Kishore Chhabria-led Allied Blenders & Distillers (ABD) has roped in Anupam Datta as chief executive, marking yet another step towards its goal of stock market listing. Datta replaces Deepak Roy who was heading the UB Group-competitor so far. Roy, who holds 5% stake in ABD, will continue to remain with the liquor company – the largest homegrown player – handling strategy and planning aspects of the business as well as the IPO. The company has hired JM Financial as the lead manager for the eventual IPO that could see ABD raise as much as INR1,000 crore from the primary market.
Despite the preparations, the IPO is far and will take at least 12 months. It is noteworthy that ABD is yet to file paperwork with SEBI in this connection.
We are working on it. We should hit the market over the next 12 to 18 months and we plan to raise about INR550-750 crore. But if we continue our breakneck growth as we have been doing in the past many years, and go ahead with our aggressive expansion plans including some takeovers, then the amount can be up to INR1,000 crore.
– Deepak Roy, executive vice-chairman, ABD
ABD is growing at a consistent pace and according to Roy, it could be on its way to achieve an enterprise value of INR6,000 crore by March 2016. Except a working capital loan of INR550 crore, ABD has no long-term debt on its books. This is a huge positive as it means the company has been funding its expansion through profitability. For the year ended March 2015, ABD posted a growth of 31% to achieve annual revenue of INR2,500 crore. However, this could change in future as the company undertakes bigger expansion projects. With this kind of revenue growth, it is imperative for a company to either raise funds through debt or bring an IPO. In this regard, it will be a big positive to have a seasonal executive at the helm. Prior to joining ABD, Datta was heading Kellogg’s South Africa business.