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Bankers deadline for Kingfisher Airlines comes and goes

The bankers-set deadline for Kingfisher Airlines came and went by on November 30, with the lenders announcing that they hadn't heard from the cash-strapped airline's management.

BT Online Bureau   Mumbai     Last Updated: December 3, 2012  | 18:28 IST

The bankers-set deadline for Kingfisher Airlines came and went by on November 30, with the lenders announcing that they hadn't heard from the cash-strapped airline's management.

A banker sounded optimistic though about a meeting between the lenders' consortium and the airline's management "in the next fortnight".

State Bank of India (SBI) chairman Pratip Chaudhuri had in November asked the airline, a part of the UB Group, to bring in at least $1 billion (over Rs 5,400 crore) by November-end.

Expectations had gone up following the announcement of a Rs 11,100 crore United Spirits-Diageo deal, wherein UB group is expected to receive a large sum.

FROM THE MAGAZINE:Kingfisher best off staying on the ground?

However, soon after the deal was announced, UB Group Chairman Vijay Mallya made it clear that the proceeds would not be diverted to Kingfisher Airlines, saying "both businesses will be dealt with separately".

A senior banker had then said that these were complicated issues - how the money from the deal will find its way to Kingfisher's lenders. Such issues will have to be sorted out across the table between the top management of the airline and the bankers, he had said.

"We have not heard from the airline yet and I expect some meeting between the consortium and the airline to happen in the next fortnight," Shyamal Acharya, deputy managing director in charge of mid corporate group at State Bank of India, the lead banker, said.

He said no fresh date has been decided for the meeting with the Vijay Mallya-led airline, which owes Rs 7,000 crore to the consortium of 17 banks, with SBI alone accounting for Rs 1,200 crore.

With inputs from PTI

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