Providence Equity exits Idea Cellular

US-based private equity (PE) player Providence Equity Partners sold 3.3 per cent of its stake in telecom provider Idea Cellular through block deal on Tuesday. The total value of the deal was Rs 1,278 crore and multiple investors including Goldman Sachs picked up the stake, BSE data showed. This stake sale marks complete exit of Providence from Idea Cellular. Shares of Idea closed at Rs 115.45 apiece in the BSE, up by Rs 0.85 or 0.74 per cent. The deal has taken place at a time when Idea is in talks with its peer Vodafone on a possible merger. The news of possible merger led to spiraling of Idea stock. The scrips have surged nearly 65 per cent since its low in January.Providence had bought 15 per cent in Idea Cellular in 2006 for around Rs 1,800 crore through its investment arm – P5 Asia Investment (Mauritius). Since then, it has diluted its stake in tranches. The last tranche was in June 2016, when the PE investor sold 3.3 per cent stake through a block deal worth Rs 1,375 crore. …