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India's Adani Ports looks to buy SP Group's Gopalpur port in Odisha - ET

FILE PHOTO: A logo of the Adani Group is seen on a commercial complex in Mumbai

BENGALURU (Reuters) -India's largest private port operator Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone is in early talks to acquire real-estate conglomerate Shapoorji Pallonji Group's (SP Group) Gopalpur port in Odisha for about 11-12 billion rupees ($132-$144 mln), The Economic Times reported on Thursday.

The deal could potentially be Adani Ports' sixth acquisition of a port along India's eastern coast, where it already has about 247 million tonnes of capacity, the newspaper daily added.

The Gopalpur port's enterprise value is 50 billion rupees, and due diligence for its buyout is in process, the ET report said citing people aware of the talks.

The buyout is part of the Gautam Adani-led group's strategy to own ports across the western and eastern water margins.

The Adani Group and SP Group did not immediately respond to Reuters' request for comment.

In August, Deloitte resigned as auditor of Adani Ports, the first such move since U.S. short-seller Hindenburg Research flagged high debt levels and alleged irregularities at the group.

The conglomerate's seven listed firms lost about $150 billion of their combined market capitalisation after the Hindenburg report and have recovered only a part of those losses after paying down some debt.

The Adani Group has denied allegations from Hindenburg.

($1 = 83.3600 Indian rupees)

(Reporting by Manvi Pant in Bengaluru; editing by Eileen Soreng)