Blackstone, KKR Join Race for India’s Emami Cement
(Bloomberg) -- Blackstone Group Inc. and a rival consortium led by KKR & Co. are considering bids for the cement unit of Indian cosmetics to paper conglomerate Emami Group, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
TPG Capital is also weighing a bid for Emami Cement Ltd. and could look for a local partner, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified as the discussions are private. KKR is in talks to team up with Nirma Ltd., a maker of detergents, the people said.
Emami Group has picked Arpwood Capital Ltd. and Credit Suisse Group AG to manage the sale of the cement unit, seeking a valuation of about $1 billion, Bloomberg News has reported. The Kolkata-based conglomerate led by R. S. Agarwal and R.S. Goenka is joining tycoons including Anil Ambani and Subhash Chandra in selling assets to pare debt as a cash crunch in Indian markets increase funding costs.
Deliberations are ongoing and the private equity firms could decide against a bid, the people said. Representatives for Blackstone and TPG declined to comment, while representatives for Emami Group and KKR said they do not comment on market speculation. A representative for Nirma didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.
Emami Cement runs three manufacturing plants in India and is setting up another one in Kalinganagar, Odisha, according to its website. The company has more than 50 branches across the country, its website shows.
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