India Said to Hire Banks for $3.2 Billion Sale in Coal Producer

The Indian government selected banks including Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd., Axis Bank Ltd. and JM Financial Ltd. to help arrange its sale of shares in Coal India Ltd., the world’s largest producer of the fuel, people familiar with the matter said.

ICICI Securities Ltd. and SBI Capital Markets Ltd. were also among those chosen to work on the offering, the people said, asking not to be identified as the information is private. Coal Minister Piyush Goyal said Nov. 18 the government plans to sell 10 percent of Coal India, a stake worth about 212 billion rupees ($3.2 billion) based on its share price Thursday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is banking on asset sales to shrink Asia’s widest budget shortfall to an eight-year low. India has raised 127 billion rupees through share sales in companies including Indian Oil Corp. and Power Finance Corp. of India in the financial year that started in April, according to figures on the Department of Disinvestment’s website.

The banks have bid to receive a nominal fee of 1 rupee each to work on the share sale, the people said. Reuters reported the hiring of the banks earlier.

The government, which holds about 79.7 percent of Coal India, sold a 10 percent stake in January to fetch 225.5 billion rupees. Finance Ministry spokesman D.S. Malik didn’t respond to two calls to his mobile phone seeking comment.

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