India: SKS Microfinance to file for IPO in 3-4 weeks

Mar 2010
Mumbai, India, March, 08 2010 - SKS Microfinance, a firm that makes small loans to poor borrowers, plans to file application papers for an IPO in 3-4 weeks, three sources with knowledge of the deal said.

The exact size and structure of the fundraising was not yet determined, with one source putting the figure at roughly $200 million, some of which might be raised through a pre-IPO placement. Another source said the company could raise $250-$350 million.

The sources did not wish to be named as they were not authorised to speak with the media.

SKS founder Vikram Akula declined to comment.

The for-profit company is India's largest microfinance institution and is backed by private-equity firms such as Sequoia Capital, Kismet Capital and Sandstone Capital.

Citigroup, Kotak Mahindra and Credit Suisse are arrangers for the IPO, sources said.

While microfinance has existed in many forms for decades, the sector has burgeoned into a large market since Muhammad Yunus, a Bangladeshi economist, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006 for his efforts to increase access to finance for the poor.

In the year ended March 2009, SKS made a profit of 802.2 million rupees, while in the first half of the 2010 financial year, it earned 556 million rupees.

The company was founded by Vikram Akula, who has been named one of the world's most influential people by Time magazine.

Source : Reuters India

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