NCLT approves Adani Ports and SEZ’s takeover of Karaikal Port, ET EnergyWorld

National company law tribunal has approved Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Limited’s Rs. 1485 crore offer for Karaikal Port Limited which was made under the insolvency and bankruptcy code (IBC) process as per a court order the contents of which ET has reviewed.

Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone was pitted against Vedanta Limited, JSW Infra, a consortium of RKG Fund and Sagacious Capital and Jindal Power all of whom had submitted expressions of interest to acquire Karaikal Port.

ET had first reported on 2 December that Adani Port and Special Economic Zone had emerged as the winning bidder for Karaikal Port.

Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone confirmed the development in a stock exchange filing on Saturday.

“The acquisition of Karaikal Port is another milestone in consolidating our position as India’s largest transport utility. With acquisition of Karaikal port APSEZ now operates 14 ports in India. APSEZ will spend further INR 850 crores over time to upgrade infrastructure in order to reduce the logistics cost for the customers. We are envisaging to double the capacity of the port in the next 5 years and also add container terminal to make it a multipurpose port”, said Karan Adani, chief executive officer, Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone.

Karaikal Port is an all-weather deep water port developed on build, operate and transfer format under a public private partnership arrangement between the government of Puducherry and MARG, a Chennai-headquartered infrastructure developer promoted by former merchant banker GRK Reddy. MARG Limited had incorporated a special purpose vehicle to develop the port. The port was commissioned in 2009.

It has handled diverse cargo such as coal, sugar, cement, fertilisers, project cargo, agro commodities, liquid cargo and containers.

The NCLT’s Chennai bench had admitted Karaikal Port for insolvency proceedings via an order dated April 29, following an application made by one of its financial creditors, Omkara Asset Reconstruction Company. Subsequently, the NCLT appointed Rajesh Sheth as the company’s resolution professional. He is backed by Deloitte. Law firm Saraf and partners and senior advocates Omprakash and Gopal Jain and advocate Giridharan acted as legal counsels.

The company has debt of Rs 2,960 crore that it was unable to repay.

As per the NCLT order approving the acquisition of Karaikal Port, the company’s fair value arrived at by external valuers was Rs. 1215 crore. The valuers placed the liquidation value of the company at Rs. 822 crore.

  • Published On Apr 3, 2023 at 08:20 AM IST

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