Citigroup to buy out Indian BPO firm for $127m

Citigroup to buy out Indian BPO firm for $127m

Citigroup is to take full control of Mumbai-based BPO services firm e-Serve International by acquiring the 55.6% it didn't already own for $127 million.

E-Serve informed the Bombay Stock Exchange on Monday that Citigroup intended to acquire the remaining part of the firm. The company has 5000 employees and provides call centre, transaction processing and data management services to Citigroup businesses in over 25 countries.

Citigroup currently owns 44% of e-Serve through its Overseas Investment unit and says it will offer 800 rupees per share for the remaining stake. In a statement, Citigroup says the price "will provide e-Serve's shareholders with an opportunity to exit from a relatively illiquid investment that has appreciated substantially in recent years".

Shares in e-Serve surged 27% to 800 rupees on Monday on the back of the announcement, valuing the company at about $227 million. The stock closed at 784 rupees, up 154 from the previous close.

The news follows an announcement by IBM last week that it was buying India's third-largest back-office firm, Daksh e-services, in a deal estimated to be worth between $150 million to $200 million.

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