Private equity (PE) players’ investments in Indian companies in the quarter ended September 2018 increased 60 per cent over the same quarter last year to stand at $9.2 billion across 154 deals, according to Venture Intelligence data. With a total of $23.7 billion in the first nine months, calendar year 2018 has already reached the level seen in full-year 2017 to become the best ever for Indian companies’ PE inflows.
The third-quarter numbers were 11 per cent higher than the second, which had seen an investment of $8.3 billion across 191 transactions and was the best quarter ever for PE investments. When compared with the same quarter last year, the September quarter saw a significant increase over the $5.8 billion clocked across 146 transactions in the same quarter of 2017. The figures include venture capital investments, but exclude PE investments in real estate.
The surge in PE investments in the September quarter of 2018 was mainly on account of a few mega-sized deals — at least three of them valued at more than $1 billion each.
The biggest was ADIA-TPG’s $1.2-billion equity investment in UPL Ltd (formerly United Phosphorus Limited) for a combined 22 per cent stake. The SoftBank Vision Fund-led investment in hotel chain OYO and the investment of WestBridge Capital, Madison India, Rare Enterprises and others in Star Health Insurance were the other $1-billion transactions.
Besides, international investors, attracted to Indian internet and mobile companies after the recent Walmart-Flipkart deal, continued to show interest in this space. What was more encouraging, according to Venture Intelligence founder Arun Natarajan, was that investments in other industries like manufacturing, energy and engineering companies were also quite strong.