September 19, 2018 / 1:49 PM / a month ago

Blackstone sole bidder to offer all-cash deal for PNB Housing Finance: ET

(Reuters) - U.S. private equity firm Blackstone Group LP is the sole bidder to offer an all-cash deal to buy India-based housing finance company PNB Housing Finance Ltd, the Economic Times reported on Wednesday.

A gardener waters a lawn in front of an advertisement for India's PNB Housing Finance Ltd. initial public offering (IPO) in Mumbai, India, October 25, 2016. REUTERS/Shailesh Andrade/Files

Blackstone is the largest owner of office buildings in India and sees the potential deal as an opportunity to expand into retail space and create synergies in the housing finance sector, the report said, citing two sources with direct knowledge of the development.

The report did not mention the value of the offer made by Blackstone.

After winning the bid, Blackstone is expected to make a consortium, the report said, adding that non-binding bids were submitted by Aug. 25.

The successful bidder will first acquire 51 percent stake in PNB Housing Finance and subsequently raise it to 66 percent or beyond through an open offer.

More than 20 private-equity firms and large home financiers had initially bid for a stake in the company.

The first round of short-listing is expected to close by the end of this week and the process may close by December, the report said.

Blackstone and PNB Housing Finance did not respond to a request for comment.

Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur

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