Here is a story for future investigations to dig deep. People looking at Baba Ramdev through the prism of Patanjali are missing the forests for the trees. He is now playing through a listed company he bought in a sham of a transaction. Here is the story:
- Ruchi Soya went into insolvency as many banks led by SBI made claims of Rs12,146 crores.
- SBI had the highest exposure of Rs1,816 crore but agreed to settle it at 883 crores, thus writing off Rs.933 Crores in all. Other banks, including PNB, CBI etc. also took a haircut in their recoveries from Ruchi Soya.
- Having reduced the liabilities to less than half, only two bidders remained – Patanjali and Adani Wilmar.
- In January 2019, Adanis having bid initially, withdrew, leaving only Patanjali in the race.
- The bid of Patanjali was Rs. 4350 crores of which 3250 crores would be funded by banks led by SBI that took a hit earlier.
- Now we have a situation where the banks that wrote off massive amounts are now funding another loan to Patanjali to acquire a company where they had booked losses.
- SBI, which wrote off 930 crores and recovered just 883 crores, funded Rs.1200 crores.
- When Patanjali completed the acquisition, Ruchi Soya shares were around Rs 3.50 per share. Today, the share is priced at Rs. 1195. That is 341 times the value or 34100% growth, in 15 Months.
- As I write this, Ruchi Soya, a company that Patanjali acquired in Dec 2019 with a 1000 crore of own money is now valued at Rs.35,360 Crores.
- Ruchi Soya, now owned 99.5% by Patanjali, would soon be coming up with a follow on public offer to raise 4000 Crores by diluting less than 15% to repay the debt of 3250 crores which was 75% of the investment to acquire Ruchi Soya by Patanjali. They also plan to raise more funds through equity dilution over coming two years.
This is the story of India and crony capitalism – Of SBI and our PSU banks, of the bidding jugalbandi of Adani and Ramdev, marketing jugalbandi of Ruchi Soya and Patanjali.
Ramdev is no longer just Patanjali. He is Ruchi Soya worth 35000 Crores.