Coromandel International acquires majority stake in drone company for Rs 204 crore

Chennai (IANS) Fertiliser major Coromandel International Ltd is acquiring a majority stake in a city based drone company Dhaksha Unmanned Systems Private Ltd for a cash consideration of Rs 204.24 crore.

Coromandel International, part of the industrial conglomerate Murugappa Group, will acquire the stakes through its wholly owned subsidiary Coromandel Technology Ltd in a two part transaction.

According to Coromandel International, its subsidiary Coromandel Technology will acquire a 32.68 per cent stake in the Rs 1.31 lakh equity based Dhaksha and another 18.34 per cent stake from Dare Ventures Ltd, another wholly owned subsidiary.

The turnover of Dhaksha for FY 2021-22 was Rs 4.52 crore.

The acquisition is likely to be completed during the second quarter of FY 2023-24.

According to Coromandel International, the stake acquisition will facilitate the company’s presence in the fast-growing unmanned aerial systems (UAS) segment where drones and its applications are expected to exponentially grow and reach a global market size of $90 billion by 2030.

“This investment follows the company’s recent announcement of its entry into Specialty Chemicals and Contract Manufacturing (CDMO) businesses,” Coromandel International said.

Arun Alagappan, Executive Vice Chairman, Coromandel International Limited said, “We are delighted to partner with Dhaksha having been associated from the early start up stage and accelerate its growth journey to become a player of scale. Our investment in Dhaksha marks a significant foray into next generation cutting edge UAS technology applications.”

“In addition to driving resource efficiency and sustainable practices in agriculture, Dhaksha drones have high potential in defence and enterprise applications. The recent decision by Government of India towards liberalising the policy for export of drones meant for civilian use will help in further tapping the export potential for Dhaksha’s drones. We are committed to drive Atmanirbhar Bharat vision in drones manufacturing and intend to improve domestic value creation opportunities and build frontier technologies in this space.”

The Coromandel International said Dhaksha provides UAS technology solutions across agriculture, defence, surveillance and enterprise applications. It also offers remote pilot training services and has trained over 950 pilots till date.

“Currently, it is the only player in the country to receive type certificates from DGCA for 3 drone models in medium and small categories for agriculture and surveillance applications. Besides operating in the electric drone segment, it is the only player in India to offer type certified petrol engine based Hybrid Agri Drones,” Coromandel International said.

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