Shares in embattled Indian wind OEM Suzlon spiked upwards by almost half in the first days of 2020, as reports said the group will present a restructuring plan to creditors next week that asks them to take a major ‘haircut’ on its debts.
Shares in Suzlon – which spent the majority of 2019 trying to regain financial stability – were trading at 2.74 rupees in early afternoon in Mumbai on Thursday, 47% up on the 1.85 rupees at which they ended last year. The rise still leaves the shares at a fraction of the 28 rupees they were valued at in 2015 and continues a rollercoaster ride for Suzlon's stock.
The latest spike comes as Bloomberg reported on Thursday that Suzlon will meet its Indian lenders next week, to discuss a restructuring plan that would involve them accepting a 68% discount on its debts. The financial newswire cited unnamed sources familiar with the matter. Suzlon has been contacted for comment by Recharge.
Denying earlier reports that it was about to tip into bankruptcy, Suzlon said in September that it had until January 2020 to reach an agreement with creditors before any “extreme measures” by its lenders. Founder Tulsi Tanti was quoted by local media last month as saying bankers understand that India “cannot afford” to lose Suzlon.
Suzlon – which has described its own debts of around $1.5bn as unsustainable – has seen its commercial position stagnate due to the twin drags of its own financial pressures and a tough Indian wind power market.
It posted a second-quarter loss of 7.8bn ($108m) rupees for the three months ending September, widening from a year earlier 6.27bn rupees, as CEO JP Chalasani admitted Suzlon’s “operations are at a subdued level with minimal allocation of funding as we are trying to fix our capital structure”.
The pressure ramped up further when reported separate debt restructuring packages involving investment by Canada’s Brookfield and Danish OEM Vestas came to nothing.