No immediate plans to integrate Shriram business with PEL: Ajay Piramal

Ajay Piramal
Billionaire and Piramal Enterprises Limited Chairman Ajay Piramal has said that he doesn't have any plans to integrate Shriram Group's financial business with Piramal Enterprise. 

Piramal leads Chennai-based Shriram Group, which has assets under management (AUM) worth about Rs 1 lakh crore, mainly from non-banking financial companies (NBFCs).

Early this year, it was reported that Piramal might consolidate his control in Shriram Capital, the holding company of the financial services entities of Shriram group, by increasing his stake to one third and naming a key executive as the firm's chief executive officer. 

Currently, Piramal is one of the major shareholders, besides Shriram Employees Trust and South African financial conglomerate Sanlam, in Shriram Capital.

Rajesh Laddha, who was the CFO of Piramal Group, was appointed as the managing director and chief executive officer of Shriram Capital.

"It is an option (merger of Shriram Capital with the financial services business of PEL) we have... and it is clear they (Shriram group) want it. We will see what is to be done at the right time," Piramal was quoted in a report early this year.

Responding to an analyst's question on his thoughts about integration, Ajay Piramal recently said that "at the moment, we do not have plans to integrate with Shriram".

"I think the Piramal book is growing on its own and we will continue like this for a while," he said.

Recently, in an interview with Business Standard, Shriram Group founder R Thyagarajan said that merging with Piramal was not something that the group was discussing. "But if you ask me, at the back of our mind, it would also be there. Merging with Piramal is not something which we are now discussing."

Piramal's interest in Shriram started in 2013 when he acquired a 10 per cent stake in the Shriram Transport Finance Company for Rs 1,636 crore. A year later, he picked up a 20 per cent stake in Shriram Capital, of which he became the chairman in 2015, for Rs 2,014 crore. Piramal also acquired a 10 per cent stake in Shriram City Union Finance for Rs 801 crore.

He also led the IDFC-Shriram Group talks for a potential merger, which would have been one of India's biggest financial services conglomerates. However, the plan was dropped due to valuation differences.

According to the merger plan, Shriram City Union was to be merged with IDFC Bank and Shriram Transport was to be delisted and made a wholly owned subsidiary of IDFC, which was to act as the holding company of the merged entity.

Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel