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MUMBAI : GMR Enterprises Pvt. Ltd, the promoter holding company of GMR group, has restructured loans worth 900 crore as it awaits plans to sell a stake in its airports business to a three-member consortium led by the Tata Group.

GMR Enterprises, which owns a 49.46% stake in the group’s flagship firm GMR Infrastructure Ltd, had availed of structured credit financing through non-convertible debentures (NCDs) from a joint venture of Piramal Enterprises and Dutch pension fund manager APG in 2015.

“These NCDs were to mature in 2019, but the promoter holding company has restructured the loans and the maturity has been extended by three years to 2022. The interest rate on these NCDs has also been hiked," said one person aware of the development.

According to Brickworks Ratings, the outstanding principal of the NCDs subscribed by Piramal and APG stood at 675 crore, as of July 2019.

“The rating however is constrained by limited revenue sources in the form of dividend/investment income as GMR Enterprises is a holding company of the group and not an operating company, increase in net losses (on a consolidated basis) for FY19 GMR Infrastructure mainly due to impairment losses due to low realization from its energy business, and dependence on refinancing and/or raising additional funds towards debt servicing," Brickworks said in a report on GMR Enterprises on 5 July.

Emails sent to GMR and Piramal did not elicit any response.

The restructuring of promoter group loans comes at a time when GMR group’s deleveraging plan is awaiting closure with a planned 8,000 crore stake sale in the airports business.

Mint reported on 27 March that the Tata Group and two foreign entities—GIC Pvt. Ltd and Hong Kong-based SSG group—have agreed to invest 8,000 crore in GMR Infrastructure Ltd’s airports business.

Of the total, 1,000 crore will come as equity infusion into GMR Airports Ltd while the three investors will use the remaining 7,000 crore to buy GMR Airports shares from its parent. The funds will be used to cut debt at the airports operator and at the group level.

Once the deal is completed, Tata Group will hold 20% in GMR Airports, while GIC and SSG will have stakes of 15% and 10% respectively. The deal valued GMR Airports at 18,000 crore.

The deal is crucial as GMR Infrastructure’s net consolidated debt is as high as 20,000 crore.

However, the stake deal in the airports business struck a hurdle recently.

The Airports Authority of India (AAI) has sought the opinion of the solicitor general on the legality of Tata Group’s plans to pick a majority stake in GMR Airports, Mint reported on 3 October.

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