• Monday, November 28, 2022

Business

Tata officially takes over Air India: ‘Delighted to have it back’

Representational Image (Photo by INDRANIL MUKHERJEE/AFP via Getty Images)

By: Shubham Ghosh

INDIAN multinational conglomerate Tata Group on Thursday (27) officially took over the reins of national carrier Air India from the Indian government.

N Chandrasekaran, the chairman of Tata Sons who met prime minister Narendra Modi ahead of the official handover, said, “We are totally delighted to have Air India back at the Tata group.”

The government sold the debt-ridden carrier to Talace Private Limited, a subsidiary of the Tata Group’s holding company, for rupees 18,000 crore (£1.7 billion) last October.

ALSO READ: Air India handover to Tata Group delayed by a month

Following that, a letter of intent was issued to the Tata Group confirming the government’s willingness to sell its 100 per cent stake in the airline. The government had signed the share purchase agreement for the deal.

Air India ‘comes home’: Tata Sons wins carrier bid at £1.7b

Under the deal, the Tata Group will also be handed over Air India Express and 50 per cent stake in Air India SATS, a ground handling arm.

N Chandrasekaran welcomed
Tata Sons chairman N Chandrasekaran (right) being welcomed as he arrives at the Air India office in New Delhi, India, on January 27, 2022. (ANI Photo/Rahul Singh)

Tatas won the bid against the rupees 15,100-crore (£1.49 billion) offer by a consortium led by SpiceJet promoter Ajay Singh and the reserve price of rupees 12,906 crore (£1.28 billion) set by the Indian government for the sale of its 100 per cent stake in the carrier.

Air India will be the third airline brand in the Tata Group’s stable.

The company holds a majority interest in AirAsia India and Vistara, a joint venture with Singapore Airlines Ltd.

Tatas, however, would not get to retain non-core assets such as the Vasant Vihar Housing colony of Air India, Air India Building at Nariman Point, Mumbai, and Air India Building in New Delhi.

Tatas had set up Tata Airlines in 1932, which was renamed as Air India in 1946.

The government took control of the airline in 1953 but JRD Tata continued to be its chairman till 1977.

The latest handover will be the homecoming of Air India to Tatas after nearly seven decades.

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