Indian billionaire Anil Agarwal-controlled Vedanta Ltd will exit from its interest in Anglo American Plc by divesting entire stake held in the mining company through structured investments in equity shares by its group entities. Also Read - Cairn investment in Anglo American met all governance requirements: Vedanta
The company on Friday announced that Cairn India Holdings Limited (CIHL), an overseas subsidiary of Vedanta Ltd, and Volcan Investments Limited, a family trust of Agarwal, have agreed to unwind entirely the structured investment entered between them in December 2018 ahead of the originally envisaged schedule. Also Read - Saurabh Chandra, Leena Srivastava join Vedanta advisory board
In December 2018, CIHL purchased an economic interest in Anglo American through a structured investment by buying equity shares held by Volcan Investments for a total consideration of Rs 3,812 crore. Also Read - SC to hear on Jan 8 TN's appeal against NGT order to reopen Vedanta's Sterlite plant
This structured investment made through bonds secured by shares in Anglo American was to mature in parts in April 2020 and October 2020. But Cairn is exiting the same ahead of the originally envisaged schedule.
“With this, Volcan will exercise the early exchange option available to it on July 26, 2019, and consequent to this the full exchange of its two issues of mandatory exchangeable bonds secured by shares in Anglo American Plc, will settle on August 12, 2019. The share price of Anglo American has close to doubled, since Volcan invested, delivering attractive gains to all investors,” Vedanta Ltd said.
The company said that investment by CIHL, which was entered into as part of its cash management activities, has delivered a net gain of over $100 million in the eight-month period it was held. Cash proceeds from the settlement of the transaction will be paid to CIHL on August 13, 2019.
“We are pleased this structured investment has achieved a superior return for CIHL, as we expected when it was entered into. Our strategy continues to be to focus on our existing businesses, where we believe that there are significant opportunities to unlock their full potential. The unwinding reflects our disciplined approach to treasury management and capital allocation together with our commitment at all times to act in the interests of all shareholders,” said Srinivasan Venkatakrishnan, CEO of Vedanta Ltd.
Following the redemption of the structured instrument, completed with due Board approvals, CIHL will have no further economic exposure to Anglo American Plc shares, a company statement said.
Vedanta’s share had taken a beating earlier this year as investors grew jittery of CIHL’s purchase of a stake in Anglo American Plc from Volcan Investments, using its superior cash reserves.
Vedanta Ltd had defended the use of CIHL cash for funding of parent Volcan’s acquisition through a structured deal as it followed all prescribed procedures and would have given Cairn better returns. The deal also had raised governance issues.