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Thread: Flybe Acquired by Virgin-led Consortium

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    Thumbs up Flybe Acquired by Virgin-led Consortium

    ATW Online; Friday 11 January 2019
    Virgin-led consortium acquires Flybe in $2.8 million takeover deal

    UK regional carrier Flybe will be rebranded as Virgin Atlantic under a £2.2 million ($2.81 million) takeover deal announced Jan. 11 by a consortium comprising Virgin Atlantic Ltd., Stobart Group and Cyrus Capital.

    Exeter-based Flybe said in November that it was seeking a buyer. The airline had run into financial difficulty as a result of high fuel costs, currency fluctuations and the uncertainty surrounding the UK's planned exit from the European Union. Virgin Atlantic confirmed later that month that it was in talks about a possible deal.

    In a joint statement, Virgin Atlantic, Stobart Group and Cyrus Capital said they had formed a new company - Connect Airways - through which they had reached an agreement with Flybe’s board to make a cash offer for the entire share capital of Flybe.

    Stobart Group, the parent company of Ireland-registered aircraft, crew, maintenance and insurance (ACMI) and charter operator Stobart Air, will fold its airline and aircraft leasing businesses into Connect Airways. The three companies have committed to provide a £20 million bridge loan facility, “to support Flybe’s ongoing working capital and operational requirements.”

    Read more at: http://atwonline.com/airlines/virgin...-takeover-deal

    By: Kerry Reals
    NS Comment: Arrangement looks brilliant. Hope it works out well for all concerned.
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    Default Re: Flybe Acquired by Virgin-led Consortium

    ATW Online; Friday 08 February 2019
    Flybe to wind up company if shareholders do not back takeover deal

    UK regional carrier Flybe has told shareholders it had to sell off its operating companies, or face administration, adding that the empty holding company will wind up if shareholders do not back Connect Airways’ takeover offer.

    Flybe is being acquired by Connect Airways, an acquisition vehicle owned by Virgin Atlantic, Stobart Group and Cyrus Capital. Under that deal, Connect Airways will acquire Flybe’s operating subsidiaries, without a shareholder vote. This will be followed by the acquisition of Flybe’s holding company, which requires shareholder approval.

    The structuring of the deal has attracted the ire of Hosking Partners, which manages 18.72% of Flybe’s shares on behalf of several investors. They are demanding answers on why an offer of £0.01 ($0.013) per share was recommended, at a time when the company was trading at £0.16 per share, and after Flybe rejected an offer of over £0.40 from Stobart last year.


    On Feb. 8, Flybe released formal details of the holding-company takeover offer to shareholders. The Exeter-based airline recapped the history behind the sale, saying it had been hard-hit by fuel and foreign exchange prices, coupled with pressure from credit card acquirers. If the card acquirers had put further pressure on Flybe’s liquidity, it would have jeopardized the airline’s ability to continue as a going concern.

    By: Victoria Moores
    Read more at: http://atwonline.com/airlines/flybe-...-takeover-deal

    NS Comment: Come on, Lady Gaga. Somebody will need a poker face here.
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    Default Re: Flybe Acquired by Virgin-led Consortium

    ATW Online; Wednesday 20 February 2019
    Flybe turns down counter takeover bid from Mesa Air Group

    UK regional Flybe has rejected a rival takeover bid from investors led by Mesa Air Group, which seeks to halt the sale of the airline to Virgin Atlantic- and Stobart Group-led consortium Connect Airways.

    Flybe said it had received on Feb. 19 a “preliminary and highly conditional contingency proposal” from an investor group led by US-based Mesa and Bateleur Capital, with indicative support from former Stobart CEO Andrew Tinkler. The proposal is for a capital injection, reported to be in the range of £65 million ($85 million), and replacement of funding provided by Connect Airways.

    By comparison, Connect Airways offered Flybe Group £2.8 million for its operating subsidiaries, none of which is payable to shareholders. Instead, this money will be used to cover costs. Connect Airways also plans to acquire the holding company - a non-trading entity with no subsidiaries or material assets - for the original offer of £0.01 per share, which some shareholders believe grossly undervalues the company.

    As the investor group is aware, Flybe is bound by the terms of the SPA [share purchase agreement] to complete the sale of its operating subsidiaries to Connect Airways,” said Flybe, noting that it had already drawn down the first £15 million of a £20 million credit facility put forward by Connect Airways.

    The airline added that its arrangements with credit card acquirers and banks are “vital” to enable the airline to continue trading, and that those arrangements are conditional on the SPA completing.

    “The board does not believe that the indicative proposal is executable in the timeframe required to enable Flybe to continue to trade,
    ” the regional carrier said.

    “Accordingly, the board emphasizes to shareholders that it continues to regard the arrangements entered into with Connect Airways as being the only viable option available to the company which provides the security that the business needs to continue to trade successfully.”

    Flybe anticipates that the sale of its operating businesses to Connect Airways will be completed by Feb. 22. Under that deal, Connect Airways will acquire Flybe’s operating subsidiaries without a shareholder vote. This will be followed by the acquisition of Flybe’s holding company, which does require shareholder approval.

    By: Kerry Reals
    NS Comment: Mesa Air Group are late arrivals. Probably best to keep the deal close to home.
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    Default Re: Flybe Acquired by Virgin-led Consortium

    Sky News; Friday 22 February 2019
    Flybe completes cut-price sale to Virgin after turbulent ride

    The takeover of the troubled airline signals the end of a saga that has gripped the City, amid shareholder anger and a rival move.

    Flybe has completed its controversial sale to a consortium led by Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Atlantic, which will net just 1p a share.

    The takeover of the troubled regional airline came after the operator snubbed a rival rescue proposal from investors.

    Flybe said it did not believe the "highly conditional" plan, backed by a consortium including Arizona-based Mesa Air, could be carried out in a timeframe to allow it to continue to trade.

    It was offering significantly more per share than the Connect Airways consortium, which consists of Virgin Atlantic, Stobart Group and investment firm Cyrus Capital.

    But Flybe said it saw the existing Connect offer as the "only viable option available to the company which provides the security that the business needs to continue to trade successfully"
    .
    Read more at: https://news.sky.com/story/flybe-com...-ride-11644517

    NS Comment: Guess Flybe called it right. Onwards and upwards..
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