51 stake in Haldirams
51 stake in Haldirams

Tata Group’s consumer unit is in talks to buy at least 51% of popular snack food maker Haldiram’s but is not comfortable with the $10-billion valuation sought, said a report on Wednesday.

If successfully concluded, a deal would see the Indian conglomerate directly compete with Pepsi and billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Retail.

Tata Group’s consumer unit is in talks to buy at least 51% of popular snack food maker Haldiram’s but is not comfortable with the $10-billion valuation sought, said a report on Wednesday.

If successfully concluded, a deal would see the Indian conglomerate directly compete with Pepsi and billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Retail.

The report quoted a source as saying that Tata wanted to buy more than 51% but has told Haldiram’s that its “ask is very high”.

Tata Group Looking To Buy 51% Stake in Haldiram's: Report
Tata Group Looking To Buy 51% Stake in Haldiram’s: Report

The potential acquisition represents an exciting opportunity for Tata, the source said, adding: “Tata (Consumer) is seen as a tea company. Haldiram’s is huge in the consumer space and has a wide market share.”

A spokesperson for Tata Consumer Products said it “does not comment on market speculation”. Haldiram’s Chief Executive Krishan Kumar Chutani and Bain declined to comment.

Family-run Haldiram’s traces its origins back to a tiny shop founded in 1937 and is well-known for its crispy “bhujia” snack sold for as little as Rs 10 across mom-and-pop stores.

It has almost 13% share of India’s $6.2-billion savoury snack market, according to Euromonitor International. Pepsi, famous for its Lay’s chips, also has around 13%.

Haldiram’s snacks are also sold in overseas markets like Singapore and the United States. The company has around 150 restaurants selling local food, sweets and western cuisine.