Providence selling stake in India’s Idea for $190 mln: Reuters

A subsidiary of Providence Equity Partners is selling its 3.3 percent stake in India’s third-biggest mobile phone carrier Idea Cellular Ltd for at least $190 million, according to a deal term sheet seen by Reuters on Monday.

The Providence unit, P5 Asia Investments (Mauritius) Ltd, will sell about 120 million shares in the mobile carrier on Tuesday in a price range of 106.5 rupees ($1.60) to 114.55 rupees a share, the term sheet showed.

The lower end of the range is a 7 percent discount to Idea’s closing price of 114.55 rupees on the National Stock Exchange on Monday and would value the 3.3 percent stake at nearly $192 million.

Idea, part of the Aditya Birla conglomerate and about 20-percent owned by Malaysia’s Axiata, is in talks over a merger with Vodafone’s Indian subsidiary, potentially creating the country’s biggest phone carrier.

Idea shares have surged nearly 47 percent since the two sides confirmed merger talks on Jan. 30.

Terms of the sale were not known and the person said any announcement was weeks away.