Essar to exit BPO business with sale of Aegis

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Essar Group will exit the BPO (business process outsourcing) business with the sale of Aegis, its BPO unit to Capital Square Partners. The deal, estimated at $300 million or Rs.1,950 crore would bring an end to Essar’s association with the BPO business, which began in 2004.

Essar Group will raise $300 million through the sale of Aegis to Capital Square Partners.

Capital Square Partners is a Singapore-based private equity firm with investments across segments like healthcare, media & technology, telecommunications, and business services.

Essar Group, led by the Ruia brothers, Shashi and Ravi Ruia has a debt of around $12 billion or Rs.88,000 crore. The company will use the proceeds of this sale to clear some of this debt, according to inside sources.

Both the companies will complete formalities by June. Aegis is currently operational in 10 countries, namely India, Malaysia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Australia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Argentina, Peru, and UK. It employs over 40,000 individuals in 47 centres, with a revenue of around $500 million last year, with India accounting for 25 per cent of this.

Essar Group previously sold units of Aegis in USA, Philippines, and Costa Rica for $610 million. France’s Teleperformance purchased it in 2014, as Essar looked to monetise investments after they became established entities.

Officials at Essar stated that there would be no change in management following the sale formalities. Essar’s AGC Holdings Limited, Mauritius, is handling the sale, with it selling 100 per cent in the parent company of Aegis, ESM Holdings Limited, Mauritius to Capital Square Partners.

Essar is also in talks to sell its refining unit, Essar Oil to Russian company Rosneft. The deal, estimated to be valued at $12.9 billion would see Essar reduce its debt by $5 billion.

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