Canadian pension fund picks up 3.24% in Kotak Bank

Within days of it being told to cut promoter holding, private sector lender Kotak Mahindra Bank today said a promoter group entity has sold 3.24 per cent stake to the Canadian Canada Pension Plan Investment Board at a premium of over 3 per cent to trading price.

"It was a bulk deal which happened on the exchanges. We have been told that the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board has picked up 25 million shares in the bank...We are very pleased at this," the bank's head of group strategy Paul Parambi told PTI.

The Board paid Rs 880 per share as against the prevailing price of Rs 850-855 on the exchanges, he said.

The Uday Kotak-led bank scrip was trading at Rs 862.60 per piece on the BSE at 1301 hrs, up 0.31 per cent to yesterday's close, with the 30-share benchmark being down marginally.

The stake sale by Kotak Trustee Company reduces the promoter shareholding to 40.33 per cent, which is slightly above the 40 per cent mark recommended by RBI to be achieved by September this year.

"The present sale by the promoters helps us substantially meet the RBI requirement for promoter dilution by September 30, 2014," Parambi said.

The announcement comes three days after the lender said it has been asked by the sector regulator Reserve Bank of India to cut the promoter shareholding to 40 per cent by September and to 30 per cent by December.

The RBI wants promoters in private sector banks to scale down their holding to 10 per cent in order to have a diverse ownership base at lenders. Each bank has submitted a plan under which it will be bringing down the shareholding.

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