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December 24, 2009 Reuters India

Franklin Templeton PE puts Rs 60 cr in GKC Projects

GKC Projects is involved in construction services in areas such as highways, irrigation, power, water supply, etc.

Franklin Templeton, India’s private equity arm, has invested up to Rs 60 crore in Hyderabad-based GKC Projects Pvt Ltd, involved in construction services in areas such as highways, irrigation, industrial infrastructure/power and water supply projects.

The company, earlier known as Gokulkrishna Constructions Pvt Ltd, plans to expand to areas such as railways, mining and BOT projects. The funds will be used to execute current projects and enable acquisition of larger projects. Veda Corporate Advisors was the banker to GKC on the deal.

GKC follows a series of other EPC (engineer, procure, construct) companies that got funding in Hyderabad. The largest one was Soma Enterprises which got $101 million from 3i India Infrastructure fund, while smaller players like Totem Infrastructure got funding from Aquarius Investment Advisors, Vishwa Infrastructure Services from Axis PE and Saisudhir Infrastructures from BTS India and VenturEast.

The investment in GKC Projects comes from Franklin Templeton Private Equity Strategy, a private equity portfolio managed by Franklin Templeton India and advised by Darby Asia Investors (India) Ltd.

Darby is the private equity affiliate of Franklin Templeton, which raised an India-dedicated fund of Rs 630 crore last year with Franklin Templeton India. The fund is eyeing deals in infrastructure, manufacturing, and consumer goods, and in related sectors.