(Photo: Abhijit Bhatlekar/Mint)
(Photo: Abhijit Bhatlekar/Mint)

Jet Airways lenders draw blank on fresh EoIs after extending deadline

  • South American conglomerate Synergy Group Corp. has shown preliminary interest in Jet Airways
  • Jet Airways suspended operations in April due to acute fund crunch

MUMBAI/NEW DELHI : Lenders of the grounded airline Jet Airways (India) Ltd., which extended the deadline for submitting expression of interest (EoI) until 31 August, to attract more potential bidders, haven't found any fresh interest for the carrier, a person with direct knowledge of the matter told Mint.

"We have not got any more EoIs after we extended the date to 31 August," said the person mentioned above.

EoIs are technically not bids, but they have helped lenders gauge the level of interest in the debt-laden airline.

"The lenders appointed resolution professional, Ashish Chhawchharia, will now verify the proposals received from the three prospective applicants and send them to the committee of creditors (CoC)," added the person mentioned above.

As things stand, the lenders appointed resolution professional (RP) has received EoIs from Panama-based Avantulo Group, South American conglomerate Synergy Group Corp and a Russian fund called Treasury RA Creator.

While, the lenders had received EoIs from Panama-based Avantulo Group and Russian fund Treasury RA Creator just before the earlier deadline of 10 August, South American conglomerate Synergy Group Corp submitted their EoI just after the deadline.

The deadline was subsequently extended to attract more bidders.

South American conglomerate Synergy Group Corp., which owns a majority stake in Colombian carrier Avianca Holdings, the second-largest airline in South America, has shown preliminary interest in Jet Airways.

According to Antonio Guizzetti, president of consultancy G&A, who is advising Synergy Group, the conglomerate is eyeing a significant stake in the grounded Indian carrier, which will depend on discussions and negotiations with banks and other creditors.

Jet Airways suspended operations in April due to acute fund crunch.

On 20 June, the Mumbai bench of the National Company Law Tribunal admitted Jet Airways under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC). A consortium of 26 banks led by the State Bank of India had approached the tribunal to recover dues of more than Rs8,500 crore.

Lenders have been trying to sell the beleaguered airline as a going concern for the past five months.

Access to prime slots at key airports, a stake in a profitable frequent flyer programme and a few relatively old planes appear to be the only assets before a potential bidder.

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