Tata Motors raises $750 mln to pay down debt | autos | Hindustan Times
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Tata Motors raises $750 mln to pay down debt

India's Tata Motors has raised $750 million from international markets to help pay for its 2008 acquisition of Jaguar and Land Rover from Ford Motor Co, the company said on Friday.

autos Updated: Oct 09, 2009 16:03 IST

India's Tata Motors has raised $750 million from international markets to help pay for its 2008 acquisition of Jaguar and Land Rover from Ford Motor Co, the company said on Friday. Tata Motors said it's issuing 29.9 million new shares, worth $375 million, in the form of Global Depository Shares at $12.54 per share _ a 1.5 per cent discount to Thursday's closing price. It is raising another $375 million through 4 per cent coupon convertible notes due in 2014, at $100,000 per note.

Tata Motors initially wanted to raise funds from international markets to roll over a $3 billion bridge loan it had taken out to pay for the acquisition of the two money-losing luxury auto brands and which came due in June. But it was forced to postpone the offering because of the global recession.

Now Tata Motors has joined a growing list of Indian companies that have taken advantage of recent market buoyancy to raise funds. So far this year and excluding the Tata Motors offering, Indian firms have raised almost $17 billion in equity _ about three times what they did during the same period last year, according to Thomson Reuters.

Vice chairman Ravi Kant called the offering "a reaffirmation of investor confidence in the automotive sector."

Tata Motors, whose growing debt burden has ratings agencies worried, said it would use the new funding to repay part of the $700 million in debt still outstanding from the $2.3 billion Jaguar and Land Rover acquisition, as well as for capital expenditure, working capital, and other general expenses.

At the end of June, Tata Motors had about $5.2 billion in consolidated debt, a large part of it from buying and sustaining Jaguar and Land Rover.

The new equity issue alone represents a dilution of 5.8 per cent of tradable equity shares, according to company data. The stock fell 5.7 per cent, to 553.8 rupees a share, in afternoon trade on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while the benchmark Sensex index was done 1.1 per cent, at 16,655.8 points.

The company said the offering was fully subscribed in less than an hour. Both instruments are scheduled to be listed on the Luxembourg Stock Exchange around Oct 15.