DLF aims to sell luxury hotel chain by end December

MUMBAI Thu Nov 15, 2012 5:17pm IST

A man cycles past the construction site of a residential apartment building by property developer DLF Ltd. in Gurgaon January 27, 2010. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi/Files

A man cycles past the construction site of a residential apartment building by property developer DLF Ltd. in Gurgaon January 27, 2010.

Credit: Reuters/Adnan Abidi/Files

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MUMBAI (Reuters) - DLF Ltd(DLF.NS), India's biggest property developer, expects to complete the sale of its Aman Resorts luxury hotel chain by the end of December as it works to sell non-core assets to reduce its 232 billion rupees worth of debt.

DLF has also received shareholder approval to sell its wind energy business and expects to complete that deal by the end of the current fiscal year ending March 31, it said in an analyst presentation on its website on Thursday.

"We expect to complete the sale of Aman Resorts in the next few weeks and the wind energy business in the next two to three months," a DLF spokesman separately told Reuters.

DLF, which recently sold a plot of land in Mumbai for about 27 billion rupees to developer Lodha Group as part of its asset divestment strategy, has been trying to sell Aman Resorts for more than a year.

The Aman Resorts assets for sale include 22 hotels in 12 countries, but not the property in New Delhi.

Sources had told Reuters in January the hotel deal had stalled due to lower-than-expected bids from shortlisted companies. DLF was expecting to sell Aman Resorts for at least $400 million, the sources had said.

DLF is in an advanced stage of "negotiation and documentation" on the Aman Resorts transaction, the company presentation said.

The sale of Aman Resorts and wind energy business will help DLF achieve its target of reducing net debt to 185 billion rupees by March 31, it said.

The company, which builds homes and offices mainly in its key market of north India, reported a 63 percent fall in net profit to 1.39 billion rupees for the July-September quarter compared with 3.72 billion rupees a year earlier.

Shares in DLF rose as much as 3.7 percent on Thursday to 210.40 rupees, while the benchmark Mumbai market index was down 0.8 percent. The stock is up more than 14 percent this year, but lags a 42 percent rise in the BSE realty index.

(Reporting by Aditi Shah; Editing by Matt Driskill)

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