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Rediff.com  » Business » US investment firm eyes pharma buyouts

US investment firm eyes pharma buyouts

August 19, 2006 14:34 IST
Trans-India Acquisition Corp, a US-based strategic investment firm promoted by an Indian American Bobba Venkatadri, is considering acquiring Indian pharma and healthcare outfits.

The Chicago-based company will initially invest about Rs 500 crore (Rs 5 billion) in the country. Trans-India is raising $90 million (about Rs 420 crore) through an offer of shares on US stock exchange Nasdaq for the proposed Indian acquisitions.

Trans-India has priced its initial public offer at $8 a share. In its filing with the Securities Exchange Commission, the company said given the experience of its management team, it intended to seek targets within the life sciences sector of the Indian economy.

Trans-India felt that some unique opportunities in India included manufacturing of drugs and drug products, medical devices, diagnostic products and services, biofuels, and agricultural biotechnology, according to the SEC filing.

The company's move highlights the increased interest shown by strategic investment companies overseas in the potential industries like life sciences, biotechnology and agri-biotech in India.

Recently, WNS Holdings, a BPO firm based outside India, also raised about $90 million at $20 a share for India-specific plans.

According to industry analysts, most of these investors are "blank check" companies. These are development-stage companies with no specific business plans, or they have indicated their business plans as to be engaged in a merger or acquisition with unidentified companies.

Rajesh Abraham & C H Unnikrishnan in Mumbai
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