Banks hold key to DC’s IPL future

Following the board meeting,Srinivasan locked himself up with senior officials of several banks to thrash out a compromise.

Written by G.S. Vivek | New Delhi | Published: September 5, 2012 1:13 am

In a last-ditch attempt to keep Deccan Chargers within the IPL,the BCCI on Tuesday asked bankers/ lenders of Deccan Chronicle Holdings Ltd,the owner and operator of the cricket team,to consider a fresh inflow of funds immediately to keep it afloat and then explore a financial revamp under the RBI-evolved Corporate Debt Restructuring mechanism.

After a hour-long meeting on Tuesday evening here,the BCCI working committee refused to extend the September 15 deadline for the franchise to find a prospective buyer or pay off the outstanding dues of the players. The committee,which solely discussed the liquidity crisis of DC,authorised the BCCI president,N Srinivasan,to negotiate and act on behalf of the board to solve the issue.

Following the board meeting,Srinivasan locked himself up with senior officials of several banks to thrash out a compromise. Fearing potential damage to the image of cash-rich IPL,the board is keen that the banks finance the working expenses of the franchise for a year,and in the interim period work out ways — either through gate money or team sponsorships — to recover the debt.

The banks,in turn,have asked some sort of guarantee from the BCCI to recover their money before they put in more money. The BCCI has,however,flatly refused any guarantee.

According to sources,banks that have lent money to the company as unsecured loans will lose their money if the the BCCI decides to dissolve the franchise and encash the bank guarantee.

“From the board’s perspective,we have a bank guarantee which we can encash and pay off the players. If we re-auction the franchise,we have several buyers and BCCI can fetch extra money as well. But the board is keen to explore the middle path wherein Deccan are able to find a prospective buyer and board doesn’t have to invite fresh bids,” a senior BCCI member said. A senior official of the bank said,”It’s a calculated risk we have to take,whether pumping in another little amount,can help us recover a major part of the money already invested. CDR is also an option which we will be approaching.”

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