India to sell up to 25% stake in 4 defence firms

The Indian government (GOI) is planning to sell up to 25 per cent stake in four of its defence Public Sector Undertakings (PSU) through an initial public offering (IPO).

The GOI’s Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM) has through an advertisement invited bids from registrars for disinvestment of up to 25 per cent stake each in Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL), Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers (GRSE), Mazagon Dock Limited (MDL)  and Mishra Dhatu Nigam Limited (MIDHANI).

According to the tender document, the bids have to be submitted by August 18 to DIPAM, which handles disinvestment of public sector enterprises.

The Cabinet in April cleared the disinvestment of these 4 PSUs under the defence ministry, and thereafter DIPAM invited bids from merchant bankers and legal advisors for managing the stake sales. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government has been divesting its stake in several public and private companies to meet its Rs725 billion ($11.38 billion) divestment target during the year to March 2018.

Bharat Dynamics (BDL) was established in 1970 and is a manufacturer of guided missiles and allied defence equipment.

Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers was incorporated in 1934 and was taken over by the government in 1960. It primarily constructs warships and auxiliary vessels for the Navy and the Coast Guard.

Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders (MDL) is the lead shipyard of India serving the nation’s strategic requirements. At present, MDL is constructing three major warship building projects and one submarine project.

Mishra Dhatu Nigam (MIDHANI) is engaged in production of metals and alloys as part of an import substitution strategy, which is designed to reduce India’s reliance on foreign suppliers and achieve self-sufficiency.

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