Warburg in $200m India deal

The firm has acquired a minority stake in Kerala-based Kalyan Jewellers

Global private equity firm Warburg Pincus has acquired a minority stake in Kalyan Jewellers for INR 12 billion ($196 million; €153 million), according to a statement.

The deal is the largest private investment in the jewellery manufacturing and distribution industry in India to-date, as well as the largest private equity investment in the state of Kerala, the firm said.

Post-investment, Warburg intends to enhance the number of exclusive outlets in existing markets and also move into new regions with an emphasis on the north and the west of the country. Kalyan also plans to rapidly scale up its global presence in the Middle East and Southeast Asia.

The business will open 28 new outlets in the next six months, expanding its distribution network significantly.

“Warburg Pincus’ investment in Kalyan Jewellers is the largest private equity investment into the jewellery industry in India, and is an acknowledgment of the company's highly-talented team, its pioneering role within the industry, and its commitment to the highest levels of customer service,” Vishal Mahadevia, managing director and co-head India at Warburg Pincus, said.

Warburg has been actively investing across Asia Pacific recently, sealing its last investment in India in December 2013, investing $49 million in BIBA Apparels with Faering Capital.

However, the firm is also demonstrating its ability to close large transactions in the Asia Pacific market. In August, Warburg emerged as the largest investor in the $2.4 billion investment in bad loans bank China Huarong Asset Management.

The consortium, which included Malaysian sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional, Goldman Sachs, China Life Insurance, CITIC Securities, China International Capital Corporation, China National Cereals, Oils and Foodstuffs Corporation and Fosun International, took a 20.98 percent stake in the company.