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Report: KKR eyes controlling stake in India's Aadhar Housing Finance

New York-based KKR & Co. is in discussions to buy a controlling stake in India-based Aadhar Housing Finance Ltd., Mint reported Oct. 18, citing two people aware of the matter.

The talks are at an exploratory stage, the sources said, with one saying the private equity giant is likely to buy the stake at a discount to Aadhar Housing Finance's current price-to-book value.

Wadhawan Global Capital Pvt. Ltd., Dewan Housing Finance Corp. Ltd. and members of the Wadhawan family own a total of nearly 79% stake in Aadhar Housing Finance, according to latest corporate filings. Meanwhile, World Bank investment arm International Finance Corp. held a 16.91% stake in the company as of March 31.

A spokesperson for KKR declined to comment. A spokesperson for Wadhawan Global Capital said it has been planning an IPO or a strategic sale of the unit for some time now to "unlock value," the publication said.

The development comes as Dewan Housing Finance has lost over 40% of its market value since Sept. 19 on concerns over the nonbanking finance company sector due to the tightening of liquidity in the short-term money market, among others. This also comes amid KKR's interest to purchase portfolios from Indian nonbanking finance companies and make acquisitions of Indian nonbank lenders and their employee teams.