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IAG boss rules out rights issue - report

By Abigail Townsend

Date: Monday 20 Sep 2021

IAG boss rules out rights issue - report

(Sharecast News) - International Consolidated Airlines Group, the owner of British Airways, has ruled out asking shareholders for fresh funds.
Chief executive Luis Gallego told The Sunday Times that a rights issue was not currently on the table, noting: "We do not see the necessity to do a rights issue and are not considering it."

Instead, the Anglo-Spanish group - which has net debt of around €11bn - is planning worst-case Covid scenarios and is discussing "different options" with banks as part of that. Gallego also pointed to IAG's strong liquidity, of €10.2bn. "We have revolving credit facilities, we are analysing other ways of financing the group so we have alternatives before we [consider] another rights issue," he told the newspaper.

Earlier this month, budget carrier EasyJet. announced a £1.2bn rights issue, prompting speculation that IAG would follow suit. Last year, EasyJet raised £419m through investors with IAG launching a £2.5bn rights issue shortly afterwards.

Speculation has also been mounting that IAG could buy or merge with easyJet. Asked by The Sunday Times if he had discussed a deal with the airline, Gallego stressed that repaying debt was IAG's main priority as it emerged from the pandemic, but noted: "We talk to all airlines that can be interesting to us."

As at 1130 BST on Monday, shares in IAG were ahead 1% in London at 151.9p.

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