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Private Equity | 4 September 2013

Warburg Pincus To Buy Stake In BIBA

by Charmi Gutka
Warburg Pincus To Buy Stake In BIBA
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Warburg Pincus is all set to buy minority stake in BIBA – India Ethnic Brand for R350 Cr, TOI stated. The investment by fund will also include purchase of the stake held by Kishore Biyani's Future Ventures and Warburg would be joined by Fearing Capital, a PE firm promoted by Aditya Parekh, son of HDFC chairman Deepak Parekh - values Biba at around R1200 Cr.

Equirus Capital was the advisor on the deal.

Future Ventures is the investment arm of Kishore Biyani-promoted Future Group, which runs the India's largest retail chain, Future Retail. It had invested about Rs 40 crore in Biba India in 2008 for the 28.3% stake.

It was recently in talks with half a dozen PE investors and has now moved into exclusive talks with CX Partners. A stake sale is in line with Biyani's move to pare debt and consolidate its retail trade.

Founded by Meena Bindra in 1986, BIBA Apparels owns more than 100 standalone stores in the country. The brand is also available at multi-brand retail stores. It reported more than R300 Cr revenues as on March 31, 2013.

Last October, BIBA Apparels Private Limited formed 51:49 JV with fashion designer Manish Arora to promote Manish Arora's premium ethnic wear brand - 'INDIAN by Manish Arora.

Future Ventures had put its 28% stake in Biba along with its 22% stake in designer Anita Dongre's AND on sale.
General Atlantic is likely to pick up Future Ventures's stake in AND.

Future Ventures, formerly an investment arm of Biyani, has transitioned into a fast moving consumer goods company and wants to offload minority investments in the fashion businesses. It had earlier transferred majority-owned fashion brands to a new group company, Future Lifestyle Fashions.

In January, Future Group Company – Future Ventures was in advance talks to acquire 25% stake in footwear retail company Tresmode of Mumbai, valuing the footwear company at R180 Cr.

Last year, Verlinvest SA picked up around 10% stake in Future Ventures India for around R110 - 130 Cr. In September, it also acquired 100% stake of Express Retail Services for R61.35 Cr.

In this space, Fabindia, the ethnic fabrics and handicrafts retailer bought 40% stake inOrganic India, a North Indian organic food & supplement firm. Premji Invest, the investment arm of Azim Premji, picked up a 7% stake in Fabindia for R100-125 Cr, valuing the John Bissell company at over R1,500 Crore. L Capital had also bought an 8% in Fabindia from Wolfensohn Capital Partners last year.

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