Adani Group takes control of the Mumbai Airport
The big dispute over the GVK stake in Mumbai International Airport Limited (MIAL) is finally over with control of MIAL likely to fall entirely in the hands of Adani Group. Adani Group had already acquired 23.5% stake in MIAL from two South African investors who had been looking for an exit route. The bone of contention was the 50.5% stake in MIAL owned by GVK group, which was unwilling to hand over control of MIAL to the Adani Group. However, with mounting debt burden and lender pressure, GVK group finally relented.
MIAL is stuck with an overall debt burden of Rs.8,000 crore and with the GVK group stretched financially, they were in no position to address the debt. It was this debt burden which Adani has agreed to take over and in lieu of that the GVK group will transfer their shareholdings to Adani group. With a combined 74% in MIAL, the Adani Group will get total control over the Mumbai Airport. Gautam Adani topped up the acquisition with a promise to revitalize the entire airport ecosystem and create thousands of jobs.
Interestingly, this deal comes just a month ahead of Adani group’s plans to commence work on the Navi Mumbai International Airport. The new airport is expected to be commissioned in 2024. The Adani Group already controls 6 airports in their portfolio. With the addition of MIAL to its airports portfolio, the Adani group virtually controls 25% of all passenger footfalls in India as well as 33% of India’s air cargo movement. This move will effectively bring down the curtains on the involvement of GVK group in the airports business.
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