16 merchant bankers in race for managing LIC IPO

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs had last month cleared the initial public offering proposal of LIC

As many as 16 merchant bankers are in the race to manage the initial public offering (IPO) of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) — touted to be the biggest share sale in the country’s history.

These bankers will be making a presentation before the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM) spread over 2 days — August 24 and 25.

Seven international bankers, including BNP Paribas, Citigroup Global Markets India and DSP Merrill Lynch Ltd. (now known as BofA Securities), will make presentations on August 24, as per a circular by DIPAM.

Other bankers that will be making presentations on August 24 are — Goldman Sachs (India) Securities, HSBC Securities and Capital Markets (India), JP Morgan India, Nomura Financial Advisory and Securities (India).

On August 25, nine domestic bankers will make a presentation before the officials of DIPAM, which is managing the government’s share sale in LIC. These bankers include Axis Capital Ltd., DAM Capital Advisors Ltd., HDFC Bank Ltd., ICICI Securities Ltd., IIFL Securities Ltd., JM Financial Ltd., Kotak Mahindra Capital Co Ltd., SBI Capital Market Ltd., and Yes Securities India Ltd.

DIPAM had on July 15 invited application for appointment of merchant bankers for LIC IPO, looking to appoint up to 10 Book Running Lead Managers to handle the initial offering as a team. The last date for bidding was August 5.

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs had last month cleared the initial public offering proposal of Life Insurance Corp. of India.

The ministerial panel known as the Alternative Mechanism on Strategic Disinvestment will now decide on the quantum of stake to be divested by the government.

"The potential size of the IPO is expected to be far larger than any precedent in Indian markets," the department had said.

The government had earlier appointed actuarial firm Milliman Advisors LLP India to assess the embedded value of LIC ahead of the initial public offering. Deloitte and SBI Caps have been appointed as pre-IPO transaction advisors.

The listing of LIC will be crucial for the government in meeting its disinvestment target of ₹1.75 lakh crores for 2021-22 (April-March).

So far this fiscal, ₹8,368 crores has been mopped up through minority stake sales in PSU and the sale of SUUTI stake in Axis Bank.

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