After some hopes were raised for a duration when the South American airline operator, Synergy Group had submitted its expression of interest (EoI) and a proposal to revive Jet Airways, the Committee of Creditors (CoC) to the beleaguered airline has now decided to go ahead and monetise the assets of the company in order to recover whatever they can.
To begin with one aircraft and two slots in the Schiphol airport in Amsterdam have been chosen for sale and the CoC, through the resolution professional (RP), have found the Dutch carrier KLM Royal Dutch Airlines ready to buy these for a consideration of $23 million. The aircraft being sold is part of six aircraft on lease with the US Exim Bank. Now, KLM will release $13 million to the US Exim Bank which will then release all the six aircraft. The CoC and RP will later consider what is to be done with the remaining five aircraft.
Despite these moves, the creditors have not abandoned their efforts at finding a suitable buyer to takeover and revive Jet Airways. The only thing is there is no time left. The last date to submit the expression of interest has passed by and apart from Synergy Group, there are no other bidders. The Hinduja Group has been showing some interest but have not submitted the EoI. There is very little likelihood of the CoC extending the deadline for submission of EoI, unless the Hindujas specifically approach the RP and show some seriousness.
Asish Chhawchharia, the resolution professional says he has already interacted with KLM and the US Exim Bank on the deal and it is progressing. Of the proceeds received, $3 million will be retained towards meeting the expenses involved in the insolvency resolution process. The remaining amount will go to the lenders based on a formula to be worked out among the lenders and approved by the NCLT.
When Jet Airways shut down its operations in April 2019, it had 16,000 employees in the permanent category and another 6,500 on contract. There have been 5,100 on the airline’s rolls since then without receiving their salaries for almost a year now.
The total identified and certified debt is around ₹14,000 crore.