Public Enterprises Dept says it’s close to finalising SAA’s rescue plan

The DPE said all conditions for the business plan were met and implemented, and it was now in the final stages to complete the process.

FILE: Parked SAA planes. Picture: EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) on Wednesday said that it was close to finalising the business rescue plan for South African Airways (SAA), but it was vague on where it would get over R10 billion to get the restructuring off the ground.

The DPE said that all conditions for the business plan were met and implemented and it was now in the final stages of completing the process.

SAA has been in a protracted business rescue process for over six months, which was concluded in July.

The one issue that the department failed to address was how far it was in securing the over R10 billion to get the plan in motion. The money is crucial to government’s plans in making their restructured airline a reality.

DPE spokesperson Sam Mkokeli said that they would appoint a transaction adviser.

“The DPE has identified a transaction advisor whose mandate is to assist the department in transaction planning, feasibility analysis, procurement and implementation of transactions and raising funds and investments for the new airline. The advisers are also expected to assess unsolicited expressions of interests from private sector funders, private equity investors and partners for a future restructured SAA,” Mkokeli said in a statement on Wednesday.

“The DPE welcomes the attraction of a mix of local and international investor groups to provide the new airline with technical, financial, and operational expertise to ensure significant South African ownership whilst diversifying the investor base.”

Currently, the department said that it was busy with four phases to complete the process which included finalising the retrenchments, the appointment of non-executive directors, selection of transaction advisers, and the formation of a customer-centric airline.

“The DPE believes that the restructuring contained in the business rescue plan for SAA is fundamental and will create a solid base for the emergence of a competitive, viable, and sustainable national airline for the Republic of South Africa,” Mkokeli said.

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