Aurobindo Pharma, Cadila Healthcare, UPL and two other companies are in the fray to acquire the bankrupt Sterling Biotech Ltd. through the liquidation process. The other two companies in the race are ACG Associated Capsules and Gland Celsus Bio Chemicals.
Last month, the liquidator launched a tender for the liquidation process of Sterling Biotech to sell it as a going concern at a reserve price of Rs 548.46 crore.
Lovkesh Batra, a member of the liquidation team led by Mamta Binani, told The Economic Times that the shortlist of entities seeking to acquire the world’s sixth largest pharmaceutical gelatin maker has been reduced by about a dozen aspirants. .
“Qualified bidders will have 15 days from August 23 to inspect Sterling Biotech, and the auction will take place on September 9, 2021,” a person familiar with the matter told the daily.
Sterling Biotech and its subsidiaries – Sterling SEZ and Sterling International – collectively owe Rs 15,000 crore to operational and financial creditors. “Even when the company is threatened with liquidation, it has retained its licenses and approvals, and it has around 1,000 people,” they added.
Sterling Biotech has its manufacturing units located in Vadodara, Karakhadi and Masar in Gujarat and one in Ooty, Tamil Nadu. The company’s consolidated turnover for fiscal years 20 and 21 was Rs 345.69 crore and Rs 347.44 crore, respectively. The gelatin maker is promoted by Chetan and Nitin Sandesara.
The Mumbai National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) admitted the company to the Corporate Insolvency Resolution (CIRP) process following a plea filed by Andhra Bank on June 11, 2018. The court had ordered the liquidation of the company as a going concern. in May 2019.
The Sandesara brothers are said to have fled the country and are believed to be staying in Africa. As of June 2020, the Directorate of Enforcement (ED) had attached properties worth Rs 9,700 crore belonging to the Sandesaras.
Read also: Aurobindo Pharma cancels the agreement of Rs 420 cr to acquire 51% of the capital of Cronus Pharma
Also read: Aurobindo Pharma will invest Rs 420 cr in the veterinary company Cronus for 51% of the capital