Posts: 834
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2000 10:28 am

Big Financial Problems For AN/NZ

Tue May 15, 2001 12:25 pm

as reported in Today's "Age" and "SMH". It looks like SQ is very reluctant to be the saviour for AN/NZ. You have to wonder for how long can NZ control 100% of AN.


Air NZ in plea for big bailout

Tuesday 15 May 2001

Air New Zealand and Ansett are seeking an unprecedented $NZ700 million ($A567 million)
bailout from the New Zealand Government to revamp their aircraft fleet, as funding options
with 25 per cent equity partner Singapore Airlines dry up.

Singapore Airlines, apparently frustrated at board level with Air NZ and stymied by the New
Zealand Government's refusal to lift ownership caps, walked away from Air New
Zealand/Ansett's worsening fleet problems last month.

And fleet refurbishment plans
have been put back again.
Analysts in Wellington
claimed yesterday that an Air
NZ proposal relating to
financing the estimated $A5
billion fleet replacement
program, due to be presented
to the airline's board in July,
had been put back until
August or September.

That delay has prompted Air
NZ/Ansett president Gary
Toomey to cancel a trip to
Hong Kong to attend Credit
Lyonnais' investor
conference, where he was
expected to present Air New
Zealand's case for funding.

Global equity analysts
Salomon Smith Barney has
been engaged to examine
funding options and advise the airline.

But the problems with the group were deeper, said analysts in Singapore, who claimed that
the relationship between Singapore Airlines' chief executive Cheong Choong Kong and Air
New Zealand's Sir Selwyn Cushing was strained at best.

The Singapore Airline's board is still miffed that its attempts in 1999 to buy directly into
Ansett were thwarted by Air NZ, led by Sir Selwyn.

"The relationship has never recovered from that spat. Dr Cheong lost face over that deal and
he is not going to bail Sir Selwyn out," said one analyst. "Our understanding is that
Singapore Airlines wants to see Sir Selwyn retire from the board of Air New Zealand."

The New Zealand Government is making it extremely difficult for Singapore Airlines to help
out by capping its ownership level at 25 per cent.

Compounding that problem, the airline groups' largest shareholder, Brierley Investments Ltd,
with 30 per cent, would be struggling to raise significant capital, said analysts in Singapore.

"Besides, BIL wants to exit the airline," said one analyst.

BIL chief executive Greg Terry has confirmed that desire to exit Air NZ but said that the exit
would be made at the appropriate time and at the right price - at least double the current price
of $NZ1.08.

Under the proposed bail-out, Air NZ wants the government to inject capital through issuing
crown capital notes. The amount would be $NZ350 million in each of the next two years.

The government has confirmed Air NZ had requested a meeting.



RE: Big Financial Problems For AN/NZ

Tue May 15, 2001 2:28 pm

What about Ansetts war chest of 6-700million, is that going to be used to help buy new a/c ? If Air NZ/AN are so hard up why be so stupid and put in a offer for impulse ?
Air Taiwan
Posts: 1498
Joined: Fri Dec 03, 1999 3:06 pm

RE: Big Financial Problems For AN/NZ

Tue May 15, 2001 2:58 pm

Air New Zealand... wake up...

I've heard people say that Aussies are a little bit too patrotic at times... now look at Kiwis!!!

Posts: 2310
Joined: Tue Jan 09, 2001 12:03 pm

RE: Big Financial Problems For AN/NZ

Tue May 15, 2001 5:38 pm

Well.. Air NZ has already made most major decisions in regards to it's fleet replacement program.
ALL domestic 737s are being fitted with inflight entertainment including live news bulletins.
16 new Beech 1900D aircraft have been purchased and will be arriving at a rate of one every five weeks starting in September, retiring the Bandeirantes and Metroliners.
The Saab 340 aircraft will be replaced in about mid2002 with a different make of aircraft entirely (40 seater), and we've all heard about Air NZ's big upcoming fleet order. Unfortunately I can't say anything more, but Air NZ's load factors are growing all the time, and the future is looking good. As an employee, I'm confident Air NZ will weather the recent storms.

PS - Sir Selwyn Cushing is retiring as head of Air NZ soon anyway, which I'm sure Dr. Cheong has known for some time.
Posts: 516
Joined: Sun Jun 25, 2000 9:48 am

RE: Big Financial Problems For AN/NZ

Wed May 16, 2001 8:13 am

To understand why ANZ is going to the Government you need to appreciate the "golden share"" that the NZ govt has in the airline. This effectively stops the sale of the airline to foreign interests, and to preserve the traffic rights and alliances that stem from it.

I think what the ANZ board have done here is go to the "shareholders" and ask for a further capital injection to square up the balance sheet. In doing so, the "golden share" takes on a significant value, particularly if it in fact impedes the funding drive. Well the NZ Govt is no different to any other shareholder - if you want a piece of the action, cough up the dough.

Will be very interesting to see the response.

RE: Big Financial Problems For AN/NZ

Wed May 16, 2001 12:29 pm

All they could blame is: 'Why can't I be as rich as SQ?'

There is one Cantonese proverb who said: ' Don't think about big hat if you don't have the head big enough for it.'

Apparently, that's what's hapended to ANZ

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