By Suvashree Ghosh
Creditors to a struggling Indian shadow financier, once controlled by former billionaires Shivinder Singh and Malvinder Singh, are finalizing a rare debt recast in the sector by writing off almost half of the company’s loans, people familiar with the matter said.
Lenders to ReligareNSE 2.67 % Finvest Ltd., including State Bank of IndiaNSE -0.19 %, have agreed to take a 49% haircut on its $808 million debt, the people said, asking not to be identified as the information isn’t public. The restructuring may be implemented as early as the end of January, they said.
Any debt restructuring at Religare Finvest, which is being bought by TCG Advisory Services Ltd., would be the first among peers since the credit market squeeze started in 2018. It could also be considered as an early sign of a winding down of that crisis.
The sector’s fate is still far from certain. Other delinquent shadow lenders, including Reliance Home Finance Ltd. and Altico Capital India Ltd., are struggling to rework their debt. Mortgage financier Dewan Housing FinanceNSE 4.73 % Corp. is facing bankruptcy.
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A representative for Religare Finvest and SBI’s spokesman didn’t immediately respond to requests for comments.
Religare Finvest, which had faced allegations of financial irregularities under the previous owners, had since January 2018 been under the Reserve Bank of India’s so-called corrective action plan. That status restricts the financier from making new loans. Banks will implement the debt recast after TCG injects fresh equity into Religare Finvest, the people said.