Friday, January 11, 2019

Rebidding for Air India headquarters likely after only LIC bids

The iconic Air India building in Mumbai will undergo a bidding process once again. Low response from the "interested" players is forcing the beleaguered airline to go for rebidding.

For the last few months, the national carrier has been preparing plans and holding talks with interested parties to sell the 23-storied building at the Queen's Necklace in Nariman Point business district. Bids were sought in December.

Sale of the leasehold rights of the land and the building is part of the airline's plan to monetise on the real estate assets.
"December 31 was the last date to submit quotes and we received only one bid, which was from Life Insurance Corporation (LIC). As only one bid was received, we haven't even opened it and have moved the file for re-bid," said a source.

The Union Ministry of Civil Aviation will take a final call on the rebid. There is a possibility of a nod for re-tendering within a fortnight.

The bid had a condition that the building will be sold only to government entities, thereby shrinking the competition as well as avenues available.

However, Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) and Maharashtra government had shown interest to acquire the property, but did not place their quote.

"We received a letter from the Maharashtra government stating that they are interested in the purchase, but they did not submit their quote," said a source.

Under the plan, the airline to retain around 5,000 square feet on 22nd floor for its own use, apart from retaining its logo on top of its erstwhile headquarters.
11/01/19 Ateeq Shaikh/DNA