No takers for Videocon’s energy biz; September 30 new deadline for resolution

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September 07, 2021 4:00 AM

Any delay in selling the assets of VOVL, which is engaged in oil and gas extraction through global subsidiary firms, would hold up the entire resolution process of the parent company, Videocon.

In its order, the tribunal also asked promoter Venugopal Dhoot to disclose the group’s properties and bank accounts in India and abroad.

A consortium of lenders is yet to receive any bids for the sale of debt-laden Videocon group’s energy business, even though a couple of firms had expressed interest earlier. Following this, the Committee of Creditors (CoC), led by SBI, has decided to extend the deadline for Videocon Oil Ventures’ (VOVL’s) resolution process till September 30, sources close to the development said.

Any delay in selling the assets of VOVL, which is engaged in oil and gas extraction through global subsidiary firms, would hold up the entire resolution process of the parent company, Videocon.

Earlier in 2018, SBI Capital Markets, on behalf of SBI, had called for expressions of interest (EoI) for the sale of oil and gas assets owned by VOVL. Four companies, including Vedanta and Petrobras, had submitted EoIs. But, none of them submitted a final bid, a source said. The CoC comprises a total of 21 lenders, including 13 banks such as SBI, ICICI Bank, Bank of Baroda, Vijaya Bank, Punjab National Bank and Bank of Maharashtra.

Videocon, in its earlier submission before the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), had stated that all the assets of the group should be bundled together for the sale process. However, the CoC had decided to sell certain assets separately. Mails sent to former promoters of Videocon Group went unanswered at the time of going to press on Monday.

Videocon Group is currently under Corporate Insolvency Resolution Process (CIRP), with Twin Star Technologies (a company in which Vedanta Group promoter holds a stake) agreeing to buy its assets. However, in July, the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) stayed the deal based on an appeal filed by the Bank of Maharashtra.
Bank of Maharashtra, which has an exposure of Rs 1,216.88 crore to Videocon Group, had alleged “breach of regulations”, including payments through non-convertible debentures and equities to dissenting financial creditors, for seeking the stay.

Later, the Supreme Court refused to set aside NCLAT’s stay, and directed the appellate tribunal to give its final decision on September 7.

Last week, the Mumbai bench of NCLT ordered freezing of Videocon group’s bank accounts and attaching its properties, following a petition by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs. In its order, the tribunal also asked promoter Venugopal Dhoot to disclose the group’s properties and bank accounts in India and abroad.

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