Srei Infrastructure Finance Ltd is gearing up to sell some properties of Deccan Chronicle Holdings Ltd, the beleaguered media empire.
Srei had an exposure of about Rs205 crore, of which it has already written off about Rs70 crore which weren’t backed by assets.
It now plans to sell close to five properties in Hyderabad and Chennai mortgaged against loans, which would help the Kolkata-based lender recover a large part of the balance amount, vice chairman Sunil Kanoria said.
“There are some properties mortgaged to us. We have made assessment of the value of the properties and we are in the process of disposal. Also, we are trying to work out with other institutions and banks.
The newspaper business is still running and operational while there are challenges to the brands that various institutions have initiated. But we believe the properties would fetch us certain value so we have not written off 100% of the loan,” Kanoria has told analysts.
Srei has already written off Rs24 crore plus the interest reversal of about Rs46 crore in the previous quarter.
Srei’s move follows similar efforts by others among the 28 key lenders to DCHL, which have already proceeded against it under Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest Act.
Recently, Indiabulls Housing Finance Ltd took possession of a bungalow, one of the five assets mortgaged to it by DCHL for recovering a loan of Rs93 crore.
Srei, meanwhile, is developing a prototype of a low-cost automated teller machine (ATM) for deployment in rural areas as part of an initiative to set up white-label cash dispensers, for which it had earlier received approval from the Reserve Bank of India, Kanoria said.
Srei Sahaj e-Village Ltd operates 26,000 common services centres covering 29 crore people across six states. Through this network, Srei Infra plans to launch its white-label ATMs, and, if it get a bank licence, may turn them into rural bank branches.