Jet Airways founder and Chairperson Naresh Goyal has offered to invest Rs 700 crore in the struggling airline, PTI reported on Thursday. Goyal, who holds 51% stake in the private carrier, has also offered to sell his shares as long as his stake does not fall below 25%.
In a letter to State Bank of India Chairperson Rajnish Kumar, Goyal said he was “committed to an infusion of funds into the company to the extent of Rs 700 crore” and pledged all his shares. The businessman added that he would not be able to infuse funds if his stake falls below 25%. Kumar confirmed on the sidelines of an event that Goyal has made the offer, Bloomberg reported.
State Bank of India is Jet Airways’ biggest lender, and is leading the efforts to evolve a comprehensive plan to revive the airline. On Wednesday, the private carrier said several options, including equity infusion by stakeholders and changes in the company’s board of directors, were being considered.
Jet Airways has posted losses of over Rs 1,000 crore for three consecutive quarters since March 2018. The carrier defaulted on loan repayments to banks on December 31.
A report on Sunday said Goyal might step down as chairperson this week. It added that Etihad Airways, which holds 24% stake in the airline, will increase its share to 49%, the maximum allowed for a foreign airline under current Indian laws.
Etihad Airways is ready to invest Rs 800-1000 crore in Jet, according to Bloomberg. However, this involves reducing Goyal’s stake in the carrier to 22%.
SBI and other Jet Airways lenders held a meeting in Mumbai on Wednesday, following which both Goyal’s offer and Etihad Airways’ are being considered.