Private equity funds are betting high on India and its growth outlook as they committed $7.1 billion in the first half of 2015 in segments like banking-finance, IT&ES and pharmaceuticals, says a report. The private equity inflows in the first half of this year were 38% higher in value terms as compared to $5.11 billion in the same period of 2014. In volume terms, the number of deals jumped 62% to 460 in the first half of 2015 compared to the same period last year, the report by industry body Assocham said. However, value of merger and acquisitions during the period this year fell to $15.8 billion in 277 deals, from $17.2 billion in 269 deals in the first half of 2014. The M&As had aggregated 255 for the corresponding period of 2013 worth $12 billion. The top three sectors dominating the M&A scenario in the first half of 2015 were IT & ITES (38%); Banking & Financial Services (14%); and Pharma, Healthcare & Biotech (11%). "While the M&A opportunities remain robust, especially when there are companies on the block with high level of leverage, enhanced interest by the private equity players certainly remains a noteworthy point," Assocham Secretary General D S Rawat said. The inbound M&As saw more interest in terms of value at $7.4 billion in the first half of 2015, against $4.8 billion in the same period of the previous year, reflecting more global interest in the Indian economy, the report said. "While partly it is because of increased opportunities in the Indian markets, some amount of credit is due to the pragmatic policies being followed by Narendra Modi Government, which is seeking to unclog the investment scenario," the report said. It said the first half of the year also witnessed more high value deals compared with the same period in 2014, with 15 deals valued above $100 million each and 19 deals in the $50-100 million range.
The top 30 deals accounted for around 60% of the total deal value in the first half this year.