It's raining dollars as VCs rush to India

By agencies   |   Monday, 29 August 2005, 07:00 Hrs
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CHENNAI: The year 2005 may see the biggest harvest on deal street. With an estimated $2 billion this year, private equity firms and venture capitalists are set to top the previous best of a billion dollar investment in year 2000.

"During 2000 prior to the dot-com burst venture capitalists and private equity investors invested close to a $1 billion," a source at Indian Venture Capital Association said.

According to market information, Chryscap has around $300 million, Barings' $175 million, GW Fund (Gary Wendt, part of the Jack Welch investments) has $150 million, Actis (formerly known as CDC) is ready with $300 million to $350 million, Hendersen Partners has $300 million for investments in Asia, of which it is believed that $100 million would be for India.

Westbridge has just concluded $200 million promising investments in India. 3i Group is slated to be gunning for investments with a chest of $150 million to $200 million while Citigroup would invest $150 million to $200 million over the next 12 months.

Market sources pointed out that Standard Chartered has a kitty of $400 million for Asia of which a third is likely to be set aside for India. Besides, rough estimates by investors suggest that Temasek of Singapore and Khazana Nasional of Malaysia could have anything $1.5 billion between them.

Besides these overseas investors, desi biggies are also in the fray. ICICI is readying a $1 billion kitty. "They have closed $250 million in joint venture with a US party for investments in real estate and are in the process of raising $750 million for equity," market sources pointed out.

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