Pirvate equity firm Blackstone Group has acquired a 97.7 percent stake in Aadhar Housing Finance, including the entire stake held by existing shareholders, Wadhawan Global Capital and DHFL. (Photograph: Victor J. Blue/Bloomberg)

Blackstone Buys Aadhar Housing Finance From DHFL, Wadhawan Group

Blackstone Group LLP has bought a majority stake in Aadhar Housing Finance Ltd., which provides home loans to low-income households, the global private equity firm said in a statement on Tuesday.

Blackstone Group has bought 97.7 percent stake in Aadhar for about Rs 2,200 crore, sources said. Private equity funds managed by Blackstone Group have acquired a 97.7 percent stake in Aadhar Housing Finance, including the entire stake held by existing controlling shareholders, Wadhawan Global Capital Ltd. and Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Ltd.

As part of the acquisition, Blackstone has also infused Rs 800 crore primary equity capital into Aadhar Housing Finance to fund the company's future growth.

Aadhar Housing Finance, which has business interests across 20 states and union territories, has assets under management of Rs 10,000 crore ($1.4 billion), and has an average loan ticket size of less than Rs 10 lakh ($14,000).

"Our primary capital infusion of Rs 8,000 million has approximately doubled the firm’s net worth and reduced its debt to equity ratio by roughly half. We expect the ratings agencies and company's lenders to welcome the ownership transition to a long-term, well-capitalized and patient investor in Blackstone," said Amit Dixit, head of India private equity and senior managing director at Blackstone Group.

"Blackstone's ownership and the upfront capital infusion have been perceived very positively by all stakeholders of the company,” said Aadhar CEO Deo Shankar Tripathi. The focus will remain to provide home ownership to every Indian, providing them accessible, easy and quick housing finance services, he said.

Kapil Wadhawan, chairman of WGC and DHFL, said Aadhar Housing Finance has emerged as one of the largest and most trusted entities in the affordable housing segment and hoped the company will continue to give better services.

Blackstone Group, with an AUM of $512 billion, has been present in India since 2006 and has committed $10.4 billion investment through private equity, real estate and tactical opportunities.

Also read: DHFL To Use Proceeds From Aadhar Housing Stake Sale For Bond Repayments

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