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UK top choice for Indian offshore acquisitions, says research

The UK is the top destination for offshore acquisitions by Indian companies, according to research from financial and business adviser Grant Thornton.

The India Watch research monitored UK and Indian business relationships through cross border M&A trends and the performance of Indian companies on the London Stock Exchange. It revealed that Indian businesses are now spending more on buying businesses in the UK than in any other country.

According to the analysis, the sale of Jaguar and Rover to Tata Motors helped boost the total value of Indian acquisitions to £1.52 billion in the first half of the year, compared with £930 million in the US and £561 million in the Netherlands.

However, India still made more US acquisitions with 41 American businesses purchased in the first half of 2008, compared with 20 UK companies.

UK company acquisitions in India totalled at £487 million for the first part of 2008 down on last year’s £9.56 billion.

Grant Thornton’s South Asia Group head Anuj Chande says: “Indian businesses are looking primarily to buy brands and established distribution networks. If a UK brand with an international profile is looking for buyers, expect interest from acquisitive India companies. This is a nation forging ahead with buy-and-build on a massive scale.”

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