Australia Pacific Airports Melbourne Pty Ltd plans to sell AUD200 million (USD179 million) worth of six-year bonds (Bloomberg, 13-Aug-2010). Indicative pricing for the six-year fixed rate notes is "in the 190 area" according to Australian and New Zealand Banking Corp and Westpac Banking Corp, who will jointly lead and manage the transaction expected to price shortly. Melbourne Airport represents 97% of its total revenue and 98% of APAC’s total assets. Australia Pacific Airports has a AUD330 million (USD296 million) project underway to expand the airport's international terminal. The company reportedly has AUD250 million (USD224 million) of 10-year floating-rate bonds maturing in June 2011 that were sold with a guarantee from MBIA Insurance Corp.
Melbourne Airport to sell AUD200m of bonds
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The LCC initially added Melbourne to its network plan in 2015 after the Philippines and Australia forged an extended air services agreement. But Cebu Pacific subsequently decided to shelve plans to launch Melbourne, and has instead been using additional A330 capacity to expand in its domestic and regional international market.
Melbourne is now back on the agenda and is the next priority – leapfrogging Honolulu – for Cebu Pacific’s long haul operation. A new partnership with Melbourne-based Tigerair Australia is a key driver in making Manila-Melbourne a viable route, along with the anticipated rapid growth in Australian visitor numbers to the Philippines.
Virgin Australia realigns its airline partnership priorities on new long haul strategy: Part 1
There have recently been important shifts in Virgin Australia's partnership relations, as Air New Zealand withdraws its ownership and the roles of Singapore Airlines and Etihad evolve with HNA becoming a substantial shareholder. As a consequence, Virgin is restructuring its long haul network for the first time in over two years. Individual changes are not significant, but they help tie up loose ends in Virgin's strategy. Virgin and its US JV partner Delta have been static since United and Qantas-American Airlines greatly altered the Australia-US market profile, a route which constitutes most of Virgin's long haul network.
Virgin struggled to find a use for what was essentially leftover aircraft capacity that it allocated to Sydney-Abu Dhabi as part of a JV with Etihad. With a limited fleet, North America beckoning, and Etihad seemingly losing some lustre since a Virgin-Singapore Airlines partnership, Virgin is having to cut Sydney-Abu Dhabi to free up capacity to relaunch Melbourne-Los Angeles.
Virgin will still commit to its Etihad partnership by adding three weekly Perth-Abu Dhabi flights on the A330-200, which will finally be moved out of the domestic market and deployed long haul. Since the end of the West Australian mining boom, these well equipped aircraft are no longer needed on transcontinental domestic service. Virgin's fleet of five 777-300ERs now will exclusively be used on Los Angeles.