One of India’s biggest state-backed lenders is willing to consider lending additional money to the beleaguered Adani Group including for a project to remodel a slum that is among the world’s largest. Bank of Baroda will extend loans to the conglomerate if it meets the lender’s underwriting standards, said Sanjiv Chadha, chief executive officer and managing director, adding that he’s not concerned about the market volatility around Adani stocks.
The comments offer a degree of support for embattled billionaire Gautam Adani after some banks balked at refinancing a $500 million bridge loan due next month. That came after a report in January from short seller Hindenburg Research sent the group’s assets tumbling. More recently, investor sentiment got a boost when the conglomerate said it will address upcoming maturities.
“You have underwriting standards and you stick to them in good times as well as bad times,” Chadha said in an interview. He declined to elaborate on the bank’s overall exposure to the tycoon’s business empire.
Bank of Baroda’s exposure to the group is about a quarter of what is permitted under the central bank’s framework, Chadha had said earlier this month.
Elsewhere, State Bank of India, the nation’s top lender by assets, said it has an exposure of about 270 billion rupees ($3.3 billion) to companies in the Adani Group.
Bank of Baroda will consider extending loans to the group for its Dharavi redevelopment project, after Adani Group bid 50.7 billion rupees for the project to remodel the slum last year, Chadha said.
“This is subject to an extended due diligence and depends upon concentration limits,” he said.