DEAL ON

Reliance Infra in advanced talks to sell cement unit for $394 million

Reliance Infra in advanced talks to sell cement unit for $394 million Under the terms of the deal, the buyer would also take over the cement unit's outstanding debt of 24 billion rupees, giving the business an enterprise value of 50 billion rupees | Reuters

India's Reliance Infrastructure Ltd is in advanced talks to sell its cement business for 26 billion rupees ($394 million) and a deal could be announced as soon as this week, said a source with direct knowledge of the matter.

Under the terms of the deal, the buyer would also take over the cement unit's outstanding debt of 24 billion rupees, giving the business an enterprise value of 50 billion rupees, the source said, declining to be identified ahead of a public announcement.

A spokesman for the Reliance Group, a diversified conglomerate whose business interests range from telecoms to finance and infrastructure building, declined to comment.

Reliance Infrastructure's cement unit has three plants with total installed capacity of 5.8 million tonne per annum (MTPA). Another 5 MTPA cement manufacturing plant is being developed in western Maharashtra state, according to its website.

A consortium, which includes some private equity firms, is likely to emerge as the successful bidder for the unit, said the source, adding seven bidders had been shortlisted earlier and that the sale proceeds would be used to pare the group's debt.

Bloomberg earlier on Wednesday reported, citing people familiar with the matter, that Reliance Infrastructure was in talks with cement makers as well as private equity firms including Blackstone Group LP and Carlyle Group LP for the sale.

Blackstone and Carlyle declined to comment when contacted by Reuters.

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