RECAPITALISATION - SHARES PRICING
Air New Zealand advises that following several days of discussions between the Crown’s advisers and the Board, the Company has been notified that the Crown is prepared to subscribe for new ordinary shares in the Company at a price of 27 cents per share.
The Board has received comprehensive professional independent advice in recent weeks concerning a fair and reasonable price for the issue of new shares in the current circumstances. The price notified by the Crown has been considered by the Board today in the context of the independent advice received. Pursuant to clause 1.4.2 of the 4 October Heads of Agreement, the Board has formed the opinion that the proposed subscription price and the terms and conditions of the issue of the new ordinary shares are fair and reasonable to the Company and all existing shareholders.
The issue price for the Convertible Preference Shares issued in satisfaction of the $300m loan will accordingly be 24 cents per share as provided by clause 1.2.1 of the Heads of Agreement. The additional $585 million of new capital at 27 cents per share will result in the Crown owning 82% of the voting shares of the Company. The recapitalisation remains subject to approval of the Company’s shareholders.
The Government has also advised the Company that it is prepared to commit a further $150 million of capital before 30 June 2003, in a form appropriate to the capital structure needs of the airline at the time it is required.
Air New Zealand’s Acting Chairman Dr Farmer QC welcomed the outcome of negotiations on these terms and said that the price represents an appropriate level for this major investment which will recapitalise the Company.