Divestment is the process of selling unproductive assets and reallocating money to advanced and productive areas by any entity or federal or state government. Divestment can either have a deep strategic purpose behind it or simply be to meet some specific or basic requirements of the nation or enterprise. It has come to the notice of individuals that the government has adopted most divestments simply to privatize a few assets and areas of concern.
Objectives of Divestment
There are several valid reasons why adopting a divestment policy is the right decision rather than continuing with a handful of assets. The goals of divestment can either be met by selling or a spin-off. Numerous government agendas are attached to it, for example, raising funds or a huge step towards privatization. Divestment is a well-thought plan, and the objectives related to it are discussed before implementing it.
- Relaxing the State from Liabilities: Huge debts and liabilities lead to distress in a nation. The first step for an entity to function properly is discarding any financial burdens.
- Stepping Towards Modernization: Every nation demands modernization, and the divestment of resources is a stepping stone.
- Helping Towards Competing: Competing in the global market is one of the biggest reasons for divestment. There is tough competition today, and it becomes essential to give divestment at least a thought and not stick to age-old conservative thoughts.
- Depoliticising Non-Essential Things: Shifting the political power to more essential things leads to growth and development. The authority of not-so-essential stuff can be given to the private sector easily.
- Reducing the Financial Burden on the Government: Before the introduction of divestment or privatization, the government faced a huge monetary responsibility, and sometimes even the government was incapable of providing so many funds.
Advantages of Divestment
The divestment comes with many added advantages, including paying off the debt. Mainly it shifts the government funds from a less important sector to a more important area of priority which leads to huge benefits for a nation, such as health. Lets us discuss a few advantages:
- Adopting Advanced Assets: Letting go of old and unproductive assets leads to adopting technologically advanced instruments for the betterment of the nation or an entity. The government wishes to adopt the same assets as a technologically advanced nation.
- Liberating Non-Performing Assets: All non-performing assets or loans are relieved when a divestment policy is agreed upon. Non-performing assets are hindrances in the growth process of a company or a government.
- Competing in the Market: To compete globally, funding better assets is the utmost essential practice. One can’t compete with the lack of resources or efficient assets.
- Reducing its Debts: All kinds of debts or liabilities a company or a government is burdened with vanishes in the prospect of divestment. Debt greatly hinders a nation’s growth and leads to income reduction.
- Reallocating Resources to Priority Areas: It is important to identify areas needing more importance and funding and invest in those. To invest in those sectors, it is important to disinvest in non-essential areas.
Disadvantages of Divestment
Every policy has its own shortcomings and drawbacks which cannot be escaped. One of the biggest drawbacks of divestment is having the least shares in profitable companies. Sometimes divestment can also lead to a threat to national security, and privatization can cause inclusive growth. Accordingly, divestment comes with its own set of cons that we will discuss now:
- Keeping the Public's Safety at Stake: Disinvesting is another term for privatization. The private sector might not give much importance to the opinions and safety of individuals compared to government employees, which can pose a big threat.
- Jeopardizing Important Assets in Divestment: Sometimes, some essential assets of a nation are sacrificed to obtain funds to repay debts, but this practice can backfire on a nation badly.
- Establishing Monopolies in Divestment: There is a huge possibility that private monopolies can come into practice. Monopolies can lead to reverse growth in this scenario, and the gap between rich and poor will increase.
Different Methods of Divestment
There are several ways or methods through which an enterprise or the government can carry out divestment. There are countless strategies available to the government that it can implement from time to time to move forward towards more and more divestment. Selling the equity at some predetermined prices is an example the government usually adopts.
- Adopting the Warehousing Method: This involves shifting a property or an asset to a private warehouse until a bidder comes to acquire it in return for funds. Warehousing is a very common strategy adopted for divestment.
- Embracing Targeted Divestment: In this type of divestment, there is a fixed sum one can disinvest in, and nothing beyond that is acceptable. Certain terms and conditions are also attached to this form of divestment.
- Acquiring Bridge Ownership: It is selling an asset by one public enterprise to another. This creates a bridge between two undertakings or enterprises, called bridge ownership.
- Adopting Initial Public Offering: Two kinds of public offerings are fixed and built. Fixed price IPO involves Shares being sold directly at a predetermined price. In contrast, the book-built IPO involves an auction between the investors after presenting a price band.
- Endorsing Opportunistic Mindset Towards Disinvesting: This is selling the asset when the right offer strikes. In this case, the offer or opportunity has a much higher monetary value than the market price of the same asset.
Key Terms for Divestments
- Liquidation of Assets: Liquidation simply means selling property or assets in return for acquiring wealth in hands and also implies closing a business and distributing its assets to the necessary plaintiffs.
- Debt: A certain sum adopted for a period of time and returned in the future, along with a proper amount of interest.
- Subsidiary: It is a smaller unit of a large company. The large or bigger company is known as the parent company.
- Return on Investment: Return on investment (ROI) is a measure of performance used to assess an investment's efficiency or profitability or to compare the efficiency of several investments.
- Divestiture: The compulsory exchange of ownership or disposal of desires on the demands and conditions of government.
- Asset Sale: Selling off assets such as stocks, bonds, real estate, or other investments to liquidate holdings.
- Stock Divestment: The sale or elimination of shares in a company, often done for ethical, social, or political reasons.
- Privatization: The transfer of ownership and control of government-owned or public-sector assets to private individuals or companies.
Final Thoughts on Divestments
Divestment has been a topic of discussion to make a nation step towards a path of expansion. In earlier times, divestment was not considered necessary and has failed miserably at the implementation stage. But divestment in an organization can lead to as much success as is usually tied up with the idea of investment. Letting go of unwanted or unproductive assets is always a better plan, accompanied by a smart strategy. Also lastly, divestment has helped tackle many issues and focus on important spheres of a nation alongside handling fiscal deficit.
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