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Cash-strapped Jet Airways seeks soft financing of $350 million from Etihad

Press Trust of India/Mumbai 06 Dec 18 | 04:25 PM

(Photo courtesy: Jet Airways)

Cash-crunched Jet Airways has sought a soft financing of $350 million from its investment partner Etihad Airways, as it continues to hold discussions with the latter to offload additional stake in the carrier, an airline source said Thursday.

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The Abu Dhabi-based Etihad had come to the rescue of the Naresh Goyal-controlled airline during the earlier downturn too.

In 2013, it had acquired 24 per cent stake in Jet Airways for Rs 20.6 billion, besides extending low-interest loan of $150 million as well as purchasing 50.1 per cent stake in its loyalty programme JetPrivilege.

ALSO READ: Jet Airways promoters close to deal with SBI-led consortium of lenders

"Jet Airways has sought $350 million soft loan from Etihad even as its discussions with the the Gulf carrier continue for selling additional stake," the source privy to development told PTI.

The Middle-Eastern airline has, however, offered to finance as much as $200 million, the source said.

"A final decision on the proposal is yet to be taken," the source added.

ALSO READ: Etihad in talks with debt-laden Jet Airways on rescue deal: Sources

When contacted, both Jet Airways and Etihad refused to comment on the deal.

"Etihad does not comment on rumour or speculation," an Etihad Airways spokesperson said in an e-mail response to PTI.

A Jet Airways spokesperson also said that the carrier does not comment on "speculation" in line with its policy.

With three back-to-back quarterly losses and a net debt of Rs 8.52 billion as on September 30, the airline is working on ways to raise funds and reduce costs.

ALSO READ: Jet Airways offers up to 30% discount in year end sale: Know the details

Last month, Jet Airways chief executive officer Vinay Dube had said the airline was in active discussions with various investors to secure sustainable financing.

The company's scrip ended the day 3.03 per cent lower at Rs 278.20 apiece on the BSE, against 1.59 per cent decline in the benchmark.

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