Mallya plans to sell up to 49 pc stake in Whyte & Mackay | business | Hindustan Times
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Mallya plans to sell up to 49 pc stake in Whyte & Mackay

business Updated: Feb 09, 2009 18:35 IST

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Liquor baron Vijay Mallya is mulling to divest around 49 per cent stake in United Spirits Ltd's UK-based wholly-owned subsidiary Whyte & Mackay (W&M), which it acquired for 595 million pounds in May 2007.

The move is part of the USL's plan to raise cash, including introducing a strategic partner with a possible sale of up to 14.9 per cent from its treasury stocks, for which it had talks with world's biggest spirit maker Diageo in New York recently.

"The divestment of up to 49 per cent in Whyte & Mackay was always part of United Spirits Ltd's de-leveraging plan," UB Group Spokesperson told PTI.

He, however, declined to disclose further details saying, "We are not in a position to offer any further comment except to say that we expect the value to reflect the substantial appreciation in whisky inventory."

Industry sources, however, said USL is trying to reduce debts on its books and retire them, which it had borrowed at the time of acquiring W&M.

USL is expecting to cash in on the appreciation of Scotch whisky inventory held by W&M in the last 12 months.

Earlier, the company had reported an increase of 25.5 per cent in the value of Scotch inventory at 456 million pounds since its acquisition.