Blackstone and GIC to buy 40% stake in DLF rental arm

Blackstone Group LP and Singapore sovereign fund GIC Pte were shortlisted to purchase a 40 percent stake in the rental property arm of DLF Ltd., India’s largest listed developer, people with knowledge of the matter said.

The funds were chosen to proceed in the bidding for the interest in DLF Cyber City Developers Ltd. being sold by DLF Chairman K. P. Singh’s family, according to the people. The holding could fetch more than 100 billion rupees ($1.5 billion), the people said, asking not to be identified as the information is private. DLF Cyber City owns about 26.8 million square feet of leased commercial real estate assets, including offices and malls in Kolkata and the area around the Indian capital, according to an August 29 analyst presentation. Singh’s family may consider splitting the stake between the two suitors, one of the people said.

The Singh family received “multiple bids” in June for its stake in the commercial property unit, the company said in its August earnings presentation. The developer had net debt of 221.2 billion rupees at the end of June, the company said. DLF is in advanced stages of closing the sale, which it describes as a “game changer,” Parikshit Kandpal, an analyst at HDFC Securities Ltd., wrote in a note to clients last month.

Kandpal said he expects between 71 billion rupees and 76 billion rupees of cash inflow after tax for the owners, which DLF can use to retire debt. The fund infusion will result in the owners’ stake climbing to 80.2 percent from 74.9 percent currently, he said. The increase will require them to dilute their stake back to 75 percent through a placement of shares to meet the regulatory ceiling, he added.

Representatives for Blackstone and GIC declined to comment, while a representative for DLF didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

DLF has partnered with both GIC and Blackstone in the past. GIC invested in two DLF residential projects in central Delhi last year, while a Blackstone unit has held stakes in seven of the Indian developer’s housing projects.

Credits Financial Express

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