Air France-KLM launched (24-May-2022) a capital increase with preferential subscription rights to existing shareholders, to raise EUR2.256 billion through the issuance of 1928 million new shares. The measures aim to strengthen the group's balance sheet and accelerate its repayment of French state aid. Key details include:
- Around EUR1.7 billion to be allocated to the repayment of the COVID-19 recapitalisation aid, granted by the French State. The remainder will be used to reduce the group's debt;
- The group confirmed its objective to reduce its net debt to EBITDA ratio, to reach between 2.0x and 2.5x by 2023;
- The French State, holding a stake of 28.6%, plans to participate in the rights issue to keep its shareholding unchanged;
- The Dutch State plans to maintain its 9.3% stake, provided it receives the necessary approvals from the Dutch Parliament in time;
- CMA CGM will become a new reference shareholder and exclusive strategic partner for the cargo business. CMA CGM will invest up to EUR400 million to acquire a stake of up to 9%. China Eastern Airlines (9.6%) and Delta Air Lines (5.8%) will participate on a cash neutral basis through the sale of part of their rights to CMA CGM, representing EUR110.7 million;
- The rights issue will occur between 27-May-2022 and 09-Jun-2022 at EUR1.17 per share, or three shares per existing share.
Air France-KLM CEO Benjamin Smith stated as recovery continues the group wants "to be in a position to seize any opportunity in a changing aviation sector and to be able to accelerate our environmental commitments". [more - original PR] [more - original PR - KLM]