DLF aims to sell Aman Resorts luxury hotel chain by year-end to pare debt

DLF aims to sell Aman Resorts luxury hotel chain by year-end to pare debt
Mumbai:

DLF, India's biggest property developer, expects to complete the sale of its Aman Resorts luxury hotel chain by the end of December as it works to sell non-core assets to reduce its Rs. 232 billion (Rs. 23,200 crore) worth of debt.

DLF has also received shareholder approval to sell its wind energy business and expects to complete that deal by the end of the current fiscal year ending March 31, it said in an analyst presentation on its website on Thursday.

"We expect to complete the sale of Aman Resorts in the next few weeks and the wind energy business in the next two to three months," a DLF spokesman separately told Reuters.

DLF, which recently sold a plot of land in Mumbai for about Rs. 27 billion (Rs 2,700 crore) to developer Lodha Group as part of its asset divestment strategy, has been trying to sell Aman Resorts for more than a year.

The Aman Resorts assets for sale include 22 hotels in 12 countries, but not the property in New Delhi.

Sources had told Reuters in January the hotel deal had stalled due to lower-than-expected bids from shortlisted companies. DLF was expecting to sell Aman Resorts for at least $400 million (Rs. 2,190 crore), the sources had said.

DLF is in an advanced stage of "negotiation and documentation" on the Aman Resorts transaction, the company presentation said.

The sale of Aman Resorts and wind energy business will help DLF achieve its target of reducing net debt to Rs. 185 billion (Rs. 18,500 crore) by March 31, it said.

The company, which builds homes and offices mainly in its key market of north India, reported a 63 per cent fall in net profit to Rs. 1.39 billion (Rs. 139 crore) for the July-September quarter compared with Rs. 3.72 billion (Rs. 372 crore) a year earlier.

Shares in DLF rose as much as 3.7 per cent on Thursday to Rs. 210.40, while the benchmark Sensex was down 0.8 per cent. The stock is up more than 14 per cent this year, but lags a 42 per cent rise in the BSE realty index.

Copyright @Thomson Reuters 2012