Patni Computer files for IPO

CIOL Bureau
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MUMBAI: Patni Computer Services Ltd, India's sixth-largest software services exporter, said that it has filed papers for an initial public offering of 18.72 million shares.

The firm, which is 10 percent owned by General Electric and earns about 45 percent of its revenue from the U.S. conglomerate, said in a late evening statement the offer will include a fresh issue of 13.4 million shares and a sale of 5.32 million shares by existing shareholders.

The share price will be fixed through book-building.

The statement did not indicate when the issue was likely to hit the market.

After the issue, Patni's founders' holding will come down to 51.3 percent from 60.8 percent.

The holding of other key shareholders, which include General Atlantic Mauritius Ltd, GE Capital Mauritius Equity Investment and GE APC Technology Investment II (Mauritius), will fall to 33.7 percent from 39.2 percent.

The funds raised through the IPO will be used to develop infrastructure and enhance geographic coverage through strategic acquisitions and investments, Patni's chairman Narendra Patni said in the statement.

The Bombay-based Patni had revenues of $188.3 million in 2002, after growing at a compounded annual growth rate of 36.4 percent over the past three years.

More firms are expected to tap the market with IPOs as the booming stock market, and low interest rates, attract investors.

Investors are also eagerly awaiting an IPO by India's largest software services exporter, Tata Consultancy Services.