INTERVIEW - S Kumars to raise funds via listing; PE

MUMBAI Thu Mar 18, 2010 5:50pm IST

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MUMBAI (Reuters) - Textiles maker S Kumars Nationwide Ltd is looking to raise between $100 million to $150 million by listing its subsidiary, Reid & Taylor, in the next six months, a top official said on Thursday.

The company is also talking to private equity (PE) firms to spin off its brand 'Belmonte', Managing Director and Vice Chairman Nitin Kasliwal told Reuters in an interview.

S Kumars currently holds about 75 percent in Reid & Taylor, with Singapore's GIC owning the rest.

In June 2008, GIC Special Investments had agreed to invest 9 billion rupees in Reid & Taylor through a fresh issue of shares and warrants.

"It will take about six months for the listing, we may also do it earlier," Kasliwal said.

"Part of the IPO proceeds would go for retail expansion, part for capacity expansion and part of it to increase our presence in overseas markets," he added.

S Kumars sells apparels under a variety of brands at different price points, from 'Reid & Taylor' which caters to the premium and upper-middle segment of the suiting market to 'Belmonte' suits and shirts for the economy segment.

It also sells suiting under the 'S.Kumars' brand and home textiles under the 'Carmichael House' brand.

Kasliwal said S Kumars was talking to 4-5 foreign PE players for spinning off 'Belmonte' into a separate subsidiary in the next 3-4 months to bring in more funds.

"We will unlock value and bring in PE players there. We have got very firm interest from 4-5 people," he said, adding that they were based overseas.

S Kumars is also looking to launch a share sale to institutions worth up to $100 million within the next 12 months as valuations improve, he said.

It has set a capex of about 7 billion rupees for the next fiscal for brand building and for new equipment and the funds would be raised via a combination of internal accruals, debt and fresh equity, Kasliwal said.

S Kumars had in June 2009 acquired U.S. clothing company Hartmarx Corp for about $120 million.

"We are not doing any more acquisitions over the next six months. We are consolidating. We will grow our existing brands."

Its international business accounts for about 45 percent of its consolidated revenues and the firm was seeing a good pick-up in orders from traditional strongholds such as the U.S. and Europe, he added.

Shares of S Kumars ended up 12.02 percent at 54.05 rupees in a firm Mumbai market.

(Editing by Harish Nambiar)

(For more business news on Reuters Money visit www.reutersmoney.in)

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