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Clifford Chance advises on Cathay Pacific's recapitalisation plan

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10 June 2020

Clifford Chance advises on Cathay Pacific's recapitalisation plan

Leading international law firm Clifford Chance is advising as one of the principal counsels across all three investment tranches on a proposed US$5 billion recapitalisation plan announced by Cathay Pacific Airways Limited. The recapitalisation plan involves a proposed US$2.5 billion issue of preference shares with detachable warrants; a proposed US$1.5 billion rights issue; and a proposed US$1 billion bridge loan facility.

The recapitalisation plan is aimed to provide liquidity and to strengthen the capital of Cathay Pacific in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the challenges which the airline industry is facing due to the widespread travel restrictions imposed by many countries.

The proposed preference share issue with warrants, and the proposed rights issue will require the approval of the shareholders of Cathay Pacific. Swire Pacific Limited, Air China Limited and Qatar Airways Group Q.C.S.C., being the three largest shareholders of Cathay Pacific, have given irrevocable undertakings to vote in favour of the recapitalisation plan (where not restricted by the Listing Rules) and to subscribe for their pro-rata share of the rights issue.

Aviation 2020 Limited will be the provider of the bridge loan facility, and, upon completion of the rights issue, Aviation 2020 Limited will subscribe in full for the preference shares. Aviation 2020 Limited is wholly-owned by the Financial Secretary Incorporated as established under the Financial Secretary Incorporation Ordinance.

The Clifford Chance team is led by partners Amy Lo (Corporate/Public Companies), Anthony Wang (Finance), Matt Fairclough (Debt Capital Markets) and Virginia Lee (Corporate/Public Companies). They are supported by partner Paul Greenwell (Asset Finance), counsel Liao Yufei (Corporate/Public Companies), associates Jeffery Hung (Debt Capital Markets), Chit Kwong (Finance), Jeff Wong (Corporate/Public Companies), and Hetty Lam (Asset Finance).

Amy said, "The transaction showcases Clifford Chance's capability in high-value complex recapitalisations, bringing together its market leading teams to advise across the three investment tranches from the public companies, equity and debt capital markets, finance and asset finance fields."

高伟绅参与并就国泰航空50亿美元的资本重组计划提供法律服务

国际领先律师事务所高伟绅作为主要法律顾问之一参与并就涉及国泰航空于2020年6月9日宣布的50亿美元资本重组计划提供法律服务。本次资本重组计划涉及三个部分,包括 25亿美元的优先股及可分离认股权证的发行,15亿美元的配股以及10亿美元过桥贷款。

本次资本重组计划旨在为国泰航空提供流动性,增强国泰航空的资本实力,并应对新冠肺炎疫情蔓延和多国实施的旅行限制令给航空业带来的挑战。

罗秀娴律师表示:“高伟绅为本项目配备了市场顶尖的律师团队,从上市公司、股权和债权资本市场以及金融和资产融资的角度,为此次资本重组计划的三个组成部分提供法律服务。这也展现了高伟绅在处理复杂高价值资本重组交易中的杰出业务能力。”

国泰航空的优先股及可分离认股权证的发行及拟议配股需取得国泰航空的股东批准。国泰航空的三大股东 – 太古股份有限公司、中国国际航空股份有限公司及卡塔尔航空集团已做出不可撤销承诺投票赞成本次资产重组计划(前提是该计划不受《上市规则》的限制),并按照各自持股比例认购配股。

Aviation 2020 Limited将提供过桥贷款,并在配股完成后全额认购优先股。Aviation 2020 Limited由财政司司长法团全资拥有,后者是根据香港《财政司司长法团条例》成立的法团。

高伟绅项目团队由合伙人罗秀娴律师(公司事务/上市公司业务组)、王文伟律师(金融业务组)、Matt Fairclough 律师(债务资本市场业务组)以及李婉雯律师(公司/上市公司业务组)牵头负责。高伟绅合伙人Paul Greenwell (资产融资业务组)、资深顾问律师廖宇飞(公司事务/上市公司业务组)、律师孔靖(债务资本市场业务组)、律师邝哲(金融业务组)、律师王启尧(公司事务/上市公司业务组)和律师林殷贤(资产融资业务组)也为本项目提供支持。