AIG plans expansion in India


Kolkata : US-based financial services major American International Group (AIG) has planned to significantly expand its line of businesses in India, a company official said here Wednesday.

Support TwoCircles

The firm is keen to enter the distressed asset investment, mortgage guarantee and infrastructure investment businesses in the country by 2007, said Sunil Mehta, AIG’s country head and chief executive.

AIG is in the preliminary stage of evaluating various options of entry into the sectors and has already started expanding its consumer finance business in India.

“Initially, the group would bring in personal loans, consumer durable loans and home loans for the Indian market. It would be followed by auto loans and credit cards from the AIG stable,” said Mehta.

AIG so far has invested over $450 million in private equity in India with a large exposure to infrastructure like telecom, manufacturing, retailing and IT.

The firm has also signed an agreement to acquire Weizmann Homes, a housing finance company. The transaction is expected to close in April.

AIG hopes that the acquisitions would provide it with the requisite foothold in the country’s market.

Mehta said though the basic capital of the company would remain $50 million, “we would expand it along with our operations”.

AIG is also developing 2.5 million square feet of commercial space with a green building over a 10-acre plot at Rajarhat township in Kolkata.

By 2007 end, AIG is planning to operate in 325-350 premises in 140 cities in India. The group would have 6,800 employees by the end of the year.