Competition Commission approves Tata-Air India deal

CCI’s approval paves the way for completion of transaction

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has approved the Tata Group’s proposed acquisition of debt-laden Air India and two of its units.

“The CCI approves acquisition of shareholding in Air India Ltd., Air India Express Ltd. and Air India SATS Airport Services Pvt. by Talace Pvt. Ltd.,” the CCI said in a release on Monday.

The CCI’s nod for the ₹18,000 crore-deal that entails Talace taking over ₹15,300 crore of debt, paves the way for completion of the transaction and the revival of the ailing carrier.

Talace Pvt. Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of Tata Sons, emerged as the winning bidder in October. It will buy 100% stakes in Air India and Air India Express and 50% holding in Air India SATS (AISATS).

AISATS provides ground handling services at Delhi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Mangalore and Thiruvananthapuram airports. It also provides cargo handling services at Bengaluru airport.

State-owned Air India has been incurring a monthly loss of over ₹600 crore.

Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia, on December 14, said the Air India transaction was a “win-win situation” across the board and that taxpayers’ money would now be more justifiably used for many more socially productive purposes rather than filling the deep losses of the airline.

“I am very confident at the turn of the New Year, you will have the transfer of Air India to its new owner,” Mr. Scindia had said.

(With PTI inputs)

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