Thursday, June 25, 2020

AirAsia may have to take legal route to exit India JV

Mumbai: AirAsia’s reported move to sell its 49% stake in its Indian venture will face legal hurdles as agencies probing corruption and money laundering charges against its founder Tony Fernandes and former brass of AirAsia India are set to oppose it.
Fernandes hinted at possible exit from its Indian joint venture with the Tata Group when he said in a Credit Suisse webinar that “we would never say that we would never exit India.”
A probe agency official, however, said the agency would oppose any such move. “Since this (the ongoing probe) is directly related to the airline, at this point we have to probe the shares before he is allowed to sell them. Fernandes will have to seek permission and even move court for the same,” the person said.
Also, Tata Group is not immediately keen to buy out AirAsia Berhad’s stake in the no-frill domestic airline as it is focuses on prioritising capital investments in other businesses, including its other airline venture Vistara, top officials close to the development said. Global travel restrictions in the wake of Covid-19 pandemic and lockdowns have hit aviation companies that have been forced to ground their fleet.
25/06/20 Kala Vijayaraghavan, Rashmi Rajput/Economic Times

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