Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure fund buys stake in LEAP India for $25m

Photographer: Mark Kauzlarich/Bloomberg

Morgan Stanley and LEAP (Leading Enterprise in Advanced Pooling) have announced that Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure, an infrastructure-focused fund, has invested Rs180 crore ($25 million) to acquire a stake in LEAP India.

Founded by Sunu Mathew in 2013, LEAP is India’s largest pallet pooling company with an asset pool of approx. 4 million units including pallets, foldable large containers, crates and utility boxes.

“This is the single largest round of investment raised by LEAP. Now with Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure as a partner, LEAP aims to achieve a total asset pool of 6 million and provide technologically advanced products to the market,” said Sunu Mathew, Founder Promoter and Managing Director of LEAP India.

LEAP’s business is linked to India’s consumption story and primarily caters to fast moving consumer goods (FMCG), consumer durables, beverages, e -commerce, retail, auto and auto-component manufacturing sectors.

The timber pallets and plastic utility boxes are used by companies in FMCG and beverages sectors. LEAP provides these assets on lease and helps in integrating the supply chain across suppliers, manufacturers and retailers. LEAP has a large footprint in India catering to 600 plus customers and 7000 plus touch-points from a pan-India network of 18 warehouses.

“Given its unique business model and the criticality of its assets, for both storage and transportation, LEAP has been able to navigate the COVID-19 situation successfully and has emerged stronger with an increased market share. In terms of market opportunity, India is hugely under-penetrated in terms of palletization,” said Shyamsundar Gurumoorthy, Managing Director and Co-Head of Morgan Stanley India Infrastructure.

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