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NCLT extends deadline for completion of insolvency resolution of Future Retail to Aug 17

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Debt-ridden Future Retail Ltd’s (FRL) bankruptcy resolution will have to wait a little longer now that the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) has extended the deadline for the firm’s insolvency proceedings to August.The Mumbai bench granted FRL’s request to omit 33 days from the corporate bankruptcy resolution process on October 17, 2023. 

According to a regulatory filing, the Mumbai court granted FRL’s request to exempt 33 days from the corporate insolvency resolution process (CIRP). 

”In furtherance of the foregoing, the NCLT heard the application on July 17, 2023, and approved the stated exclusion of 33 days’ from FRL’s CIRP,” said FRL. 

 It went on to say, ”As a result, the deadline for completing the CIRP of FRL is August 17, 2023.” According to FRL, this is based on an oral decision by the NCLT bench, and a written order is pending. 

Earlier in April, the NCLT bench granted FRL a 90-day extension until July 15, 2023 to complete the CIRP. 

NCLT

The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) requires that CIRP be completed within 330 days, including time spent on litigation. 

Following a loan default, NCLT initiated the CIRP against FRL on July 20, 2022. 

According to Section 12(1) of the Code, the CIRP must be completed within 180 days after its inception. 

However, the NCLT may grant a one-time extension of 90 days. The maximum time frame for completing CIRP, including any extension or litigation term, is 330 days. 

FRL had stated that it had received six bids from prospective buyers by May 15, the deadline for filing of resolution plans. 

The deadline for submitting resolution plans for the 48 enterprises on the final list of ‘Eligible Prospective Resolution Applicants’ was May 15, 2023. 

This occurred despite the fact that FRL lenders issued revised Expressions of Interest (EoIs) and invited new bids after separating their assets into clusters. 

Under the labels Big Bazaar, Easyday, and Foodhall, FRL operated numerous retail formats in the hypermarket, supermarket, and home segments. At its peak, FRL had over 1,500 locations in approximately 430 cities. 

It was one of 19 Future group firms in retail, wholesale, logistics, and storage that were due to be transferred to Reliance Retail as part of a Rs 24,713-crore deal announced in August 2020. 

However, lenders had rejected Reliance’s buyout of the 19 Future group companies, including FRL, due to Amazon’s legal challenge. 

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