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Open Offer


An open offer is a financial term referring to a company’s specific type of stock offering. Usually, this offering is made to existing shareholders, permitting them to buy additional shares directly from the company in proportion to their existing holdings, typically at a discount. The aim of an open offer is to raise new capital for the company.


The phonetic transcription of “Open Offer” is /ˈoʊpən ˈɔfər/.

Key Takeaways

Understanding Open Offer

Main Takeaways about Open Offer

  1. An open offer is a type of corporate action that provides existing shareholders an opportunity to purchase additional shares directly from the company, usually at a discounted price.

  2. The aim of an open offer is often to raise extra funds for the business, which might be used to cover existing debt obligations, fund new projects, or expand the company’s operational capabilities.

  3. Open offers help maintain a fair and equal opportunity for all shareholders by allowing them to maintain their proportional ownership in the company and prevent dilution of their shares.


Open Offer is an important term in business and finance for it is associated with raising additional capital in the company. It provides an opportunity for existing shareholders to avoid dilution of their holdings. In an open offer, a company makes an offer to its existing shareholders to purchase additional shares often less than the prevailing market price. It is vital because it helps companies raise funds without increasing debt, thereby maintaining a balanced capital structure. Furthermore, it protects the existing shareholders’ interest, as they’re given the right to maintain their percentage of ownership by purchasing a proportionate number of shares at a discounted price.


The purpose of an open offer is primarily to raise additional capital for the company. It is a specific type of corporate action that a publicly traded company undertakes when it needs to fund its operations, expansion plans, or pay off debt. During an open offer, the company offers additional shares to its existing shareholders, usually at a discounted price. This process helps to generate the necessary funds while still protecting the voting rights of the existing shareholders and preventing potential dilution. Shareholders can choose to buy the additional shares (thus retaining their proportionate ownership), ignore the offer, or sell their rights to other interested investors. Moreover, an open offer is used to keep a balance of power in company ownership. For instance, major shareholders might want to maintain their current level of control within the company. If these major shareholders were not given the opportunity to buy more shares before they were offered to the general public, they could risk losing their controlling stake. Through an open offer, companies can also exhibit their commitment to equitable treatment of all shareholders, as everyone gets an opportunity to maintain their stake in the business.


1. GlaxoSmithKline’s Open Offer: In 2014, the global healthcare group GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) made an open offer to the shareholders of its Indian subsidiary, GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare. GSK offered to buy up to an additional 31.8 percent stake in the Indian entity at a price of Rs. 3,900 per share.2. Vedanta Resources’s Open Offer: In 2020, Vedanta Resources Limited, a globally diversified natural resources company, made an open offer to the shareholders of its India subsidiary Cairn India Limited. The purpose of this open offer was for Vedanta Resources to consolidate its ownership and control over Cairn India.3. Reliance Industries’ Open Offer: In 2019, Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL), a major conglomerate in India, made an open offer to the shareholders of cable operator Hathway Cable and Datacom Ltd as part of its plan to expand its services in the telecommunication segment. RIL proposed to acquire shares of Hathway Cable and Datacom Ltd that constituted up to 26 percent of the expanded voting share capital.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What is an Open Offer?

An Open Offer is a type of corporate action where existing shareholders are given the opportunity to buy additional shares directly from the company at a discounted price before they are offered to the public. The company does this to raise additional capital.

Who can participate in an Open Offer?

An Open Offer is typically available to existing shareholders of the company. Each shareholder usually has the option to buy a specified number of additional shares for each one they currently own.

Why would a company choose to issue an Open Offer?

Companies often use Open Offers to raise additional capital for various reasons, such as to pay down debt, fund acquisitions, or support general business expansion.

What is the advantage of an Open Offer for shareholders?

The advantage of an Open Offer for shareholders is that they are able to purchase additional shares at a discount without diluting their current ownership stake in the company.

What happens if shareholders choose not to participate in an Open Offer?

If a shareholder elects not to participate in an Open Offer, their stake in the company could be diluted, because the company is issuing more shares.

How is an Open Offer different from a Rights Issue?

Though both Open Offers and Rights Issues allow existing shareholders to purchase additional shares, the key difference lies in their flexibility. In a Rights Issue, shareholders must either exercise their rights to buy the shares or sell them. However, in an Open Offer, shareholders can ignore the offer without any consequences.

Can an Open Offer be made to new investors?

While traditionally Open Offers are made to existing shareholders, depending on the regulations of the jurisdiction, companies may also make the offer to new investors if the existing shareholders do not take up the offer.

How long does an Open Offer last?

The period of an Open Offer can vary based on the company’s decision, but they typically run for a few weeks. It’s important for shareholders to respond within this time to take advantage of purchasing discounted shares.

What is the usual discount on shares in an Open Offer?

The discount in an Open Offer can be anything that the company decides but often it is a notable discount compared to the current trading price, making it attractive for existing shareholders.

: Is participation in an Open Offer mandatory for shareholders?

No, participation in an Open Offer is optional. Shareholders can choose whether or not they want to purchase the additional shares.

Related Finance Terms

  • Underwriting
  • Rights Issue
  • Share Dilution
  • Securities Regulation
  • Subscription Price

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