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Suzlon debt recast to be finalised in two months: SBI

Source : BUSINESS_STANDARD
Last Updated: Sat, Nov 10, 2012 04:10 hrs

A restructuring package for Suzlon should be ready in about two months, said State Bank of India.

SBI is the largest lender in the bankers group which had lent to Suzlon, whose total debt is about Rs 13,000 crore.

“We are examining the proposal and should be able to admit the company in corporate debt restructuring (CDR) in two months,” Santosh Nayar, deputy managing director (large corporate group), SBI, told reporters while announcing the bank’s quarterly results.

In June, when the company had to redeem bonds worth $360 mn, it managed to get a 45-day extension from bondholders. A consortium of banks loaned it money at the time to tide over the crisis.

It was then was due to pay foreign currency convertible bondholders $220 million, with interest, on October 11. It requested them for a four-month extension of the redemption date; this was refused. Suzlon, then, approached its lenders, last month, for a debt recast.

Pratip Chaudhuri, chairman of SBI, said: “The banks have referred Suzlon to the CDR cell because we feel there is a case for restructuring. The problem is that Suzlon took short-term liabilities but their buyers will pay over the long term. So, there is a mismatch.” Adding: “The company is in the clean energy space, the business will do well in future and their order book looks very strong.”

He also said, “It is competing with companies like Siemens and GE. So, they need access to good quality engineering, maybe German companies.”

Earlier, SBI had suggested the company use leverage and later merge its German subsidiary, REpower, as the latter was almost debt-free and had a huge cash pile. SBI has exposure of about Rs 3,500 crore to Suzlon, followed by IDBI Bank with about Rs 2,000 crore.




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