Lenders may drag four power producers to NCLT
Banks may initiate bankruptcy proceedings against GCEL, Utkal, Lanco Anpara and JITPL
Mumbai: Lenders are likely to initiate bankruptcy proceedings against GMR Chhattisgarh Energy Ltd (GCEL), Ind-Barath Energy (Utkal) Ltd, Lanco Anpara Power Ltd and Jindal India Thermal Power Ltd ( JITPL), two people directly aware of the development said on Tuesday.
The decision to refer the four power producers to the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) follows unsuccessful talks between lenders, comprising both public and private banks, and potential buyers due to mismatches in valuations, said the people on condition of anonymity.
“Lenders have in principle decided to take the companies to NCLT but would continue to engage with their financial sponsors for a favourable solution,” said one of the people cited above.
The person said Axis Bank is likely to file for bankruptcy against GCEL, while IDBI Bank and Punjab National Bank are likely to move NCLT against Lanco Anpara, JITPL and Utkal.
Axis Bank, PNB and IDBI Bank didn’t respond to emailed queries. GMR Group, Lanco Group, B.C. Jindal Group and Ind-Barath group also didn’t immediately respond to emailed queries.
“For the remaining cases which are not in NCLT yet, the lenders have offered to restructure 50% of the debt or minimum sustainable debt, whichever is lower, in lieu of promoters bringing down their equity stake to 25% or less,” said one of the people cited above.
GMR Chhattisgarh Energy Ltd, a wholly owned unit of GMR Energy Ltd (GEL), has an overall capacity of 1,370 megawatt (MW) and owes ₹8,290 crore to its lenders.
The company has short-term power purchase pacts and its loan payments are outstanding since March 2017.
Mint had reported in October 2016 that the GMR Group was in talks with Singapore’s SembCorp Industries Ltd and US-based Lone Star Funds to sell a controlling stake in the company.
Jindal India Thermal Power Ltd, which is part of the BC Jindal group, owns a 1,200 MW thermal power plant in Odisha’s Angul district. The company has a debt of ₹5,900 crore.
Meanwhile, Ind-Barath Energy (Utkal) Ltd , which counts several private equity funds as its financial sponsors, has a debt of ₹779 crore.
It operates a 700 MW power plant at Jharsuguda, Odisha.
Mint had reported in January 2017 that the company was in talks with NLC India Ltd to sell a controlling stake but the transaction did not conclude.
Lanco Anpara operates a 1,200 MW coal-fired power plant in Uttar Pradesh for which it power purchase agreements.
The company owes close to ₹3,700 crore to various lenders.