Engineering and construction firm Larsen & Toubro Ltd has raised its stake in troubled software firm Satyam Computers to 12 per cent, from 4 per cent.
Y M Deosthalee chief financial officer, L&T said. that the company had not asked for a board seat and the fresh stake acquisition was aimed at protecting its interest in the Hyderabd IT firm.
Earlier this week, L&T chairman A M Naik met the company afgfairs minister Prem Chand Gupta and minister of state in the Prime Minister's Office Prithviraj Chauhan, Deosthalee had a meeting with LIC officials in Mumbai.
If L&T increases its stake to 15 per cent then it will have to make an open offer for an additional 20 per cent shares from the general public.
Meanwhile Phaneesh Murthy of iGATE Technologies said his company was open to buying Satyam.
In an interview with CNBC TV18 he said, "In spite of all of the problems of Satyam there are good assets in Satyam. They have good customers that they are working with. There are good employees who are working on many of these projects and many of these accounts. So those are the real tangible assets of Satyam. In addition to the fact that there is some land and so on, that's also a real tangible asset but the primary assets as an IT company that we look for are the accounts and the people who are working on this.
"So my argument is that Satyam might have two - three paths presumably available to it. One could be to split the company up, auction of certain accounts and raise enough capital to keep the company going because it is clear that raising capital right now with the unknown liabilities is quite difficult. So they might be forced to do this in the interim short-run to raise enough capital to keep the rest of the company going.
"Second option is to sell the whole company, for that of course it's going to be a slightly longer-time story because until somebody understands what the financials are. Of course, there is a question of unknown liabilities. However, I do believe in this case, it's also a question of unknown revenues because nobody knows what the revenues of this company are. So that's going to be a longer-term story because the auditors have to get into to some significant amount of work, etc.
"Third, even if they go down their path one still needs to have access to fair amount of capital to make this work in a reasonable manner. So I would say that there are options available and the board is probably going to come out with their strategic evaluation and decide what's going to happen.
"Therefore, at the moment we are just waiting and watching and seeing when they come out with their evaluation and direction then based on the direction that they set we would probably either dive in or stay on the sidelines, based on the direction that they come out with."
Commenttors say L&T increasing its stake at just about the time iGATE has expressed its interest in Satyam is significant.