Business

AI on our radar: Vistara chief

Who won’t be interested in evaluating a sovereign airline, asks Vistara chief Bhaskar Bhat.

Who won’t be interested in evaluating a sovereign airline, asks Vistara chief Bhaskar Bhat.   | Photo Credit: V.V. Krishnan

Decision on bidding will be taken later, says Bhat.

With the government restarting the process of Air India’s (AI) disinvestment this year, Vistara chairman Bhaskar Bhat said they were evaluating the national carrier and that a decision on bidding would be taken later.

After its unsuccessful bid to sell 76% stake in AI in 2018, the central government, this time, has decided to offload its entire stake.

Mr. Bhat told reporters, “We are evaluating AI. Which company would not be interested in evaluating a sovereign airline of the country?... Whether we bid or not comes later.”

Asked if Vistara or Tata Sons were evaluating AI, Mr. Bhat replied: “We (Vistara) are a joint venture.”

The government in January restarted the divestment process of AI and invited bids for selling 100% of its equity in the state-owned airline, including AI’s 100% shareholding in AI Express Ltd. and 50% in Air India SATS Airport Services Private Ltd. The last date for putting bids is March 17 and interested bidders should have a net worth of ₹3,500 crore.

The government expects to complete the sale of AI in the first half of the next fiscal, DIPAM Secretary Tuhin Kanta Pandey had said.

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Printable version | Apr 6, 2020 6:16:21 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/business/ai-on-our-radar-vistara-chief/article30965966.ece

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