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Strides Arcolab promoter setting up fund to invest in high-growth firms

Arun Kumar is believed to be finalising a $1-bn deal to exit the specialties injectable business

Raghuvir Badrinath  |  Bangalore 

Arun Kumar, the reclusive first-generation promoter of Bangalore-based pharma company Strides Arcolab Ltd, is understood to be actively involved in creating a family office type of fund to channel his personal wealth into fast-emerging Kumar, who is believed to be finalising a $1-billion deal with global pharma majors to exit the specialties injectable business in Strides Arcolab, is scanning the landscape for a clutch of investments, say sources.

Kumar, along with his partner K R Ravishankar, has formed an investment vehicle for these investments and will bring in funds as and when an opportunity arises. Kumar had earlier confirmed to Business Standard he had made an investment in Mysore-based medical equipment company Skanray Healthcare. It is understood that he has made another investment and is looking to scale it up in the near future quite aggressively.

Vishwaprasad Alva, the owner of Skanray Healthcare, says Kumar is pretty high on compliance issues and takes quick decisions. “We had lot of options before us to raise funds. But we decided to go ahead with Arun Kumar as there was a quick connect and his understanding of the sector. He was also pretty quick in taking decision which helped us a lot.”

Kumar and Ravishankar will be joining the likes of Piramals, Azim Premji and N R Narayana Murthy to set up active family offices to invest and manage their wealth and also encourage entrepreneurs. Kumar, however, declined to share details with Business Standard, stating it was a private matter and he had no comments to add.

He founded Strides Arcolab in the 1990s and during the past five years, the company has grown aggressively by acquiring and divesting assets globally and is on the cusp of a mega deal, which will propel Strides Arcolab into a high growth orbit from its current annualised revenue rate of close to $600 million.

Kumar, a commerce graduate, began his career in the exports department of Bombay Drug House Ltd and was soon promoted to head the international division. He also served as general manager of British Pharmaceuticals Laboratories Ltd before starting Strides Arcolab.

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First Published: Wed, January 23 2013. 00:22 IST