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Deccan Chronicle office in Hyderabad. Photo by Kumar/ Mint

Deccan Chronicle office in Hyderabad. Photo by Kumar/ Mint

Deccan Chronicle Holdings seeks debt restructure

Deccan Chronicle Holdings seeks debt restructure

Hyderabad: Newspaper publisher Deccan Chronicle Holdings Ltd (DCHL) plans to seek a debt recast from creditors, the company said, as it attempts to emerge from a financial crisis.

Hyderabad-based DCHL’s board of directors on Friday approved a resolution to restructure the company’s debt through an application to the corporate debt restructuring (CDR) cell, the company said in a statement to the National Stock Exchange.

Deccan Chronicle office in Hyderabad. Photo by Kumar/ Mint

The company has already put its Indian Premier League (IPL) team Deccan Chargers on sale as it seeks to dispose of assets that aren’t central to its main media business in order to repay debt. DCHL publishes English-language dailies Deccan Chronicle, Financial Chronicle and Asian Age and the Telugu newspaper Andhra Bhoomi.

As per ministry of corporate affairs (MCA) filings, ICICI Bank is the largest lender to the company with exposure of around 10 crore, followed by IDFC Bank Ltd and Future Capital with 170 crore each. Axis Bank has exposure of 100 crore, Canara Bank 75 crore, Indian Overseas Bank 70 crore and Yes Bank 50 crore.

The promoters of DCHL--chairman T. Venkrattram Reddy, his brother T. Vinayak Reddy and P.K. Iyer--are facing a cheating case filed by its registrar Karvy Computershare Pvt. Ltd. Some its lender banks have also moved the Debt Recovery Tribunal and the Andhra Pradesh and Bombay high courts to recover dues.

Venkattram Reddy has blamed the company’s financial woes on a liquidity crisis and declining advertisement revenue. Reddy said in an interview to The Economic Times recently that he needs 400-500 crore to tide over the crisis.

DCHL was down 3.38% at 12:59 pm on BSE Ltd on Monday; the benchmark index was 0.18% up at 17,780.85 points.

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