Cos can announce abt share-sale via OFS just 1-day in advance

Last Updated: Thursday, May 30, 2013 - 18:30

Mumbai: With few days left to lower promoter holding to 75 per cent in listed private sector firms, Sebi today allowed them to make an announcement for such sale of shares through OFS route just one day in advance.

So far the companies had to announced sale of promoters share to meet the guidelines through Offer-for-Sale (OFS) mechanism at least one trading day prior to the date of sale.

Now, companies can make an announcement about sale of shares through OFS route on Sunday even it is not a trading day.

In a circular, market regulator Sebi (Securities and Exchange Board of India), "seller(s) shall announce the intention of sale of shares at least on the day prior to the offer for sale."

As per Sebi's minimum public shareholding norms, all private sector listed companies need to have at least 25 per cent public shareholding and promoters have been asked to lower their stake to 75 per cent or below by June 3, 2013.

For public sector companies, minimum public shareholding has been fixed at 10 per cent and the deadline is till August 2013. These norms were announced in June, 2010 to ensure that the public investors get a larger presence and help create an equity culture in the country.

In the last two days, promoters of eight firms including Sun TV Network, AstraZeneca Pharma and Jaypee Infratech have offloaded shares worth Rs 900 crore through OFS route on the stock exchanges to meet the Sebi's deadline.

Besides, promoters of nine firms including Adani Enterprises, Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) Ltd, Novartis India, Essar Ports and Essar Shipping have successfully sold their shares, at least four others have lined-up theirs for tomorrow.

To help companies comply with the new public shareholding norms, Sebi last year created two new routes -- offer for sale (OFS) and institutional placement programme (IPP). The regulator also allowed companies to use rights and bonus issue routes to enhance public holding.

Until now, there have been over 50 OFS, eight IPPs and a few bonus issues by Indian firms to pare promoter holdings.


First Published: Thursday, May 30, 2013 - 18:30

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