China’s debt-laden conglomerate HNA Group said it is postponing a planned share sale in its aircraft ground-handling company, Swissport Group, roughly two weeks after abandoning a similar plan for its Swiss airline caters Gategroup holding AG, the South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported.
Not enough cash offered for Gategroup
The SCMP report said that Gategroup, which was set to raise as much as 1.1 billion francs (US$ 1.2 billion), cancelled that sale 24 hours before trading was scheduled to start because it didn’t get the money it was seeking.
Separately, HNA said it signed a preliminary agreement with Temasek Holdings, Singapore’s state-owned investment firm, to cooperate in areas including aviation, logistics and airport infrastructure. Temasek sold its stake in Swiss duty-free store operator Dufry AG to HNA about a year ago.
Hainan Airlines looks at buying HNA assets
In a related development, the SCMP reported that HNA’s subsidiary, Hainan Airlines, is mulling the purchase of major hotel and aviation assets from its parent, and independent third parties, including several domestic airlines and an unnamed overseas hotel operator.
The subsidiary will use a combination of cash and funds raised through the issuance of new shares to finance the asset purchases. Meanwhile, Hainan Airlines also announced it will purchase Chongqing-based West Air, Air Guilin Company and HNA Hospitality Group. It will also purchase Hainan Sky Plumage Flight Training, HNA Technic, and SR Technics from its parent or independent third parties.
HNA shares have been suspended from trading on the Shanghai bourse since January 10 citing major asset restructuring plans, but has said that it expects to see trading resume no later than June 9, after requesting an extension from an earlier trade resumption deadline on April, 10, the SCMP report said.
Nol van Fenema