The history of hostile acquisitions in India has been
fraught with unsuccessful bids. Listed companies have been wary
and sought both traditional and new defence mechanisms to
protect themselves against hostile approaches. The structural
measures adopted by target companies (and their promoters) have
played a part in averting hostile bids. India's regulatory
framework, and nationalist sentiment, has also helped create an
environment hostile to hostile offers.
With liberalisation, however, a number of these
environmental barriers are being dismantled. Indian companies
may soon face a wave of hostile acquisitions.
India has not provided a great stage for hostile acquirers.
The ratio of successes to attempts demonstrates their limited
precedent. Notable attempts include the ITC bid for East India
Hotels, Lord Swaraj Paul's bid for Escorts and DCM, and ICI and
Atul Choksey's bid to acquire Asian Paints; Alcan and
Sterlite's bid for Hindalco, India Cement's bid for Raasi
Cement, and Dalmia...