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Serum Institute ups stake in Orchid

BS Reporter  |  Chennai 

Cyrus Poonawalla-backed Serum Institute has increased its stake in drug major Orchid Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals Ltd by acquiring around 9,13,000 equity shares for Rs 11.6 crore. With this, Poonawalla’s stake in Orchid has gone up around one per cent, from 10 per cent.

As per information available with the exchanges, as on September 2011, Serum Institute had 2,529,197 shares, which is around 3.59 per cent of the total number of shares. The company bought around 4,13,000 equity shares at a price of Rs 120.95 per share on December 19 and 5,00,000 equity shares at a price of Rs 132.14 per share on December 20, 2011.

“Serum is a friendly investor and has been investing in Orchid since 2008. The current stake is probably an averaging strategy and the investors’ confidence in us,” said Ch Ram, head of corporate communications and investor relations, Orchid Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals Ltd.

While Serum held around 3.59 per cent stake in Orchid, Cyrus S Poonawalla individually held 7,20,000 equity shares of around 1.02 per cent till the quarter ended September, 2011.

The rest of the investments are through like Adurjee & Bros and Fortune Intercontinental, said sources.

The promoters and the promoter group had around 29.83 per cent stake in the company till end of September, 2011. Around 77 per cent of the promoter and promoter group stake was pledged till the end of quarter ended September, 2011.

This week, Orchid announced it has arranged fund of around $100 million external commercial borrowings (ECB) from a consortium of Indian banks to redeem its outstanding FCCB of $117 million.

The company has also received an initial milestone payment of $1.5 million (around Rs 7.96 crore) from Merck & Co Limited.

First Published: Fri, December 23 2011. 00:34 IST