ICICI Bank buys Dunlop House

Mumbai: A year after it went on the block, the Dunlop House at Worli is finally sold. The one-acre commercial property has been bought for a rupee more than its reserve price of Rs 200 crore. And the buyer happens to be none other than the bank that had put it up for auction – ICICI Bank.

Located on Dr Annie Besant Road, the building was earlier owned by tyre manufacturer Dunlop India. The Ruia Group led by Pawan Kumar Ruia took control of it after they took over Dunlop India from the Chhabria family in 2005.

The landmark property was attached after the Ruia Group failed to pay up a loan it had taken from ICICI. By December 2013, the principal plus interest on the loan had shot up to Rs 519 crore. In 2011, the Ruia Group had first tried to sell off the Dunlop House for Rs 400 crore, but could not succeed. After ICICI took possession of the property, they too put it up for auction. In the auction notice issued in February 2016, the reserve price was kept at Rs 297.90 crore. But the efforts didn’t evoke much response.

The property went under the block again in April this year with the reserve price of Rs 240 crore. Even this offer found no takers. Yet again, the price was revised to Rs 200 crore. Insiders revealed that the situation was no different this time around as well. With no one coming forward to buy the property, ICICI decided to buy it. They paid a rupee over the reserve price.

BOUGHT IT FOR FUTURE: BANK
ICICI bank officials said that they intend to sell the space in the future. “Dunlop House was mortgaged with ICICI Bank as security. The Bank decided to enforce its rights on the property. The enforcement was challenged up to the Supreme Court and with the permission of the court the property was put up for auction,” said a bank spokesperson in an email response.

The bank said the auction was delayed due to prolonged litigation which impacted potential bidders from bidding for it. The spokesperson said, “As permitted under the SARFAESI Act, the Bank bid for the property and has purchased it. With this transaction, the litigation on the enforcement has been concluded. This will now facilitate potential bidders to purchase the property from the Bank in due course.”

Credits Mumbai Mirror

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