L&T enters financial services with mutual fund operations; plans insurance foray

Engineering and construction group Larsen & Toubro Limited (L&T) today formally announced the launch of its asset management operations and has announced major expansion plans for its financial services network with a planned entry in the insurance business.

The $8.5 billion L&T, which bought DBS Cholamandalam for Rs45 crore and renamed it L&T Mutual Funds for the mutual fund business, is hoping to enter the insurance business soon, its whole-time director and chief financial officer YM Deosthalee said. (See: L&T Finance may buy stake in mutual fund business)

Further, commenting on the acquisition, Deosthalee said, "The target is to be among the top ten funds in India. We need to create an image of a stable and strong fund among customers."

Later, in an interview on CNBC-TV18, Deosthalee said L&T expects to list the financial services arm this year.

L&T Finance Limited (LTF) completed the acquisition of DBS Cholamandalam Asset Management Company Limited (DCAM) on receipt of regulatory approvals and completion of exit option to be provided to the investors in the various schemes of DBS-Chola Mutual Fund.

The AMC has since been renamed as L&T Investment Management Limited while the fund house has been renamed L&T Mutual Fund. The fund house, with assets under management (AUM) of Rs2,634 crore (as of 18 February 2010), offers 18 schemes spread over equity, fixed income and liquid funds.