Open offer for United Spirits shares postponed, awaits final Sebi nod

Business

The open offer for buying 26 per cent in Vijay Mallya-led United Spirits, which was to start today, has been postponed, pending final approval from market regulator Sebi.

JM Financial, the manager for the open offer, has said that since the "final observations from Sebi" are awaited, the schedule has been revised.

"... The revised schedule of activities will be intimated in due course," according to a filing made by United Spirits to the BSE.

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Global liquor major Diageo Plc is to acquire 26 per cent shareholding in United Spirits through the open offer worth Rs 5,441 crore, as part of a deal to buy up to 53.4 per cent stake in the company.

As per the Detailed Public Statement (DPS) issued in November last year, the open offer was to start on January 7.

Shares of United Spirits declined 1.12 per cent to close at Rs 1,915.25 on the BSE.

As per the transaction, announced on November 9, Diageo is acquiring a 27.4 per cent stake in USL, through a combination of purchase of shares from existing promoters and a preferential allotment of share, for Rs 5,725.4 crore.

Any acquisition of 25 per cent or more stake in a listed company triggers a mandatory open offer for purchase of additional 26 per cent stake from the public shareholders and the same needs to be cleared by the market regulator.

The proposed open offer for an additional 26 per cent stake in United Spirits entails purchase of about 3.8 crore shares at a price of Rs 1,440 per share, totalling to Rs 5,441 crore.

United Spirits, the country's largest spirits company, is part of Vijay Mallya-led UB Group, whose aviation venture Kingfisher Airlines has been going through turbulent times for many months now.

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