Private equity (PE) and venture capital (VC) investments touched a record USD 7 billion in the month of March, according to EY’s Private Equity Monthly Deal Tracker.
At USD 7 billion, the deal activity last month was 30% higher compared to the previous high of USD 5.4 billion recorded in August 2017, Livemint reported. The first quarter has turned out to be the best ever three-month period with PE/VC investments worth USD 11.4 billion.
The number of deals increased by 44% against a year ago, with 89 deals in March 2019 compared to 62 in March 2018.
As many as 13 deals worth USD 100 million accounted for USD 6 billion in March 2019. Infrastructure was the top sector with USD 2.6 billion in investments in March 2019.
“The Indian PE/VC industry is off to a very strong start with $11.4 billion of PE/VC investments in Q1, eclipsing the previous Q1 high (2018) by 37% on the back of strong investment flows recorded in March 2019 at $7 billion (61% of all investments received in Q1 2019). March 2019 saw hectic deal activity both in investments and exits in infrastructure and real estate asset. With large global buyouts, sovereign and pension funds becoming more active investors in the Indian PE/VC sector, there is increasing interest in yield-generating assets (roads, pipelines, telecom infrastructure and commercial real estate). Corporates as well as government bodies are looking to monetise passive assets as seen in the Brookfield-RIL pipeline deal," according to Vivek Soni, partner and national leader, private equity services, EY.
Meanwhile, March 2019 saw 13 exits worth USD 465 million, 34% lower compared to last year and the lowest monthly value of exits in 2019. PE/VC exits declined by 30% on a year-on-year basis in March.
“One notable exit event in March 2019 is the successful IPO of India’s maiden REIT offering, backed by Embassy / Blackstone consortium. This is a ‘Lighthouse Event’ for the Indian real estate private equity sector, which over the past 3-4 years, has seen significant amount of PE investment into portfolios of rent generating commercial properties such as office, retail malls and industrial warehousing. Should public market investors continue to show interest in this REIT security that represents a new asset class, it could pave the way for many more REIT listings," Soni said.