Japan and Bahrain firms 'buy stakes in AirAsia X'

Business Materials 14 October 2007 09:45

Malaysian long-haul budget carrier AirAsia X will sell stakes of 10 per cent each to Japan's Orix Group and Bahrain's Perigon Capital for a total of $75 million, a local newspaper reported yesterday.

The deal, which values the airline at $375 million, aimed to raise funds for its fleet expansion, the Star newspaper said, quoting unidentified sources.

"The funds raised through this stake sale will be enough to see the airline through the next two to three years and it will meet its funding needs to purchase the new aircraft," it quoted one source.

Company officials were not available for comment.

The airline, which counts British billionaire Richard Branson as a shareholder, is targeting Britain, China and Australia as key trunk routes to and from southeast Asia.

Malaysia's AirAsia owns a 20 per cent stake in AirAsia X. ( Reuters )