* Shares covered 1.2 times in largest Indian IPO in 2 years
* Bharti Infratel part of more than $2 bln equity deals this
(Adds bid details, background)
NEW DELHI/MUMBAI Dec 13 Indian
telecommunications tower operator Bharti Infratel Ltd's initial
public offering for up to $830 million, India's biggest IPO in
two years, was fully covered on Thursday, boosting the outlook
for new share sales.
The Bharti Infratel share sale adds to a busy week for
equity offerings in Asia's third-largest economy, with more than
$2 billion worth of share deals appearing likely to be closed by
Friday after a lacklustre first half of the year.
That strong demand could encourage companies to come to the
equity markets early next year with the government at the
forefront selling down stakes in state companies.
By 3.20 p.m., demand for Bharti Infratel shares was 1.2
times the number on offer, exchange data showed. Institutional
investors had bid for 2.8 times the number of shares reserved
for them. The issue closes on Friday.
Bharti Infratel, a unit of top Indian mobile phone carrier
Bharti Airtel Ltd, and four of its private equity
investors are selling a total 188.9 million shares, or about 10
percent of the company's equity.
The company has set an indicative price band of between 210
rupees and 240 rupees a share for the offering.
Bharti Infratel would be valued at around a 35 percent
discount to U.S. and Indonesian peers based on the EV/EBITDA
valuation method, Nomura analysts wrote in a note this week.
India raised $1.1 billion selling a stake in miner NMDC Ltd
on Wednesday and Britain's BT Group Plc raised
about $187 million by selling its stake in Indian IT services
provider Tech Mahindra.
India's Credit Analysis and Research received bids
for more than 40 times the number of shares on offer this week
in a stock market debut to raise up to $99 million. Jewellery
retailer PC Jeweller Ltd's offer of up to $112 million was
covered nearly 7 times.
Indian companies raised $12 billion through issuing equity
in this year to end November, compared to $8.7 billion in the
same period last year, according to Thomson Reuters data.($1 =
54.2450 Indian rupees)
(Reporting by Devidutta Tripathy and Sumeet Chatterjee; Editing
by Matthew Tostevin)