Franklin Templeton to invest $20M in Shiv-Vani

Citigroup Venture Capital International already holds over 6% stake in the oil and gas exploration service provider.

Shiv-Vani Oil & Gas Exploration Services Ltd, a New Delhi-based company engaged in the exploration and production of oil and natural gas, is raising $20 million (around Rs 92.3 crore) from US fund manager Franklin Templeton. As part of the plan, Shiv-Vani Oil will issue equity shares to Franklin Templeton by itself or through its affiliates or group companies against this transaction, said the company in its filing to the stock exchange.

The shares of Shiv-Vani Oil were traded at Rs 354.5, down by Rs 2.05 or 0.57% at 3:50 pm in the BSE. At the prevailing stock prices, the company has a market capitalization at Rs 1,554.72 crore. This could give Franklin Templeton around a 5-6% stake in the company. Citigroup Venture Capital International, another PE firm, holds more than 6% stake in Shiv-Vani Oil.

The board of directors of the company has already approved the fund raising plan, while the process is subject to the approval of the shareholders of the company. However, the statement did not mention the details of the Franklin Templeton fund, which is investing in the project. When contacted, a spokesperson at Franklin Templeton declined to comment, saying that a company statement will be issued in due course of time.

This is the second private equity investment in the last one-and-a-half-months in firms engaged in drilling and seismic services space. Earlier in December 2009, private equity firm Samara Capital Partners increased its shareholding in Asian Oilfield Services Ltd.

Shiv-Vani Oil offers a wide range of services in the field of oil and natural gas exploration and production such as shot hole drilling, seismic surveying, directional drilling, well development, downhole operations, engineering and logistics. It provides shot hole drilling services to Oil & natural Gas Corporation Ltd (ONGC), the leading oil and gas exploration company in India.

The net sales and net profits of the company in FY 09 were Rs 849.26 crore and Rs 152.89 crore, respectively.

Franklin Templeton’s recent private equity investments in India include test preparation firm Career Point Infosystems Ltd and GKC Projects Pvt Ltd, a Hyderabad-based construction services firm.

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