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Lupin shares fall after Jhunjhunwala cuts stake

BS Reporter  |  Mumbai 

The shares of Mumbai-based drug maker Lupin the fell nearly 4 per cent after billionaire investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala and his wife reduced their stake in the company.

Rakesh JhunjhunwalaJhunjhunwala’s holding in Lupin came down to 1.73 per cent on June 30 from 1.97 per cent on March 31, the company’s shareholding pattern available on the Bombay Stock Exchange website showed. Jhunjhunwala owned 7.73 million shares in Lupin on June 30, down from 8.8 million on

March 31. As for his wife, Rekha, on March 31, she owned 5.59 million shares, or 1.25 per cent, stake. Her name did not figure in the list of public shareholders owning more than 1 per cent stake on June 30.

Lupin fell 3.96 per cent, or Rs 18.95, to Rs 460 on BSE today. The stock touched a low of 452.90 during the day.

According to Deven Choksey, managing director at KR Choksey Shares and Securities, the decision of any individual to offload stake may not be behind the fall. “The buzz of Lupin selling its domestic business has created a negative sentiment among investors, which caused the fall,” he said.

According to reports, Lupin is considering selling its Indian business. The founding shareholders, who own a combined 47 per cent of the company, have started the process of finding a buyer for the operations, said one report. The Indian business may be worth at least $1 billion, it added. However, a Lupin spokesperson, said, “This is baseless and there is no such activity going on.”

The Indian medicines unit accounted for 32 per cent of Lupin’s Rs 5,710 crore revenue for the year ended March 31.

“Lupin has outperformed the Nifty and the CNX Pharma by 19.6 per cent and 9.5 per cent, respectively, in the past three months despite no incremental improvement in business fundamentals,” said Chirag Dagli and Gagan Borana, analysts at ICICI Securities.

First Published: Thu, July 21 2011. 00:27 IST