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Real estate giant DLF Ltd has taken command of its joint venture with Hilton Hotels and is selling that hospitality property as part of its strategy to divest non-core assets. This will help DLF cut its debt of Rs 22,519 crore. DLF acquired the additional 26 per cent stake in its joint venture company with Hilton International thus now holding 74% of the JV.

According to people close to the deal, the valuation of the 26 per cent stake is nearly Rs 120 crore. The DLF spokesperson said, “This transaction was done to take complete ownership of the company and its underlying assets, including inbuilt hotel sites, with a view to monetise them,” he said, adding that it was a part of DLF’s on-going non-core divestment strategy.

Earlier the company was not in favour of offloading its stake in the Hilton JV as the hotel was in its mall premises in Delhi. Confirming the development, a Hilton Worldwide spokesperson said, “DLF has bought the 26 per cent shareholding of Hilton Worldwide in the Hilton-DLF joint venture company. We value our relationship with DLF, and our association will continue through managing the DLF-owned Hilton Garden Inn brand hotel in Saket, New Delhi." DLF recently adopted a strategy to divest its non-core businesses, which includes hospitality. It has also been in talks with several players for sale of Aman Hotels and Resorts.

“Hilton will no longer be restricted in its expansion plans. DLF can also make an exit from this venture now,” a senior analyst said. The company’s net debt rose to Rs 22,519 crore, up Rs 1000 crore during the second quarter of the financial year. It aims to cut debt to Rs 19,000 crore from 19,500 crore by the end of this financial year and to Rs 10,000 crore by 2013 through the sale of its non-core assets.

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