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Kingfisher Airlines mulls rights offer, GDR sale to reduce debt

Kingfisher Airlines mulls rights offer, GDR sale to reduce debt
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First Published: Tue, Sep 22 2009. 11 16 PM IST

 Feeling the drag: A file photo of a Kingfisher Airlines plane at Delhi airport. The airline has Rs6,000 crore of debt, almost a third of it coming from payments made to purchase new aircraft. Ramesh
Feeling the drag: A file photo of a Kingfisher Airlines plane at Delhi airport. The airline has Rs6,000 crore of debt, almost a third of it coming from payments made to purchase new aircraft. Ramesh
Updated: Tue, Sep 22 2009. 11 16 PM IST
New Delhi: Kingfisher Airlines Ltd may raise as much as $175 million (Rs843.5 crore) selling shares and global depository receipts, or GDRs, to repay debt.
Feeling the drag: A file photo of a Kingfisher Airlines plane at Delhi airport. The airline has Rs6,000 crore of debt, almost a third of it coming from payments made to purchase new aircraft. Ramesh Pathania / Mint
The carrier may seek between $80 million and $100 million in a rights offer and a further $60-75 million selling GDRs, Ravi Nedungadi, chief financial officer of the airline’s parent UB Group, told UTV television channel. The money may be raised within six months, he said in an interview.
Kingfisher Airlines has Rs6,000 crore of debt, almost a third of it coming from payments made to purchase new aircraft, Nedungadi said on Tuesday. Unprofitable Kingfisher, Jet Airways (India) Ltd, the nation’s largest domestic carrier, and other airlines are all seeking to sell new shares to pare debt and interest payments amid losses from a slump in travel demand.
Kingfisher earlier this year delayed taking delivery of Airbus A380 aircraft to 2014 from 2012 after scrapping three orders with the plane maker last year.
The airline’s passenger numbers fell for a third consecutive month in August, according to government data.
Kingfisher will bring in a strategic partner if government rules permit, Nedungadi said. The company hasn’t pursued expressions of interest made by foreign airlines as the rules don’t permit overseas carriers from buying stakes in local airlines, Nedungadi said. “We are waiting for a change in regulations,” he said.
Kingfisher fell 0.19% to Rs51.95 on the Bombay stock exchange on Tuesday. The shares have gained about 28% this year.
Jet Airways said earlier this month it plans to sell shares to institutional investors as part of its $400 million fund-raising to cut debt and raise working capital.
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First Published: Tue, Sep 22 2009. 11 16 PM IST