Lenders of private carrier Jet Airways announced on Thursday that they will invite bids for a stake sale in the debt-ridden company on April 6. Entities interesting in buying a stake in the airline should submit their bids by April 9, the statement added.
A stake sale is the sale of equity shares of the company to another entity. Thursday’s announcement came after Jet Airways’ lenders, led by the State Bank of India, held a meeting to take stock of the situation.
“The lenders are cognizant that the outcome of the efforts will depend on the interest shown by the parties on sale of stake in the company,” the statement added. “Whilst all efforts will be made for the stake sale by the lenders, other options may be considered by the enders should these efforts not result in an acceptable outcome.” The lenders may consider initiating bankruptcy proceedings against Jet Airways if the proposed stake sale fails, Mint reported.
In March, Jet Airways founder Naresh Goyal and his wife Anita Goyal resigned from the board of directors of the company. The company had said that an interim panel would be set up to handle its affairs, and added that lenders have promised an immediate infusion of Rs 1,500 crore in the airline.
The same month, Jet Airways had told the Centre that it will not ground any more aircraft. However, on Wednesday, the Ministry of Civil Aviation said that Jet Airways is currently operating less than 15 aircraft for domestic operations. Civil Aviation Secretary Pradeep Singh Kharola said the airline’s ability to fly internationally should be examined. However, on Thursday, he said that the airline was operating a total of 28 aircraft, both domestically and internationally, and could continue flying abroad, PTI reported.
The airline’s pilots had threatened to go on strike from April 1 if their salaries, pending since December, were not paid. On March 31, the company said it will clear pilots’ dues for December.