Friday, October 08, 2021

Winning bidder to be announced at 4 pm today; Air India may fly to Tata’s home

Air India could finally find a new home today with either the Tata Group or SpiceJet’s Ajay Singh, after years of taxiing on the divestment runway. The Ministry of Finance’s Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM) is expected to announce the winning bidder for Air India in a press conference scheduled for 4 pm today. The central government had started evaluating the bids for the debt-laden national carrier earlier last week. Reports suggest the Tata Group is the front-runner to win the Maharaja, while SpiceJet’s Ajay Singh is the other bidder competing for the airline. The evaluation of bids was done against an undisclosed reserve price.

The governments, over the years, have tried selling the money guzzling airline but to no avail. Air India is reeling under a debt of over Rs 60,000 crore. The debt-laden carrier has 127 aircraft, controlling 50.64% of the International market share when clubbed with AIXL, among Indian carriers. Air India currently serves 42 international destinations. The government is selling its entire stake in Air India. Tata Group already owns about 84% stake in AirAsia India and 51% in Vistara.

08/10/21 Financial Express

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