Billionaire Gautam Adani’s ports unit will prepay a short-term debt due next month amounting to 10 billion rupees ($121 million) as the Indian tycoon attempts to soothe investors following a short seller attack that has put his empire’s financial health under the scanner.
Adani Ports & Special Economic Zone Ltd. will prepay the debt raised through commercial paper after it repaid 15 billion rupees of similar debt due on Monday as scheduled, the company’s spokesperson said. India’s largest-private-sector ports operator used its cash balance and funds generated from business operations to pay its short-term debt due on Monday.
The move follows an earlier announcement by Adani Ports where it said it is considering repaying a debt of about 50 billion rupees in the year starting April, thereby improving net debt to earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization ratio to about 2.5 times from just over 3 times currently.
A report late last month by short-seller Hindenburg Research accusing the conglomerate of fraud triggered a rout in the group’s bonds and shares charges that Adani has called “bogus.” The conglomerate has said that its companies face no material refinancing risk and have no near-term liquidity requirements.
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