ASL raises $110m to support expansion

ASL Aviation, a company rumoured to be interested in the sale of TNT’s freighter fleet, has completed a funding agreement worth $110m to be used for “ongoing growth and expansion”.
BNP Paribas coordinated the transaction and through its Paris & Brussels offices is providing $60m and the Birmingham, UK office of Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking is providing $50m.
Dublin-headquartered ASL Group chief financial officer Mark O’Kelly said: “Initially the funding will assist our platform for growth strategy and we look forward to building on this and on the already excellent relationships we have with both banks as the Group continues to consolidate and grow.”
BNP Paribas client director Fortis Guy Haesevoets added: “BNP Paribas has been supporting ASL Aviation for many years in the funding of their growth strategy with the financing of acquisitions in France and Switzerland.”
ASL Aviation has been linked with the purchase of TNT’s fleet of BAe146, B737, B757, B777 and B747 aircraft, which it could be forced to sell if its merger with FedEx is given the go-head by regulators.
In the past, ASL has declined to comment on the speculation. A spokesperson said the funding negotiations had been on-going for a while and said it was not linked with the TNT fleet.
ASL had agreed to buy the two TNT airlines for an undisclosed sum when United Parcel Service (UPS) looked certain to acquire the Dutch parcel operator in 2012, until the UPS takeover deal was scuppered by European Commission regulators in Brussels.
This year it has been continuing to develop its passenger activities following the December 2014 acquisition of the Farnair Group on the cargo side of the business.
FedEx this week said it had now gained regulatory approval for its takeover of TNT in 10 countries including the US, Australia, Chile, Colombia, Japan, New Zealand, Russia, Taiwan, Turkey and Ukraine.
Europe is expected to provide approval early next year, while it is “aggressively pursuing” clearance in the remaining seven countries, Brazil, China, Argentina, Israel, Korea, Namibia and South Africa.
The deal is expected to be completed in the first half of next year.

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