Jet Airways crisis: Hinduja Group likely to bid for grounded airline again, to submit EoI by 15 January; shares up 5%

As per media reports, the UK-based group plans to submit an expression of interest by the 15 January deadline, signalling its intent to make a formal offer.

FP Staff December 31, 2019 17:14:36 IST
Jet Airways crisis: Hinduja Group likely to bid for grounded airline again, to submit EoI by 15 January; shares up 5%
  • Last week, it was reported that the Hinduja group was still keen to bid for Jet Airways

  • In May this year, Hinduja Group was planning to initiate the bidding process for Jet Airways

  • Last week, the NCLT had approved extension of Jet Airways insolvency resolution period by 90 days

Raising fresh hopes for the revival of Jet Airways once again, the Hinduja Group is reportedly preparing to buy the grounded airline, which ended its operations in April this year following acute liquidity crunch.

Following this report, Jet Airways shares on Tuesday gained five percent to touch its highest trading permissible limit, reported PTI.

The scrip jumped 4.96 percent to Rs 29.60 — its upper circuit limit — on the BSE. On the NSE, it went up 4.87 percent to Rs 29.05 — its highest trading permissible limit for the day.

Jet Airways crisis Hinduja Group likely to bid for grounded airline again to submit EoI by 15 January shares up 5

Representational image. Reuters.

As per media reports, the UK-based group plans to submit an expression of interest by the 15 January deadline, signalling its intent to make a formal offer.

Last week, it was reported that the Hinduja group was still keen to bid for Jet Airways. The London-based Group is interested in the defunct airline because government authorities had approached them to help in [the] survival of Jet Airways.

"Even the banks approached us," said Gopichand P Hinduja, co-chairman of the London-based group.

“With our good relations and contacts in the Middle East and Gulf, we took the initiative to support and help," he said.

In May this year, there were reports that Hinduja Group was planning to initiate the bidding process for Jet Airways. The business group and Etihad Airways were also expected to meet on 23 May this year for exploring ways to revive the cash-starved airline.

However, the Hinduja Group and Etihad Airways had failed to strike a deal for joint ownership of Jet Airways.

It was reported that officials of the Hinduja Group met executives of Etihad in Abu Dhabi to discuss the deal. However, no decision was made regarding the partnership.

There were reports that the Hinduja Group was considering to invest around Rs 1,000-1,500 crore in Jet Airways as part of a plan to revive the airline. The Hinduja Group, along with Etihad Airways, State Bank of India (SBI) and London-based AdiGro, was exploring the possibility to create a consortium to own Jet Airways.

In June this year, it was reported that Hinduja Group decided to halt negotiations for buying a stake in Jet Airways while Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways, which owns nearly 24 percent stake in the Naresh Goyal-owned airline, put its plan on hold to invest further.

Hinduja Group withdrew from the stake buy move because the promoters of the business conglomerate had expressed concerns over the ongoing government investigations into Jet Airways and insolvency pleas submitted by its creditors.

Last week, the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) had approved extension of Jet Airways insolvency resolution period by 90 days.

The Committee of Creditors (CoC) sought extension of corporate insolvency resolution process (CIRP) of Jet Airways from the Mumbai bench of the NCLT in view of South America's Synergy Group wanting more time for due diligence and two new interests being shown for the grounded airline.

On 17 December, the Aviation Ministry and Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) had informed the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) that they would positively consider any concrete business plan for the grounded Jet Airways.

The counsel representing the Ministry told the tribunal that it would examine the issue if Jet Airways prospective investors came up with a concrete business plan.

The airline owes over Rs 8,500 crore to a consortium of 26 banks led by State Bank, and over Rs 13,000 crore to the tens of hundreds of vendors and around 23,000-odd employees.

Lenders to Jet Airways, led by the State Bank of India (SBI), are seeking investors in Jet to recover their dues. The airline’s total liability, including unpaid salaries and vendor dues, is nearly Rs 15,000 crore.

With PTI inputs

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