India’s Raymond bolsters engineering business in $82-million deal

BENGALURU (Reuters) -India’s Raymond said on Friday it would pay 6.82 billion rupees ($82 million) for a majority stake in an auto parts maker, doubling down on its shift away from its once mainstay textiles business into engineering and real estate.

Raymond said it will buy a 59.25% stake in Maini Precision Products Limited (MMPL), merge that with its current engineering units – Ring Plus Aqua Limited and JK Files and Engineering – to form a new unit in which it would hold 66.3%.

Ring Plus and JK Files make automotive and engineering products, while MMPL manufactures aerospace parts as well. Bengaluru-based MPPL has a 70% exports contribution and generated around 7.5 billion rupees in revenue in fiscal 2023.

“This acquisition will catapult the growth of our engineering business and will open new vistas to us for our foray into rapidly growing segments like aerospace, defense, and electric vehicles (EV),” Managing Director Gautam Hari Singhania said.

Earlier this year, Raymond sold its consumer goods segment, which included brands such as the Park Avenue deodorant and Kamasutra condoms, and laid out plans to spin off its textile and apparel business, which has brands like ColorPlus and Park Avenue, into a listed company.

That would leave Mumbai-based Raymond with real estate as its core business, along with interests in engineering business and only denim production left over from its textile business.

Raymond plans to fund the MMPL purchase through a mix of debt and internal accruals. The newly formed engineering unit will be led by Gautam Maini, the founder of MMPL.

Raymond’s shares, which have gained over a quarter in value so far this year, closed 3.3% higher post the deal announcement. ($1 = 83.2600 Indian rupees)

(Reporting by Indranil Sarkar in Bengaluru; Editing by Mrigank Dhaniwala)