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Jet Airways lenders seek two more months for insolvency resolution
Photo Credit: Reuters

With investors not showing up amid global coronavirus outbreak, lenders to Jet Airways will seek another extension of around two months for the insolvency resolution process that was set to end on Sunday.

The decision was in-principle agreed upon at a meeting on Thursday. 

The State Bank of India (SBI)-led Committee of Creditors (CoC) has failed to attract any concrete resolution plans, despite at least three parties having expressed interest.

In December, the Mumbai bench of the NCLT had extended the period for Jet Airways’ insolvency resolution process by 90 days and allowed its lenders to go for a fresh round of bidding after failing to find any buyers.

The CoC had on 18 February set the new deadline of 10 March for submission of bids for the grounded airline after South American conglomerate Synergy Group and New Delhi-based Prudent ARC failed to act by the old deadline.

According to reports, Synergy Group had backed out of the bidding process over airport slot issues.

Later, Russia's Far East Asia Development Fund also showed interest in Jet Airways.

Besides, talks with potential buyers have come to a standstill due to the disruption caused by the coronavirus outbreak, a banker said.

Vishesh C Chandiok, CEO of Grant Thornton India, had indicated last week that the process to find a buyer for the airline had failed. Grant Thornton is the resolution professional in charge of overseeing Jet Airways' bankruptcy proceedings under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC).

“I’m sorry to report but I fear we are very near the end of the road for #JetAirways—the proverbial ‘chicken or egg’ is what killed the airline—my apologies to all the employees in particular that we @GrantThorntonIN couldn’t do better for you,” he tweeted.

Jet Airways owes more than Rs 8,000 crore ($1.08 billion) to banks and is facing claims of Rs 24,887 crore ($3.37 billion) from various creditors including banks, suppliers and employees. The NCLT has admitted claims worth Rs 14,000 crore ($1.90 billion).

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