Larsen & Toubro (L&T), the country's largest engineering and construction company, has decided to get aggressive and seek to influence the decisions of the government-appointed board of directors of Satyam Computer Services, the software services firm embattling fallouts from the over Rs 7,000-crore fraud perpetrated by its founders, the now disgraced B Ramalinga Raju family.
L&T, which also has a information technology subsidiary called L&T Infotech, has bought an additional 8 per cent stake in block deals to raise its stake in Satyam to 12 per cent. This makes L&T the single largest shareholder in Satyam and significant enough for the Satyam board to take note of. Other major stakeholders in Satyam include Aberdeen, Fidelity, Lazard and JP Morgan, but all of them hold stakes in single digits.
An L&T spokesperson told Hindustan times “the buy was targeted at increasing our capability to influence the Satyam board’s decision to a major extent.” The company had earlier denied reports of a ‘presentation to the Satyam board by its top management’.
In a separate development, Tech Mahindra, the IT arm of the Mahindra & Mahindra Group, has expressed continued interest in Satyam “provided all legal hurdles are cleared and we get the correct valuation”.
Sanjay Kalra, president, Tech Mahindra said his company was watching developments at Satyam, and given the correct climate, they would be interested. Tech Mahindra is looking at increasing the ambit of their technology capabilities, he added. Satyam had earlier denied reports of a possible merger of its telecom business with Tech Mahindra.