vehicle under the brand, “Ashok Leyland-DOST”

Hinduja Group flagship company Ashok Leyland and Japanese auto-maker Nissan Motor Company have rolled out their first light commercial vehicle under the brand, "Ashok Leyland-DOST."

Ashok Leyland and Nissan Motor Company entered into a master-cooperation agreement in October 2007. The agreement envisaged the two companies entering into the light commercial vehicle business in India for vehicle manufacturing, powertrain manufacturing and technology development. As per the agreement, both companies will together make an investment of Rs2,300 crore.

After making a soft launch to the media with their first 1.25-tonne pick-up vehicle, branded "Ashok Leyland-DOST", Nissan Ashok Leyland Powertrain Ltd chairman and Hinduja Automotive executive vice-chairman Sumantran said they would be manufacturing the product from Ashok Leyland's Hosur plant in the first phase.

"We are going completely into a new chapter. Ashok Leyland did not have products in the 7.5 GVW (gross vehicle weight) category. With this association (with Nissan Motor Company) we are going into a segment which is more crowded...," Mr Sumantran said.

Stating that the use of their existing facility has made them utilise only "half" of the earmarked investments, he said the growth of vehicle sales in the 3.5-tonne (category) in India was a "phenomenon".

While the formal roll-out of the product will take place in the second quarter next fiscal, Mr Sumantran said the new vehicle will be available in three versions-a base version, a mid-version with power steering and higher version with a dual tone interiors, power steering and an air-condition facility.

He declined to comment on the price of the vehicle, saying it would be released only when the product goes for sale. He also declined to comment on volume of the products they would be rolling out from Hosur facility. "The plant has a capacity of 150,000 units. Both Ashok Leyland and Nissan would be utilising it for producing the vehicles from this plant in the first phase," he said.

For retailing the product, Ashok Leyland would appoint an exclusive LCV dealership network across the country in the coming months, he added.
The flagship products to be rolled out from this partnership range from trucks to buses in the 5 tonne-7.5 tonne GVW (gross vehicle weight) category.
The commercial vehicle unveiled is equipped with a turbo-charged common rail diesel engine developed by Ashok Leyland engineers. The design and body of the vehicle has been made by Nissan Motor Company.

On Tuesday, Ashok Leyland ended 0.79% down at Rs56.45 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while the Sensex gained 0.94% to 19,120.80.

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Axis Bank to launch six more branches in Mumbai

Axis Bank plans to launch six additional branches in Mumbai, taking the total number of its branches in Maharashtra to 181 by 31st March

Private sector lender Axis Bank said it plans to launch six additional branches in Mumbai, taking the total number of its branches in Maharashtra to 181 by 31st March.

These branches, located in the Mumbai Circle, also include branches in Navi Mumbai and Turbhe, a press release said.

Axis Bank's deputy managing director, SK Chakrabarti, said, "Axis Bank is focused on taking its products and services into the farthest corners of the country. The Bank, to grow its network and achieve this, planned to open 350 branches across the country by the end of this fiscal and is well on course to achieve that target."

The Bank enjoys the patronage of the state government for collection of stamp duty through franking.

On Tuesday, Axis Bank ended 2.74% up at Rs1,422.60 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while the Sensex gained 0.94% to 19,120.80.

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