Radico dismisses reports of talks with Suntory as speculative
MUMBAI (Reuters) - India's second-largest spirits producer Radico Khaitan (RADC.NS) dismissed media reports of the company being in talks to sell a stake to Japan's Suntory Holdings SUNTH.UL, describing them as "speculative."
Shares of the company closed 5 percent higher on Tuesday after the Economic Times reported that Radico is in discussions with Suntory to sell a 26 percent stake for 8.7 billion rupees ($131.61 million), citing investment bankers.
Speculation of M&A deals in the Indian beverages market has been rife after Diageo PLC (DGE.L) bought a stake in United Spirits (UNSP.NS) in November. Market talk has intensified as the slump of the rupee makes Indian assets cheaper to prospective overseas buyers.
Radico, which sells brands such as 8 p.m. Whiskey, Magic Moments, Contessa Rum and Old Admiral Brandy, has in the past said it is open to a joint venture with international companies.
A spokesperson for Suntory said the Japanese firm won't comment on the media reports.
($1 = 66.1050 Indian rupees)
(Reporting by Nandita Bose in MUMBAI; Additional reporting by James Topham in TOKYO; Editing by Ryan Woo)
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