PE firms invest in Indian Bank

Multiples Asset Management, Mount Kellett Capital, Wolfensohn Capital Partners together with Bancorp will invest $64.4m in Dhanlaxmi Bank.

Private equity firms Multiples Asset Management, Mount Kellett Capital and Wolfensohn Capital Partners together with US bank Bancorp will invest up to INR2.91 billion (€45.18 million; $64.4 million) for a 19.6 percent stake in India’s Dhanlaxmi Bank, the Bombay and National Stock Exchange-listed bank said in a notice to the bourse.

According to the notice, the deal will take the form of a preferential allotment of shares issued at INR140 each by the Bank to the purchasers. Following the transaction the various parties will hold 4.9 percent stakes each in the bank.

Kerala-headquartered Dhanlaxmi Bank is a private bank whose primary customer base is in the southern India states of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala.

Speaking to The Times of India, Amitabh Chaturvedi, chief executive of Dhanlaxmi Bank, said: “This is only the first round of capital raising. We have received permission to raise up to INR10 billion and in the next 5 to 6 months we will go for another round of private placement.”

Special situations-focused Mount Kellett Capital was founded by the former head of the special situations group for Goldman Sachs, Mark McGoldrick. The firm closed its first fund, MKCP I, in December 2009 with approximately $3 billion in aggregate capital commitments.The firm reportedly aimed to raise $5 billion but subsequently lowered its target due to the economic downturn. According to a Reuters report written after the departure of the firm’s former head of China, Jianyi Zhu, in January 2010, the reduction in fund target led Mount Kellett to downsize its staff by around a third in Hong Kong and scrap plans for a Beijing office. As of February this year, the firm had collected $732.4 million for its second fund. 

Multiples is helmed by former ICICI Venture executive Renuka Ramnath. The firm recently held a second close of its debut fund on $350 million and is poised to announce a final close soon, Ramnath told PE Asia in a previous interview. The fund is targeting $450 million in commitments. 

Wolfensohn Capital Partners is a venture capital firm founded by former World Bank president James Wolfensohn in 2005. According to its website, the firm’s current holdings are in Indian online retailer FabIndia, Brazilian bank Daycoval and Brazilian bioenergy company ETH.