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Adani Group needs more time to acquire stake in Mumbai Airport

Senior counsel for Adani Properties told the Bombay High Court that the company is ready to put the full amount in a no-lien bank account if the transaction deadline is deferred to February 7 from November 7

twitter-logo BusinessToday.In        Last Updated: November 6, 2019  | 13:25 IST
Adani Group needs more time to acquire stake in Mumbai Airport
Bidvest and ACSA together own around 23.5% stake in MIAL

Gautam Adani-controlled Adani Properties Tuesday said that it is seeking time extension to conclude its proposed acquisition of Bidvest's stake in Mumbai International Airport Ltd (MIAL) by three months to February 2020.

GVK Power & Infrastructure operates the MIAL. Senior counsel for Adani Properties Darius Khambata told the Bombay High Court that the company is ready to put the full amount in a no-lien bank account if the transaction time limit is deferred to February 7 from November 7, The Economic Times reported.

South Africa's Bidvest Group had in April consented to sell its 13.5% stake to Adani Properties by September 30 for an amount of Rs 1,235 crore. Adani Properties went to the Bombay High Court to restrict Bidvest from selling its stake to any other party.

Also Read:GVK Group raises Rs 7,600 crore to reduce debt; acquires 23.5% stake in Mumbai airport

Justice AK Menon had reserved the matter for order on November 6 after hearing arguments from all the parties in the case. "We are seeking an injunction against Bidvest to sell their shares to anyone," Khambata contended.

"GVK has failed to purchase shares from Bidvest and the other stakeholder AAI (Airports Authority of India) has made it clear that they are not interested to acquire those shares and hence there is nothing that can stop Bidvest to sell those shares to us," Kambata articulated.

Adani Properties is also seeking court's mediation to designate Bidvest as the 'constructive trustee' to ensure that GVK and Airports Authority of India (AAI) comply with the right of first refusal to sell their stakes to them.

However, Ravi Kadam, the senior counsel for GVK contended that the company has already deposited the money in an escrow account on October 30.

Bidvest's senior counsel Janak Dwarkadas noted that the company has two suitors with no money.

Also Read: Tussle for Mumbai Airport: GVK to sell 49% stake in airport arm to keep Adani out of MIAL

Following GVK's delay in making the payment, Bidvest went to the Delhi High Court which permitted it to approach an arbitration tribunal. The tribunal then granted GVK time until-October-end to make the payment.

"Currently, the arbitration tribunal has restrained us from selling shares until November 24," Dwarkadas told the news daily.

According to GVK Group's stock exchange filing on October 27, it has raised around Rs 7,600 crore from investors which will be used to pare its debt and buy a 23.5% stake in MIAL.

Bidvest and ACSA together own around 23.5% stake in MIAL. GVK Group holds 50.5% stake in MIAL and the rest is owned by the Airports Authority of India (AAI). GVK with its purchase of Bidvest's 13.5% and ACSA's 10% stake will take its total shareholding in MIAL to 74%.

Also Read:Mumbai airport stake: Adanis move High Court against GVK bid to stall its deal

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