PE firms invest $17.6 bn in Indian companies over first 9 months of 2017

Private equity (PE) firms have invested about $17.6 billion in Indian companies in the first nine months of 2017 alone. Across the 12 months of 2015, they had invested $17.3 billion.

According to data compiled by Venture Intelligence, the year has already recorded as many as 21 investments, over $200 million each, in addition to 15 deals between $100 million and $200 million each. The mega deals have been dominated by four sectors: Internet and mobile; infrastructure; information technology services and business process outsourcing; and banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI).

Over $4 billion of the investment value, or 24 per cent of the total, has been committed by just one technology-focused investor: Japan-based SoftBank. Its investments included $250 million in budget hotels aggregator Oyo Rooms, $1.4 billion in mobile wallet leader Paytm and a whopping $2.5 billion in e-commerce leader Flipkart.

The record-breaking value figures have, however, been accompanied by a fall in terms of deal volumes, the Venture Intelligence analysis shows. The number of deals in the first nine months of 2017 (at 402) is 23 per cent lower than that in the comparable period during the previous year (and 35 per cent lower than the same period in 2015).

July-September quarter

PE firms invested about $5.7 billion across 106 deals during the quarter ended September 2017, the second-largest quarter ever, behind only January-March 2017 ($6.4 billion across 163 transactions).

The investment amount in July-September was 73 per cent more than that in the same period of 2016 (which had seen $3.3 billion across 153 transactions) and five per cent more than the previous quarter (which saw $5.4 billion across 133 transactions). The number of investments in July-September period has been the lowest in 2017, down 31 per cent over the same period last year and down 20 per cent over the previous quarter. (Note: July-September figures include venture capital investments, but exclude PE investments in real estate).

The July-September quarter of 2017 recorded as many as 13 investments above $100 million (compared to 10 in the same period last year). While SoftBank’s $2.5-billion investment in Flipkart was the largest to be reported during July-September quarter, the next three largest investments during the period were in BFSI companies: Carlyle’s $300 million in SBI Card; $260 million raised by RBL Bank, and $240-million buyout of Karvy Computershare by General Atlantic.

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