Jet Airways front-runner for Etihad investment - source

NEW DELHI Thu Jan 3, 2013 1:42am IST

1 of 2. A Jet Airways Boeing 777-300ER aircraft sits on the tarmac at Mumbai airport May 13, 2007.

Credit: Reuters/Punit Paranjpe/Files

Stocks

   

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Jet Airways Ltd (JET.NS) is the front-runner for an investment by Etihad Airways, a senior Indian government source said on Wednesday, adding the Gulf carrier could pay up to $330 million for a 24 percent stake in the Indian company.

A deal is likely in the next 10 days, the government official, who declined to be named as he is not authorised to speak to the media on deals between companies, told reporters.

"From what I understand, they were talking about 1,500 crore to 1,800 crore (15-18 billion rupees) for 24 percent," the official said.

Etihad, seeking to widen its operations in India, is in the final stages of talks to buy part of either Jet Airways or grounded rival Kingfisher Airlines (KING.NS), the same official had said on December 17.

Etihad declined comment and a spokeswoman for Jet Airways said she did not have any information on a possible deal.

Etihad and Jet already have a code-sharing agreement, and a tie-up could make Jet a more formidable competitor to state-owned Air India while strengthening Etihad's position against Dubai-based Emirates Airline, which carries a big chunk of the traffic between India and the Middle East.

Cash- and debt-strapped Kingfisher, controlled by liquor baron Vijay Mallya, has been scrambling to find an investor for more than a year and has not flown since the start of October. Its operating licence expired at the end of December.

Jet Airways shares, currently valued at about $920 million, closed 0.3 percent higher on Wednesday ahead of the remarks by the government official.

Jet shares jumped 62 percent between October and December on investor hopes for a deal after India decided to allow foreign carriers to buy stakes of up to 49 percent in local carriers.

(Reporting by Anurag Kotoky; Writing by Devidutta Tripathy; editing by Sunil Nair)

Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Press Event

Press Event

Modi takes tea, but no questions, in first press event as PM.  Full Article 

School Shooting

School Shooting

Two killed, four wounded in Washington state school shooting.  Full Article 

Sundar Pichai Elevated

Sundar Pichai Elevated

Google's Pichai to oversee major products and services.  Full Article 

Need For Reforms

Need For Reforms

Euro zone risks "relapse into recession" without structural reforms - Draghi.  Full Article 

Diwali Sales

Diwali Sales

Gold sales jump about 20 pct for Diwali - trade body  Full Article 

World Bank Rival

World Bank Rival

Three major nations absent as China launches W.Bank rival in Asia  Full Article 

Wal-Mart India

Wal-Mart India

Murali Lanka appointed as Wal-Mart India operations chief  Full Article 

Health Of Lenders

Health Of Lenders

25 European banks set to fail health checks - sources.  Full Article 

India Insight

India Insight

Kalki Koechlin on her role as a disabled girl in “Margarita, With a Straw”  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage