RCom raises Rs 4,800 cr in the biggest fund-raising by a pvt co

Reliance-CommunicationsNew Delhi: Reliance Communications, India's fourth-largest telecom operator, Wednesday raised Rs 4,800 crore from a share sale to institutional investors, the biggest QIP fund-raising by a private firm.

RCom, headed by billionaire Anil Ambani, will also raise Rs 1,300 crore by issuing warrants to its promoters, which along with the QIP proceeds would go to trimming the firm's huge debt.

The company, which opened the qualified institutional placement (QIP) at a price of Rs 142.13 a share, got total bids of more than Rs 12,000 crore, of which it retained Rs 4,800 crore, sources said.

US funds snapped up major portion of offering while over 80 percent contribution came from overseas bluechip funds.

This QIP is bigger than previous institutional fund raising by Adani (Rs 4,000 crore) and GMR (Rs 3,966 crore).

After the QIP, promoter shareholding in RCom will drop to 60 percent from 67 percent while foreign holding will be 23 percent.

The fund raising will help the company reduce its debt that has doubled to Rs 40,177.6 crore in four years.

Proceeds of QIP will be used to repay high cost rupee debt. Interest cost savings will be over Rs 800 crore per year, sources said.

RCom shares closed at Rs 151.40 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, marginally higher than previous close of Rs 151.35.

The company had yesterday stated that its board of directors, besides authorising opening of the QIP, had also approved the issue and allotment of 8.67 crore warrants to the promoters.

The offer price of the QIP has been fixed at Rs 142.13 a share, which is a 5 percent discount to the floor price of Rs 149.61, based on the formula prescribed by Sebi, it had said.

"The proceeds of the QIP offering and the preferential allotment will be used primarily for repayment of debt and deleveraging the balance sheet of the company," RCom had said.

RCom in a stock exchange filing yesterday stated that the promoters and promoter group entities would be entitled to as many as 8.67 crore shares (up to about Rs 1,300 crore or USD 217 million) under the preferential allotment.

"The promoter/promoter group entities will be required to make payment of 50 percent of the subscription amount on the date of allotment of the warrants and the balance 50 percent will be payable on or before March 31, 2015."

The firm said in the filing that the floor price for the preferential allotment, based on the formula by Sebi, has been fixed at Rs 150 a share.

For the quarter ended March 31, RCom posted a 48.5 percent drop in consolidated net profit to Rs 156 crore from a year earlier. Revenue increased 5.36 percent to Rs 5,405 crore. ----- PTI