A day after private equity funds and cement companies submitted non-binding bids to acquire Lafarge's India business, the Competition Appellate Tribunal (Compat) stayed the sale of the company's 11-million-tonne capacity assets. The next hearing has been scheduled for May 9, 2016.
Rival cement maker Dalmia Cement (Bharat) Ltd. Wednesday appealed to Compat to stay the sale. It alleged that the Indian laws do not allow Competition Commission of India (CCI) to accept an alternative proposal from Lafarge India to sell its portfolio, 11 months after an order granting partial sale was issued, the Economic Times reports.
"In the meanwhile, operation of order dated 2nd February 2016 passed by the competition commission of India (CCI) shall remain stayed," Mint cited the Compat order passed by its Chairman GS Singhvi as saying.
In March 2015, the CCI had approved the Lafarge-Holcim merger, and had asked Lafarge to divest two of its cement plants that had a combined capacity of 5.15 million tonnes per annum.
However, Lafarge was unable to sell the two plants since the Mines and Minerals Development and Regulation (MMDR) Act prohibited transferring of rights of limestone mines attached with cement plans. Thus, the company issued a fresh proposal of divesting its entire India business. In February 2016, the CCI had reportedly approved the Lafarge's proposal for a second time after it told the regulator that it would sell its entire India business for Rs. 10,000 crore.
International Business Times India Wednesday reported that Blackstone, JSW Cement, Ramco Cements Ltd., Ireland's CRH Plc, financial investors Aion Capital Partners, Advent International, Carlyle Group and Piramal Group, were some of the buyers bidding to buy LafargeHolcim's India assets.
[1 lakh = 100,000 | 1 crore = 10 million | 100 crore = 1 billion]