Wilmar's India joint venture moves forward with planned IPO

SINGAPORE (THE BUSINESS TIMES) - Mainboard-listed agri-business Wilmar International has moved forward with the planned listing of its Adani Wilmar joint venture, with a preliminary prospectus filed in India this week.

The proposed initial public offering (IPO) will involve the issue of up to 36 billion rupees (S$651.5 million) in new shares, with a face value of one rupee apiece, Wilmar said on Thursday (Jan 20), a day after the prospectus was filed with the Registrar of Companies in Gujarat.

Adani Wilmar's draft prospectus last year had indicated that it could raise up to 45 billion rupees in the listing - with 19 billion rupees set aside for capital expenditure, 11.7 billion rupees for the payment of borrowings, and 5 billion rupees for strategic acquisitions.

Wilmar has now said in its latest update that the price band for the IPO is yet to be decided by Adani Wilmar, and will be advertised in Indian newspapers at least two working days before the issue opens.

The IPO will open for public subscription on Jan 27, and close on Jan 31.

Adani Wilmar - a 50-50 joint venture in fast-moving consumer goods between Wilmar and India's Adani Group - plans to use the IPO proceeds for capital expenditure, debt repayment, acquisitions and investments, and general corporate purposes, said Wilmar.

There will be no secondary offering for the IPO, which is to take place on the Bombay Stock Exchange and the National Stock Exchange of India.

But Wilmar told shareholders that the planned listing is still dependent on factors such as the level of investor interest and prevailing market conditions, with no assurance of proceeding.

The potential listing of Adani Wilmar had been floated in media reports since March 2021, with the draft red herring prospectus filed in August 2021.

Wilmar listed its China unit Yihai Kerry Arawana in Shenzhen in October 2020.

Wilmar shares closed up five cents, or 1.2 per cent, at $4.34 on Thursday.

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