By Indulal PM
MUMBAI (Reuters) - Private equity firm KKR & Co LP will pay about $150 million for close to 30 percent of India's Gland Pharma Ltd, two sources with direct knowledge of the matter said, in what would be the U.S. buyout firm's eighth investment in Asia this year.
A deal is likely to be announced in the coming weeks, one of the sources told Reuters on Friday. KKR India Chief Executive Sanjay Nayar declined to comment, while Gland Pharma Vice Chairman Ravi Penmetsa was not available for comment.
New York-based KKR has invested about $1 billion in companies in Asia, including Vietnam, India, China and Japan, over the last four weeks.
In July, KKR raised a record $6 billion Asia fund, aimed at deploying more capital in emerging markets where slowing economic growth has cut overall company valuations.
The deal would be KKR's second sizeable India investment in six months. In April, it bought a controlling stake in India's Alliance Tire Group from Warburg Pincus LLC for what sources said was about $500 million.
Established in 1978, unlisted Gland Pharma makes active pharmaceutical ingredients and injectable formulations for segments including osteoarthritis, anti-coagulants, gynecology, and ophthalmology, according to its website.
Private equity investments in India fell about 67 percent in the September quarter from a year earlier, to about $1.3 billion in 75 deals, according to early data from Venture Intelligence.
(Reporting by Indulal PM, Additional Reporting by Stephen Aldred in HONG KONG; Editing by Sunil Nair and Matt Driskill)