Within days of Essar Group signing a mega $12.9-billion asset sale in its oil business, three top lenders — ICICI Bank, Axis Bank and StanChart have got back an estimated $2.5 billion as part of the first payment for their debt exposure to the Ruias-led conglomerate.
The two Indian lenders — which together had an exposure of $1.5 billion — will get back nearly half of their money or about $770 million in cash while further $750 million of debt will get transferred to Rosneft-led consortium and Essar’s ports and other businesses, as per the terms agreed upon by them.
Out of the total cash component, nearly $350 million was paid in cash to the two Indian banks last night, which together with interest payout of about $100 million takes their total collection from Essar to about $450 million, banking sources said. Between the two Indian lenders, ICICI Bank’s share is nearly three-fourths while that of Axis Bank is about one-fourth — in the total exposure as well as repayments.
In the case of StanChart, whose total exposure was much higher at over $3.3 billion, the bank has decided to opt for a larger cash component of about $2.1 billion for repayment of its loans.