REL Money picks up 26 per cent in NMCE

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Mumbai, July 12 (UNI) Reliance Money, the broking and financial services arm of Reliance Capital, is picking up 26 per cent in Ahmedabad-based National Multi Commodity Exchange (NMCE), subject to regulatory approval.

NMCE may issue fresh shares to enable Reliance Money take stake in the commodity bourse.

Reliance Money CEO Sudip Bandyopadhyay declined to reveal the deal value, other than saying that his firm had bought the stake for 'an attractive valuation'. Reliance Money will get two seats on NMCE board, Mr Bandyopadhyay added.

In February 2008, the Bombay Stock Exchange had bought a 26 per cent stake in NMCE.

According to sources involved in the transaction, the value of that deal was around Rs 40 crore. Market watchers say Reliance Money would have paid roughly the same amount. Mr Bandyopadhyay said his company will use its existing chain of 12,000 outlets to expand its commodity operations. Agri commodities will be the priority, and the company will later look at non-agri commodities like bullion and metals.

According to Mr Bandyopadhyay, post the deal, Central Warehousing (CWC) will hold 26 per cent in NMCE, 7 per cent in Gujarat Agro Industries, 5 per cent in Nafed and 10 per cent in Punjab National Bank.

However, NMCE managing director Kailash Gupta said the shareholding pattern is still being discussed with the shareholders.

Mr Gupta said that its a strategic alliance with Reliance Money, to increase the reach of NMCE through the Reliance Group's network, which also includes the ADAG group's telecom customer base. Actively traded commodities on NMCE include pepper, rubber and raw jute. In rubber, the government has suspended futures trading in May for four months.

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