Reuters: India’s Balaji Wafers in Talks with PEs to Raise $100-125 Mln-Sources

(Reuters) – Indian snack maker Balaji Wafers is in separate talks with private-equity funds, including Blackstone Group and Actis, to raise between $100 million and $125 million, two sources with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters.

The company has hired EY to find an investor, said the sources, who declined to be named as they were not authorised to speak to the media.

Chandu Virani, managing director of Balaji Wafers, confirmed that the company was in talks with private-equity investors, but declined to give details.

“We are looking for growth capital investment and are in talks. I cannot give further details or a time frame,” Virani told Reuters. He said Balaji Wafers is the No.1 maker of savoury Indian snacks, called ‘namkeen’, in the western states of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh.

Blackstone and Actis declined to comment.

Private equity investments in India were up 17.7 percent to $2.3 billion during the second quarter of this year compared to the same period last year, according to Venture Intelligence, an industry tracker.