Baring India increases MphasiS stake

The Delhi-based private equity firm has acquired 7.6 million MphasiS shares on the open market for about INR1.3bn. This is the second time the firm has invested in the BPO and IT service provider, after diluting much of its stake in 2006.

Baring Private Equity Partners India has acquired an additional 3.6 percent stake in MphasiS, a Bangalore-headquartered IT and business process outsourcing service provider listed on India’s National Stock Exchange.

The India-focused private equity firm acquired 7.6 million shares in a bulk deal worth about INR1.3 billion ($25 million; €20 million) on the open market, increasing its stake in the company by 3.63 percent. The shares were bought from Merrill Lynch Capital Markets, the Economic Times reported. The firm now owns a 12.53 percent stake in the MphasiS, Aruna Janakiram, a manager for corporate finance at the company, said.

The investment was made from Baring India Private Equity Fund III, according to the website of the National Stock Exchange. The fund closed on $550 million in 2008.

Baring first invested in MphasiS from Baring India Investments, its first private equity fund. The firm then sold a stake of about 35 percent in the company to EDS, a global IT and BPO services provider, when EDS acquired MphasiS in 2006, according to Indian blog VCCircle. EDS was subsequently acquired by Hewlett-Packard, which now owns a 60.8 percent stake in MphasiS.

In November 2008, Baring India invested up to $15 million in Sphaera Pharma, an integrated drug discovery and development company.

Baring India currently manages assets of more than $1 billion across three India-focused funds. The firm makes significant minority or control investments in sectors such as IT and IT-enabled services, life sciences, banking and financial services, energy, infrastructure and consumer goods. The firm has made more than 20 investments since its inception in 1997.

Baring India and MphasiS did not respond to requests for comment by press time.