ICICI begs ONGC and Oil India to spare Shiv Vani

Vol 17, PW 18 (24 Apr 14) People & Policy

ICICI Bank wrote to ONGC and Oil India on April 7 pleading with them to remove troubled driller Shiv-Vani from a tender ‘black-list’ so its Rs580cr ($96m) Corporate Debt Restructuring (CDR) can work.

ONGC confirms receipt of the letter but refuses to disclose how it will respond. “We're looking into the matter,” says a source.

ICICI worries that if Shiv Vani can’t work for ONGC or Oil India it will default on debt repayments. Shiv Vani told the BSE on March 6 the two-year CDR package would begin on April 1 with ICICI as ‘nodal authority’.

Shiv Vani is meanwhile finalising the Master Restructuring Agreement with lenders State Bank of India, Punjab National Bank, YES Bank, Corporation Bank and others. Shiv Vani tells us it is confident ONGC will relax its ban.

"We've written at least 10 letters to ONGC to lift the ban," adds Shiv Vani. "Our management has even approached (ONGC chairman) DK Sarraf.

" Separately, Oil India wants to ban Shiv Vani for failing to mobilise a 2000-hp rig to Mizoram block MZ-ONN-2004/1 by the February 23, 2014 deadline. Also in February, ICICI offered jack-up Shiv Vani Heritage to Jagson International and Deepwater Drilling for an optimistic $45m to try to recover its money.

Citicorp International is separately pursuing a winding up petition against Shiv Vani through the Delhi High Court over a $84m (Rs600cr) foreign currency convertible bond issue.

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