New Delhi: Jet Airways Employee Consortium on Friday announced their partnership with AdiGroup to bid for the acquisition of 75 per cent stake in the debt-ridden Jet Airways through the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) process.
“Jet Airways Employee Consortium and AdiGroup are delighted to announce their partnership to bid for the acquisition of 75 per cent of Jet Airways through NCLT process,” Captain Ashwani Tyagi of Jet Airways Employee Consortium told reporters.
“This is a new dawn in the history of India aviation of operating an airline through Employee Initiative programme where every single employee of Jet Airways will become an owner of the airline,” he added.
AdiGroup founder Sanjay Viswanathan said, “We have been looking at Jet for a few months. We were part of the original process… The airline will fly again in three months wherein 26 per cent of it will be owned by every single employee of Jet.”
Viswanathan said that they have requested the government to extend the Air Operator Permit (AOP), which is expiring on July 16. “AOP is expiring on July 16. If it expires, the NCLT is as good as dead in water. We have requested it to extend. We need prime slots, especially Delhi-Bombay,” he said.
The AdiGroup founder said the Jet Airways needs 70 aircraft against 125, which was used to fly before the airline was grounded in April. On June 21, Mumbai bench of the NCLT had admitted the insolvency application filed by the State Bank of India (SBI) against grounded Jet Airways. The petition had been admitted under Section 7 of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC).
The Bench had said that the matter was of national importance and directed resolution professional, Ashish Chhawchharia of Grant Thornton, to complete the process within three months as against 180 days prescribed in the IBC. The tribunal had also rejected an intervention application moved by Netherlands-
based operational creditors, citing lack of cross-border jurisdiction.
The matter would now be further taken up on July 5 for the filing of a progress report by the resolution professional. Two separate bankruptcy petitions filed by operational creditors — Shaman Wheels and Gaggar Enterprises — who claimed Rs 8.74 crore and Rs 53 lakh respectively from the cash-strapped airline, have also been rejected.
The SBI-led consortium of lenders had decided to take the grounded airline to bankruptcy courts after failing to cobble together a revival plan despite working
on it for over five months. The airline owes over Rs 8,500 crore to the SBI and 25 other financial creditors and over Rs 13,000 crore to hundreds of vendors and the 23,000-odd employees.
The airline, which was started by entrepreneur Naresh Goyal around 25 years ago, was grounded on April 17 after it ran out of cash.