Fund raising by Indian companies through retail issuance of non-convertible debentures (NCDs) plunged by 58% to about Rs 7,300 crore in the first nine months of the current fiscal.
In comparison, firms had collectively raised Rs 17,426 crore via 14 issues in the April-December period of 2013-14.
Most of the funds have been raised to support the working capital requirements and for other general corporate purposes.
NCDs are loan-linked bonds issued by a company that cannot be converted into stock and usually offers higher interest rate than that of convertible debentures.
According to latest data from Securities and Exchange Board of India, firms including Shriram City Union Finance, Kosamattam Finance, SREI Infrastructure Finance, ECL Finance and Muthoot Finance collectively raised Rs 7,348 crore via NCDs in 2014-15 through 19 issuances.
This was more than the initial target of Rs 3,075 crore.
Market experts said that fund raising via NCDs has been less compared to the year-ago period as companies have preferred QIPs (Qualified Institutional Placement)and rights issues route to garner funds.
"Institutional investors were bullish on equity market and preferred to tap QIP route during the year instead of debt instrument, mainly on account of sustained rally in the stock market supported by change in government at Centre," Geojit BNP Paribas Research Head Alex Mathew said.
Individually, Shriram Transport Finance Company raised Rs 1,975 crore, as against a target of Rs 500 crore; IFCI mopped-up Rs 1,209 crore against a base size of Rs 250 crore
Muthoot Finance mopped up Rs 466 crore against a base size of Rs 250 crore and again Muthoot Finance garnered Rs 436 crore as against a target of Rs 200 crore.
Moreover, SREI Infrastructure Finance, Shriram Transport Finance Company, Kosamattam Finance, Muthoot Finance, Muthoot Fincorp and Muthoottu Mini Financiers tapped the NCD route more than once.
In the previous fiscal, about Rs 42,383 crore was generated through 35 issues of NCDs.