Tata Sons set to enter race for Air India as bid deadline ends today
23 December 2020
Tata Sons is set to file Expression of Interest (EoI) in the strategic disinvestment process of Air India as the deadline for filing the EoI ends today, reports said.
Tatas will be filing its EoI through its joint venture with Malaysian carrier Air Asia and if the group successfully carries itself through the entire bidding process, it will be the second coming for Tatas who lost are airline to the government in 1956.
The group already runs two airlines in India – Vistara, a full-service joint venture with Singapore Airline and a joint venture with Malaysia’s no-frills carrier Air Asia.
The plan, as per reports, is for Tata Sons to slowly raise its stake in AirAsia India to more than 76 per cent by the end of 2020-21
As the deadline for bidding for Air India ends on Monday, reports suggest that besues the Tata group, other leading corporate houses such as Adani and Hinduja may also be interested.
The final date for submission of bids for Air India strategic sale is 14 December and the government has not extended the deadline.
However, the government has extended the intimation date for bidders for Air India to 5 January, from the earlier date of 29 December.
This is the date for announcing the shortlisted bidders. The physical bids need to be in by 29 December.
The government has been trying for two years to divest its Air India. It wants to divest 100 per cent stake in Air India and budget carrier AI Express, and sell its 50 per cent share in Air India SATS Airport Services, a joint venture with Singapore-based ground handling firm SATS.
The government has further sweetened the deal and now it will be sold on its enterprise value.
Reports, meanwhile said a group of 209 employees of Air India also are likely to bid for the national carrier in partnership with a US-based private financier Interups Inc to bid for the airline.
As reports suggest, each employee will be asked to contribute Rs1 lakh towards the bid with the fund filling the gap.