Creador backs Indian water tank maker Vectus

20.06.14 / Author: Tim Burroughs, Asian Venture Capital Journal

Southeast Asia and India-focused GP Creador has paid INR1 billion ($16.7 million) for a minority stake in Vectus Industries, an Indian manufacturer of plastic water tanks and pipes.

According to a source familiar with the situation, the private equity firm will own about 20% of the company. The capital will be used to support Vectus’ expansion plans.

Vectus primarily serves the domestic plumbing and sanitation sector, with 11 manufacturing units and distribution agreements with 400 dealers nationwide. The company reported revenues of $66.7 million for the 12 months ended March 2014, up 34% over from three years ago. Profit has grown 45% over the same period.

The customer base is half property developers and half general retail. Vectus is benefiting from the shift in the housing sector from steel to plastic piping as well as urbanization and rising household incomes. In a country where most cities only receive water supply for 2-8 hours a day, more people are investing in domestic water storage.

“Even in rural villages, people have more money so they are buying water tanks where previously they wouldn’t have had the money to do that,” Brahmal Vasudevan, CEO of Creador, told AVCJ.

Vectus was established in 2004 by Ashish Baheti and Atul Ladha, who between them have more than 23 years of experience in the retail plastic products business. They started of manufacturing water tanks but moved into piping because consumers tend to buy both types of product from the same retail point. The company distributes water tanks under the Vectus, Ganga and Waterwell brands, and pipes and fittings under the Vectus brand.

This is Creador’s fourth investment in India across both its funds. It is also the fifth deal in total from Fund II. The firm has raised $220 million so far and the fund is expected to close in August, on or above the $250 million target.