Shipping Corp surges 19% as govt gets multiple bids for privatisation

Shares of privatisation bound Shipping Corporation of India (SCI) surged over 19 per cent in intra-day trade on Tuesday to hit a fresh 52-week high of Rs 123.55 on the BSE after Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM) Secretary Tuhin Kanta Pandey said the government has received multiple bids for the company.

DIPAM, in December, had invited expressions of interest (EoI) for strategic disinvestment of its entire stake of 63.75 per cent in Shipping Corp of India, along with the transfer of management. The last date for submitting the bids was February 13, which was later extended to March 1.

"Multiple Expressions of Interest have been received for privatisation of Shipping Corporation of India Limited. The transaction will now move to the second stage," Pandey tweeted.

According to a PTI report, London-based shipping firm Foresight Group is among the multiple bidders who have put in preliminary bids for buying the government's entire stake in SCI.

The sources have told PTI that Foresight Group has bid in a consortium with Belgium-based Exmar NV and Dubai-based GMS.

Essar Group, as well as Adani Group, have not bid for Shipping Corp privatisation, the sources added, according to the report.

In November last year, the Cabinet had given in-principle approval for strategic divestment of Shipping Corp and Container Corp of India. However, the plans were delayed due to the pandemic.

In her Budget Speech 2021-22, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said, "a number of transactions namely Bharat Petroleum Corp, Air India, Shipping Corp of India, Container Corp of India, IDBI Bank, BEML Ltd, Pawan Hans, Neelachal Ispat Nigam Ltd, among others, would be completed in 2021-22."

For 2021-22, the government has set a disinvestment target of Rs 1.75 lakh crore, over five times what it is aiming to raise in the current financial year. In the revised estimates, the target has been set at Rs 32,000 crore for the current financial year.

At 10 am, shares of SCI wwere trading 17 per cent higher at Rs 121.95 as against a 1 per cent rise in S&P BSE Sensex at 50,349.

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