CCI approves acquisition of Air India stake by Tata sons

On December 20, 2021, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) approved the acquisition of Air India, Air India SATS Airport and Air India Express by Talace, a wholly owned subsidiary of Tata Sons.

Key Points

  • Currently, Air India is wholly owned by the government.
  • Air India, along with AIXL, is primarily engaged in business of providing domestic scheduled air passenger transport service, air cargo transport services and international scheduled air passenger transport service.
  • Air India SATS Airport Services is engaged in providing ground handling services at airports in Delhi, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Mangaluru and Thiruvananthapuram. It also provides cargo handling services at Bengaluru airport.

Acquisition of Air India

Tata Group came into a share purchase agreement with Central government in October 2021, to purchase the stake of centre in national carrier Air India, Air India Express, and AISATS. Following this, a Letter of Intent (LoI) was issued to Tata Group. After SPA, Tata Group had to fulfil the conditions precedent in the agreement before taking over Air India.

Tata’s Bid

Tata Sons’ subsidiary Talace emerged as the highest bidder for AIR India, under the divestment process. Talace had quoted an enterprise value of Rs 18,000 crore for 100 per cent equity shareholding of Centre. Out of 18000 crores, Telace will retain Rs 15300 crore while rest will be paid to Central government as cash component.

Competition Commission of India (CCI)

CCI is the chief national competition regulator in India. It is a statutory body, working under Ministry of Corporate Affairs. It is responsible for enforcing the Competition Act, 2002 for promoting competition and prevent activities. CCI also looks into cases and investigate if it has negative impact on competition.

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