The government has invited expression of interest from interested parties for selling 63.75% shareholding along with management control in Shipping Corporation of India NSE 3.39 %, as part of its divestment drive.
Interested parties may include public or private companies, limited liability partnerships, SEBI-registered alternatives investment funds or any other fund eligible for investing in India. Employees of the company or management have been allowed to bid either directly and independently or by forming a consortium, but will have to adhere to government guidelines.
For all bidders, the government has fixed the minimum net worth at Rs 2,000 crore as part of the eligibility criteria. In case of a sole bidder the consolidated net worth would be on a consolidated basis. In case of a consortium, the lead member should have net worth of Rs 1,000 crore. Both categories should have positive Ebitda or earnings before interest, depreciation and amortization in three of five financial years.
In case of funds, the net worth is 0.25 times of assets under management or 100% of committed capital. CPSEs are not allowed to bid.
The government has set February 13 as the last date for entries. Submission by email by the end date has been allowed, but physical bids by such applicants must come in by March 1, the department of investment and public asset management (DIPAM) has specified.
“Certain non-core assets are to be hived off from SCIL and shall not form part of the transaction, the details of which will be shared at the RFP stage,” the government said in the preliminary information memorandum issued Tuesday.
Other conditions such as employee protection, retirement policy including VRS, asset stripping, business continuity, lock-in of the shares acquired in the transaction, bearing Indian flag on vessels etc, post
disinvestment, will be specified at the request for proposal stage, the government added.
ET had reported last month that the government had conducted virtual road shows for SCIL where companies such as Vedanta, Dubai’s DP World and shipping companies from Norway and South Korea among eight to nine investors, had shown interest.
SCI has a fleet strength of 70 vessels and is the largest Indian shipping company catering to the overseas and coastal transportation of goods. The company posted a net profit of Rs 131 crore for the quarter ended September and total income of Rs 876 ..
The government is looking to mop up Rs 2.1 lakh crore from disinvestment for FY21. Of this Rs 1.2 lakh crore is expected from strategic stake sales.
Bharat Petroleum Corp. and Air India are the other two ongoing strategic divestments that the government wants to conclude within this financial year.