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M&M to acquire 55% stake in Meru for cash consideration of Rs 201.5 cr

Under the agreement, after investment of the first tranche in Meru, M&M will have the right to appoint majority of the directors on the board of Meru and will control its composition

Mahindra & Mahindra
File photo: The logo of Mahindra and Mahindra is seen at a showroom in Mumbai

Homegrown utility vehicles major Mahindra & Mahindra is acquiring 55 per cent stake in ride hailing and radio taxi operator Meru Travel Solutions for a cash consideration of up to Rs 201.5 crore, according to a regulatory filing by the company.

The company signed a share subscription and shareholder agreement on Saturday for subscribing up to 55 per cent of equity share capital of Meru Travel Solutions Pvt Ltd in tranches, Mahindra & Mahindra said in a BSE filing.

Under the agreement, after investment of the first tranche in Meru, M&M will have the right to appoint majority of the directors on the board of Meru and will control its composition, it added.

"Upon obtaining such right, Meru will become a subsidiary of the company," M&M said, adding subsidiaries of Meru -- Meru Mobility Tech Pvt Ltd, V-Link Automotive Services Pvt Ltd and V-Link Fleet Solutions Pvt Ltd -- would in turn also become subsidiaries of M&M.

As per the filing, the acquisition will be through cash consideration and M&M would invest an amount not exceeding Rs 201.5 crore in Meru.

Under the deal structure, M&M will make a primary investment of an amount not exceeding Rs 103.5 crore for a stake of up to 55 per cent in Meru in tranches.

The agreement also envisages M&M to have the right of call option to acquire shares from certain existing investors of Meru and these existing investors of Meru would have put option to sell shares for an amount not exceeding Rs 98 crore, it added.

Meru, which was incorporated in December 2006, had clocked consolidated revenue of Rs 156.6 crore in 2018-19, Rs 189.9 crore in 2017-18 and Rs 277.2 crore in 2016-17.

As automobile companies adapt to the changing times, they have been making investments in new technology driven mobility solutions providers. Earlier this year, South Korea's Hyundai and Kia together had announced that they were investing USD 300 million (about Rs 2,100 crore) in India's ride hailing major Ola.