By Sankalp Phartiyal
MUMBAI, March 18 (Reuters) - Indian conglomerate Larsen & Toubro (L&T) is buying a 20.32 percent stake in IT services company Mindtree for 32.69 billion rupees ($476.57 million), it said on Monday.
L&T, which is acquiring the shares from Indian coffee baron V.G. Siddhartha and companies related to him, said it had also placed an order with its broker for an on-market purchase of up to 15 percent of Mindtree’s shares at 980 rupees apiece.
It is also looking to buy an additional 31 percent from Mindtree’s public shareholders at the same price.
Siddhartha, who is a promoter of Coffee Day Enterprises and Coffee Day Trading, held a 3.33 percent stake in Mindtree at the end of December, stock exchange data showed. Coffee Day Enterprises and Coffee Day Trading hold a combined 17.08 percent stake in Mindtree.
The L&T group, which also comprises software services business L&T Infotech, said it would extend business support to Mindtree, which will remain an independent listed entity.
“Mindtree will benefit from access to larger client base and wider product offerings under a common parentage, giving higher returns to shareholders of Mindtree,” L&T said in its statement.
Mindtree’s board is set to meet on Wednesday. ($1 = 68.5940 Indian rupees) (Reporting by Sankalp Phartiyal Editing by Mark Potter and David Goodman)