JP Morgan investing in Andhra Cements

JP Morgan investing in Andhra Cements
Published: 22 March 2006

Global finance major JP Morgan is investing Rs 73 crore by way of debt and equity in Andhra Cements Ltd.   The size of the equity has been pegged at Rs 24 crore and it would be invested through one of its Mauritius-based investment companies. JP Morgan is also paying a premium for the equity.  
 
The balance — Rs 49 crore — would be made through a five-year-old debt paper carrying an interest rate of 12 per cent. Sources said that on Monday JP Morgan has applied to the Reserve Bank of India for the necessary clearances under the existing foreign exchange regulations. "The clearance from the apex bank is expected soon, and subsequently, the deal would be completed," sources said.  
 
JP Morgan and Andhra Cement had been negotiating over this arrangement for almost six months. In fact, at an extra-ordinary general meeting (EGM) held on March 18, shareholders of Andhra Cements approved the expansion of the authorised capital to Rs 115 crore from Rs 70 crore.  
 
In mid-February this year, JP Morgan and Andhra Cement signed an informal memorandum of understanding. A broad-based agreement among the two is likely to be signed soon.  
 
Talking to ,Business Line Mr GP Goenka said that an investor — and not another cement producer — is likely to be roped in. It is likely to happen "fairly soon" and may be "within this month-end. I will not tell anything more than that because a deal is not complete unit the two parties sign on the dotted lines. Moreover, I would have to inform the stock exchanges before anyone else," Mr Goenka said.  
 
He said that his holding in the company is above 84 per cent and he would not mind hiving a portion of it to an investor.