Indian real estate company plans nation’s largest IPO

Indian real estate and construction giant DLF Universal Ltd. expects to raise more than $2.33 billion through an initial public offering slated for June.

The New Delhi-based company — which split its 10-rupee shares into five shares of two rupees each on April 20 — will issue 200 million shares, or 10% of the company, Chief Financial Officer Ramesh Sanka announced after April shareholders the meeting.

The nation’s largest IPO to date was by the government-run Oil & Natural Gas Corp. in 2004, raising approximately $2.33 billion.

DLF, which stands for Delhi Land & Finance, will use IPO proceeds to fund future projects. The 60-year-old company has developed townships, shopping malls, hotels and infrastructure projects and has indicated an interest in expanding its hotel holdings. DLF is in the market to buy 25,000 rooms or roughly 100 hotels in the next five to 10 years.

DLF will probably joint venture with international hotel developers and operators as it builds its hotel portfolio, DLF Director Shakti Singh told a CNBC television affiliate in India.

DSP Merrill Lynch Ltd., Kotak Securities Ltd., UBS AG, JM Morgan Stanley Securities Pvt. Ltd., Enam Securities, ICICI Securities Ltd. and Citibank will manage the IPO.

DLF plans to privately place 35 million shares prior to the public offering, and will reserve 3.5 million shares for employee stock options.

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