Lenders have decided to invite EoI by April 9 and binding bids by April 30.
Mumbai: Buyers looking to acquire the cash-strapped Jet Airways will have to bring in about Rs 4,500 crore to keep the airline flying.
The State Bank of India (SBI), leader of the group of 26 lenders, will next month invite expression of interest (EoI) from buyers willing to take over the airline and would finalise the investor by end-May.
According to SBI officials, there is high investor interest in the airline and the buyer will have to bring in equity of about Rs 4,500 crore to run the airline.
Lenders have decided to invite EoI by April 9 and binding bids by April 30. Jet Airways has a debt of over Rs 8,200 crore and needs to make repayments of up to Rs 1,700 crore this month.
After weeks of speculations and uncertainties over the future course of Jet Airways, which has grounded over 80 planes due to financial woes, approved setting up of an Interim Management Committee to manage and monitor the daily operations and cash flow of the company.
This interim management is said to be drawing up a plan in consultation with the Civil Aviation Ministry to disburse pending salaries of employees.
The Jet Airways pilots union has also written to the State Bank of India, the lead lender to the airline, to ensure that their salaries are not delayed any further.
The National Aviators Guild (NAG), union of pilots, had threatened the old management that it would stop flying from April 1.
The airline’s pilots and senior management have salary dues of almost four months now.
Hopes of improvement in operations are building up with the airline's erswhile promoter Naresh Goyal stepping down and banks agreeing to infuse Rs 1,500 crore as emergency funding to tide over the financial crunch.
On Tuesday a meeting attended by representatives of the SBI, Director General of Civil Aviation BS Bhullar, Civil Aviation Secretary Pradeep Singh Kharola and Jet CEO Vinay Dube discussed about the number of planes to be brought back into operations by the airline.
(With inputs from agencies)