HCC Concessions, an infra building arm of HCC Group, has completed the sale of Farakka-Raiganj Highways Ltd (FRHL) to Cube Highways and Infrastructure II Pte, at an enterprise value of ₹1,508 crore. FRHL, which forms part of the main arterial highway in West Bengal, is among the largest public-private partnership (PPP) projects in India. Cube Highways is a platform controlled by I Squared Capital, Abu Dhabi Investment Authority and IFC. Arjun Dhawan, Group CEO, HCC, informed that the total estimated payout of ₹603 crore to HCC Group includes a cash payment of ₹270 crore, which combines equity consideration and contractor payments, and ₹233 crore of holdbacks to be released on the completion of dispute resolution with NHAI. It also includes ₹100 crore of earnout payable in 2023 contingent on traffic projections. As part of the agreement with Cube, HCC Group will be entitled to a revenue share from FRHL over the entire concession period. The deal amount excludes a structure section of the project, which was descoped by NHAI, and for which Cube has offered a contingent payout. A successful closure with NHAI in the coming months of its tolling right confirmation would entitle HCC Group to additional consideration of ₹200 crore.
The CEO informed that the company faced various challenges in developing the project, from lengthy land acquisition delays to meeting the expectations of numerous stakeholders while executing in major towns such as Farakka, Kaliachawk, Malda, and Gajol. With the support of NHAI and lenders, FRHL became the most valuable asset in the concessions portfolio. The consortium of lenders to FRHL is led by Yes Bank and comprises Indian Bank, ARCIL, IIFCL, Bank of Baroda, Punjab National Bank and Union Bank of India.