Future Retail issues deadline to Amazon to confirm willingness to pay debt owed to lenders

Future Retail asks Amazon to confirm its willingness to fund debt to repay its lenders by January 29 to prevent its debt from being classified as NPAs.

Future Retail, which manages the Big Bazaar chain of hypermarket stores, is required to repay its lenders by January 29 in order to prevent its debt from being classified as NPAs.

Kishor Biyani promoted Future Retail (FRL) has sought a ₹3,500 crore long-term loan from Amazon by January 24 since the US-based online retail behemoth has opposed the dale of its small-format stores. The proceeds of this would have been used to repay FRL lenders and avoid default.

“FRL is in dire need of cash infusion urgently in order to repay its lenders. FRL is required to pay its lenders ₹3,500 crore by January 29 as an NPA”, said the letter dated January 21. Accordingly, the independent directors asked the e-commerce giant to provide the confirmations for such funds by January 22, 2022.

“Once you have provided these confirmations in writing and agree to infuse ₹3,500 in order to repay FRL’s lenders by January 29, 2022, we would be happy to assess a detailed proposal and meet Amazon India Head Abhijeet Muzumdar”, it said. Subsequently, the letter added, “Coming to specific aspects of your proposal – we  note that your letter refers to a potential transaction between Samara Capital and FRL as a ‘solution’.”

“As you know, FRL is the Multi-brand retail sector and FDI in this sector is limited. You are also aware that Amazon’s transaction in Future Coupons, had resulted in regulatory scrutiny, including by the CCI of India, as well as enquiries by the Enforcement Directorate,” it said.

“It is therefore critical any investment being proposed is in compliance with all applicable laws, including FDI laws, CCI regulations and SEBI regulations, and that any such transaction should not raise further regulatory scrutiny.”

 

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