United Spirits exits Vijay Mallya-led United Breweries with Rs 872-crore stake sale

New Delhi: Diageo-controlled United Spirits Ltd (USL) has exited from Vijay Mallya-led United Breweries Ltd by selling its entire 3.21% stake in the company for Rs 872 crore.

United Spirits sold its stake to Heineken International BV at a price consideration of Rs 1,030 per share, United Spirits said in a BSE filing.

“…The company has placed an order for sale by way of a block trade on NSE of 85 lakh equity shares held by the company in United Breweries Ltd (consulting 3.21% stake) to Heineken International BV,” it said.

USL further said: “The sale consideration net of brokerage is Rs 872 crore resulting in profit on this transaction.” In November 2012, Diageo had bought a controlling 55% stake in United Spirits Limited (USL), for about USD 3 billion (over Rs 11,000 crore) from the Mallya-promoted UB Group.

Earlier this year, United Spirits asked its erstwhile promoter and current Chairman Vijay Mallya to quit the board alleging fund diversion to the tune of Rs 1,337 crore to Kingfisher and other UB group entities although the liquor baron rejected the demand and the charge.

USL said that following the completion of this sale, it will “hold no shares in United Breweries and will cease to be a promoter of United Breweries”.

The sale is part of the process of monetising non-core assets of the company, USL added.

As per BSE data, as on March 31, 2015, Heineken International and Heineken UK together held 4.81% stake in United Breweries.

United Spirits also received notices from the Ministry of Corporate Affairs and the I-T Department for inspection of its book subsequent to a probe ordered by its new management over alleged irregularities in loans given by it to various companies of Vijay Mallya-led UB Group.

USL’s Board had asked MD and CEO Anand Kripalu to further probe “possible existence of any other transaction of a similar nature” with certain “additional parties”.

Shares of United Breweries were trading at Rs 1,017 apiece on BSE in the late afternoon trade, down 0.86 per cent from their previous close.