Thursday, July 08, 2021

Air India property auction starts July 8, airline seeks to raise Rs 270 crore

Air India’s auction of properties, including apartments and commercial space across major cities, starts on Thursday, with the debt-laden national carrier seeking to raise Rs 270 crore.

At least 28 properties of the airline will go under the hammer at 2 pm on July 8 and the e-bidding will close at 2:30 pm on July 9, according to details posted on the MSTC e-commerce website.

State-owned MSTC, which specialises in conducting e-auctions, is handling the online sale for Air India. Inspection of the properties was opened to the public on June 20 and will close today (July 7).

With COVID-19 restrictions being lifted gradually, the response has been good and several people have visited the sites and made phone enquiries, people aware of the matter told Moneycontrol.

“People are physically inspecting the property. They are confident that they would be getting a clear title and transparent pricing since they are buying from a government entity,” they said. “Only those who have registered on the website can participate in the e-auction for the particular property. That’s the process. It may take about 60 days for the process to be completed.”

Air India had, through an advertisement in national dailies on June 18, announced the e-auction of the properties – residential, commercial and plots – located across major cities as part of its asset monetisation plan amid the disinvestment process of the flag carrier.

The starting bid price of these units ranges from Rs 13.3 lakh to about Rs 150 crore and the airline is looking to raise a minimum of Rs 270 crore from the sale of all the properties, according to a tender document issued by the airline and reviewed by Moneycontrol.

The auction includes properties that were put on sale multiple times previously but failed to attract bidders. Air India has now lowered the reserve price of some of these properties, especially those in tier 1 cities, by about 10 percent from the previous auction to attract buyers, a senior airline official had told Moneycontrol, requesting anonymity.

The properties on offer include five flats at the Asian Games Village Complex in south Delhi and a 2,006 square metre residential plot in Pali Hill, Bandra, with a building that has 14 flats and a total built-up area of 2,030 sq. m.

The starting price for the duplex units in the Asian Games Village ranges from about Rs 4 crore to about Rs 9 crore, while for the plot in Bandra, it is Rs 150 crore. Also on the block are one three-bedroom unit and two two-bedroom units in Sachin da Strains, Gasdar Scheme in Santacruz, Mumbai, priced at between Rs 2 crore and Rs 4 crore.

Sources told Moneycontrol that over 50 people visited the Asian Games Village site and there were over 500 phone enquiries.

As many as 15 people inspected the Pali Hill, Bandra, property and 10 people visited the units located in Santacruz. “At least 50 people made phone enquiries,” sources said.

08/07/21 Vandana Ramani/Moneycontrol

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