Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC and Japan-based conglomerate Mitsubishi are engaged in discussions with GMR Infrastructure to acquire a minority stake in GMR Airports.
GMR Airports operates as a subsidiary of GMR Infrastructure, and manages airports in the Indian cities of Delhi and Hyderabad, as well as Cebu in the Philippines.
GMR Airports secured rights to build a new airport in Goa in 2017 and secured the privatisation contract for the Nagpur airport in October last year. It also secured a contract to develop and operate an airport in Crete, Greece, in 2017.
GMR Infrastructure is planning to raise between Rs40bn ($562m) and Rs50bn ($702.48m) through the divestiture of the stake, which will be used to repay part of its Rs200bn ($2.8bn) net debt.
A spokesman for GMR Infrastructure was quoted by The Economic Times as saying: “a number of investors have shown interest [in airports holding company]” and that the company continues “to engage with them constructively.”
GMR Infrastructure recently revealed its plans to demerge the airports holding company in which it currently owns 91.95% stake.
The spokesperson added: “Taking into account the feedback from various stakeholders, the board has appointed a committee to evaluate the merits of a demerger, which we will be doing in consultation with advisors in the coming months.”
GMR Airports reported a profit before tax of Rs3.65bn ($51.28m) for the October-December quarter of 2018, compared to a profit of Rs3.94bn ($55.36m) a year ago.
GMR earlier tried to sell its airport company, including through an IPO. The company has discussed with a number of companies, including the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA) to offload a stake in Hyderabad airport.