Lebanon’s Central Bank Governor, Riad Salameh, stated the country plans to raise at least USD250 million from the sale of a stake in Middle East Airlines in 2010 (Bloomberg, 21-Jan-2010). At least a 25% stake in the carrier will be available in the IPO on the Beirut Stock Exchange, although no investor will be allowed to hold more than 1%, to guarantee wide ownership of the shares. A prospectus will be distributed in 1H2009. MEA, which reported a USD100 million profit in 2009, serves 28 destinations with a fleet of 13 A330 and A320 aircraft. Two additional aircraft will join the fleet in May-2010.
Lebanon Government: “Middle East Airlines is making money and we should have more involvement from the private sector. This will also need political backing and from my discussions there is,” Riad Salameh, Central Bank Governor. Source: Bloomberg, 21-Jan-2010.