The Jet Airways share price rose in early trade amid reports founder Naresh Goyal has agreed to step down as the Chairman of the company's board as the lenders gear up to acquire majority stake in the airline under a bailout plan. The airline has not confirmed the exit of Goyal yet.
However, the gains were capped after the loss-making air carrier said six more aircraft have been grounded due to non-payment of lease rentals. With this, the total number of aircraft taken out of operations due to severe liquidity crunch in the airline and its subsequent failure to pay rentals to various lessors now stand at 19 so far this month, as per the airline.
Jet Airways share price rose 6.33% to 236.90 compared to the previous close of 222.80 on the BSE. Jet Airways share price rose with a gain of 4.89% to 233.70 on BSE. The small cap share has lost 68.57% during the last one year and fallen 16.08% since the beginning of this year.
The development comes a day after an urgent meeting of lenders with Goyal and Etihad Airways Chief Executive Officer Tony Douglas to resolve various issues between the two promoters as well as lenders and Etihad. The Gulf-based carrier holds 24 per cent stake in the Mumbai-based full service airline, founded by Goyal 25 years ago.
State Bank of India is the lead lender of a consortium that has extended loans to Jet Airways, which has been grappling with financial woes and is looking to rejig debt as well as raise funds.
On February 14, Jet Airways' board had approved a Bank-Led Provisional Resolution Plan (BLPRP), whereby lenders would become the largest shareholders in the airline. Its shareholders have also approved conversion of loan into shares and other proposals during the extraordinary general meeting on February 21.
The Bank-Led Resolution Plan (BLRP) by lenders estimated a funding gap of Rs 8,500 crore (including proposed repayment of aircraft debt of Rs 1,700 crore) to be met by appropriate mix of equity infusion, debt restructuring, sale and lease back of aircraft, among other things.
Shareholders of Jet Airways had approved conversion of loan into shares and other proposals during the extraordinary general meeting (EGM) last week.
As on September 30, 2018, Jet Airways had gross debt of Rs 8,411 crore (including terms loans from banks and dues to lessors for aircraft lease), as against Rs 8,403 crore as on March 31, 2018. The company has large repayments of Rs 1,700 crore due over December 2018 to March 2019, Rs 2,444.5 crore in FY2020 and Rs 2,167.9 crore in FY2021.
Jet defaulted in servicing its loan obligations on December 31 2018 and the 90-day window before its loans are dubbed non-performing assets (NPA) ends on 31 March 2019. The company is reeling under losses for the last four consecutive quarters with its shares losing over 60% in one year.