Clearwater’s hot list of Indian companies looking for UK acquisitions


Specialist advisers from Clearwater Corporate Finance are now working with several leading Indian companies looking to make acquisitions in the UK.

Attending high-level discussions with the Indian businesses in New Delhi last month, Clearwater is now searching for potential acquisition targets in sectors including automotive, engineering design, IT, pharmaceutical, consumer products and chemicals.

Companies seeking to make UK acquisitions include the US$1.2 billion turnover pharmaceutical company Ranbaxy Labs and EUR 400 million turnover, Anand Group.

The discussions involved leading mergers and acquisition professionals from across the globe with the theme being Helping India Inc Go Global.

“The Indian businesses presented their acquisition strategies to the delegates,” says Clearwater partner, Andy Moore. “The UK is a prime target for Indian businesses to expand abroad and we will now be approaching potential target companies.”

Other Indian companies looking to make UK acquisitions include the textiles company Sanjay Dalmia Group, consumer products focused Godrej Group which recently acquired Keyline Brands in the UK, United Phosphorous – an agrochemicals company and Mahindra Group, which has acquired Stokes Forgings.

India is the sixth largest economy in the world, as well as one of the fastest growing, with the value of trade with the UK rising by some 24 per cent, from £1.8 billion in the first quarter of 2004, to almost £2.4 billion in the corresponding period in 2005.

Clearwater believes this means there is enormous potential for cross-border corporate finance transactions.

The firm has already played a key role in helping Indian-based automotive group Amtek Auto to acquire leading German machining company, Zelter. Amtek, a leading automotive component manufacturer with operations in India, the USA and Europe, is keen to strengthen its position in mainland Europe.

Delegates also visited the Indian automotive show in Delhi, where a number of other companies discussed acquisitions strategies in Europe and the US.

Peter Church, managing director of Asean Focus Group, said; “We have been following the Asian economies for a few decades now. We are convinced that Asia holds immense potential for deals. India stands out in particular – it’s a deal making country; is hungry to globalise; and follows accounting and business practices that are in line with international standards.”

Recent deals involving Western hemisphere and Indian businesses include the £80 million acquisition by Indian tea manufacturer Apeejay Surrendra Group of Typhoo Tea from UK-based Premier Foods; the $39 million purchase of UK software consultancy Citisoft by Satyam Computer Services, the Indian IT solutions and software developer; and the acquisition for $8.6 million of Anglo-American equity research company Irevna by Crisil, the Indian credit rating services business.