August 31, 2017: Travel services firm Bird Group has expressed interest in acquiring Air India’s profitmaking ground-handling subsidiary formally, aviation secretary RN Choubey stated while speaking on the sidelines of an Assocham conference.

While IndiGo is looking to acquire the state-run airline, the Bird Group’s interest is limited to the ground-handling business under Air India Air Transport Services Ltd (AIATSL).

This comes as the government earlier decided to clear the disinvestment of debt-laden Air India and five of its subsidiaries after hopes of the airline’s revival turned bleak.

The Bird Group had reportedly written a letter, expressing its interest, to the aviation ministry in July.

AIATSL shares its revenue with parent company Air India. At 25 percent, its market share is the highest among the ground-handling companies in the country, say reports.

Meanwhile, for Air India disinvestment, the government has decided to appoint transaction advisers, said Finance Minister Arun Jaitley after a ministerial group met to discuss various aspects of the stake sale.

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