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Business News/ Companies / News/  Byju’s says it’s in talks with BCCI to settle pending insolvency issue
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Byju’s says it’s in talks with BCCI to settle pending insolvency issue

BCCI filed a case in NCLT against Byju’s parent for default in payment of ₹160 cr dues

Byju’s is selling its US-based online book reading platform Epic for more than $400 million, a move that is likely to ease its capital constraints. (Bloomberg)Premium
Byju’s is selling its US-based online book reading platform Epic for more than $400 million, a move that is likely to ease its capital constraints. (Bloomberg)

Mumbai: Byju’s, the ed-tech firm on Tuesday said it is in talks with the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to settle a pending insolvency matter filed against it in Bengaluru National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT).

“We are in discussions with Board of Control for Cricket in India to settle the matter and we hope to achieve that soon," said the ed-tech firm’s spokesperson without divulging any further details.

The BCCI in September filed an application before the Bengaluru bench of NCLT against Think & Learn Pvt Ltd that operates Byju’s for defaulting on dues of close to 160 crore. The case pertains to the dispute around sponsorship rights of the Indian cricket team’s jerseys.

It was on 15 November that the bankruptcy tribunal registered the matter for further hearing, according to the latest details available on their website.

To be sure, the ed-tech firm has been a partner of the Indian cricket team since 2019, with its branding featured on the front of the team’s jersey.

In June last year, Byju’s extended its sponsorship rights with the BCCI till November 2023.

The ed-tech firm had asked the board to encash 140 crore bank guarantee, while the remaining 160 crore was to be paid in installments.

A BCCI source confirmed the development, but added that they have not arrived at any solution.

The problem for the ed-tech decacorn is compounding as it scrambles to raise funds, Mint reported earlier this month. The company’s former employees that were part of the layoff cycle are yet to get their full and final (F&F) settlements, highlighting the depth of the cash strapped company’s troubles.

The company is in the process of selling its US-based online book reading platform Epic for a consideration of more than $400 million, a move that is likely to ease its capital constraints.

“Once there is some liquidity from asset sales, the company is likely to repay BCCI. Currently the priority is F&F payments to ex-employees," a person with knowledge of the company’s plans said.

The company is also looking to sell its other dollar-earning asset Great Learning, Mint had reported earlier. The sale is part of Byju’s efforts to monetize some of its profitable assets to repay its term loan B lenders. The sale of Epic is likely to close first.

After much delay, the company filed its standalone financials on November 4. The edtech company reported that its revenue was up at 3,569 crore, with its earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortisation or Ebitda loss at 2,253 crore year-on-year (YoY). The company is yet to file its consolidated numbers and its FY 23 financials.

The company’s CFO Ajay Goel, who joined in May left within six months to go back to Anil Agarwal-led Vedanta Group. The resignation comes amidst mounting troubles from its board members resigning and its long time statutory auditor too resigning owing to alleged poor governance standards.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Priyanka Gawande
Priyanka Gawande is a senior legal correspondent at Mint. She has worked as legal reporter for four years with both television and digital mediums. Based in Mumbai, she reports on disputes across sectors including banking, corporates and finance. This also includes insolvency and bankruptcy cases and intellectual property rights (IPR) litigation. Her focus also comprises tracking capital markets and disputes relating to securities law. Previously, Priyanka worked with Informist Media for 2.5 years covering major insolvency and bankruptcy cases and corporate developments. She started her career in journalism with Business Television India (BTVi) where she reported on primary markets, banking, finance and insurance companies.
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Published: 28 Nov 2023, 10:52 PM IST
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