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Bank of India may divest stake in subsidiaries to raise new capital

Bank of India (BoI) is weighing options to sell stake in some of its subsidiaries to raise new capital, as part of its efforts to deal with bad loans.

"We sold stake in some of the subsidiaries and we are exploring opportunities to divest stake in some other non-core subsidiaries depending on right valuation," BoI Executive Director N Damodaran told Press Trust of India.  

However, Damodaran did not give any details on the timing of the sale and the stake to be sold in the subsidiaries.

Damodaran said: "We are focusing on certain non-core subsidiaries to divest with an aim to unlock capital…It will also help the bank get into the black this financial year (FY).”

By expanding retail lending and reducing its exposure to risky corporate loans, the Mumbai-based bank is also planning to rebalance its loan asset portfolio, The Economic Times reported.

For the fiscal year ending March 2017, the lender reported a loss of Rs 1,558 crore compared to a net loss of Rs 6,089 crore in the previous year.

In 2016, Bank of India sold 18% stake in Star Union Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company to its Japanese partner for Rs 540 crore in a deal that valued the company at Rs 3,000 crore.

Earlier this year, the bank divested its entire 5% stake in credit information firm TransUnion CIBIL to TransUnion International for Rs 190.62 crore.

Its subsidiaries and associates including BOI AXA Investment Managers, Central Depository Services (India), National Collateral Management Services, SME Rating Agency of India, BOI Shareholding, BOI Merchant Bankers, STCI Finance Limited and ASREC (India).