Millennium Post

As deadline ends today, cos rush to meet 25% public shareholding

As a Sebi deadline ends on Monday for listed private sector entities to achieve minimum 25 per cent public shareholding, promoters of at least nine firms, including Tata Comm and Essar Ports, would offer to sell shares worth a cumulative amount of over Rs 700 crore to meet the norms.

The other companies slated for sale of promoter shares on Monday to meet the guidelines include BGR Energy Systems, Omaxe, Kartik Investment Trust, Lords Chloro Alkali Ltd, Marathwada Refractories, Rama Phosphates and Balashri Commercial Ltd.
Together, these nine companies are expected  to sell shares worth an estimated amount of more than Rs 700 crore. Besides, some more companies are expected to announce their offers to meet the deadline.

While the Offers for Sale (OFS) of Tata Communications and BGR Energy would be conducted on the platforms of both the BSE and NSE, the remaining offers would be held on either of the two bourses.
As per the Sebi's minimum public holding norms, all listed entities from the private sector are required to achieve 25 per cent or more public holding by 3 June, 2013.

For the public sector entities, the minimum public holding of 10 per cent is required to be achieved by 8 August, 2013.
The norms were announced three years ago in 2010, but most of the non-compliant companies began working towards meeting these guidelines in the recent months only.

During the course of the last month itself, more than 60 companies offered to sell their promoter shares to meet the deadline and have sold shares worth more than Rs 10,000 crore in the process.
Some of the major companies that recently sold shares include Jet Airways, Essar Shipping, Tata Tele, Novartis India, Adani Enterprises, Sun TV and JSW Energy.

While Sebi has been firm about not extending the deadline, it has provided numerous relaxations to the companies to help them meet the norms in recent months.
While easy single-day auction routes like OFS and IPP (Institutional Placement Programme) were announced for the companies especially to meet the guidelines, Sebi also allowed the companies to undertake many other avenues to enable them lower the promoter holding and meet the norms. 
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