The Telegraph
Friday , January 10 , 2014
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IOC selloff put off

New Delhi, Jan. 9: An empowered ministerial panel today deferred its decision on the IOC divestment after facing strong opposition from the oil ministry.

“It has been deferred,” oil minister M. Veerappa Moily told reporters after a meeting of the empowered group of ministers (EGoM) here.

While Moily refused to elaborate on the reasons for putting off the sale, sources said his ministry had raised concerns over the valuation of the PSU and pricing of IOC shares.

The finance ministry aims to garner Rs 4,500 crore by selling 10 per cent of the government stake in the oil major.

At today’s closing price of Rs 198.95 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, IOC has a market capitalisation of about Rs 48,000 crore. This market capitalisation is after factoring in IOC’s 7.69 per cent holding in ONGC worth Rs 17,9711.78 crore at today’s closing price.

The shares of the company had touched a high of Rs 430 in late 2009 and last year’s 52-week high was Rs 375.

At present, the government holds a 78.92 per cent stake in IOC.

The roadshows for the selloff in Mumbai and Chennai had faced stiff criticism over the timing for the stake sale. Similar event in the UK, the US, Hong Kong and Singapore failed to attract the interest of major international investors.

Major funds such as JPMorgan, Templeton, Wellington Management, Aberdeen Asset Management and T Rowe Price did not meet the IOC team nor did others show interest in the firm, sources said.