Gateway consortium wins privatization of TAP – Portugal

12 June 2015

The Gateway consortium was selected by the Portuguese government to acquire 61 percent of Portuguese airline TAP – Portugal, the Deputy Minister and Regional Development said Thursday in Lisbon.

Poiares Maduro said, after a cabinet meeting, that the strengthening of economic and financial capacity, the strategic project and increasing the vale of TAP shares were decisive in selecting the consortium rather than competing candidate German Efromovich, owner of airline Avianca and the Synergy group.

The consortium made up of Portuguese businessman Humberto Pedrosa and American David Neeleman, owners of the Barraqueiro transport group and airlines Blue and JetBlue will have to pay immediately 10 million euros to state shareholding company Parpública for the shares representing 61 percent of the TAP group.

Parpública may raise a total of 140 million euros, with the sale of the 34 percent stake still held by the Portuguese State.

The put option on the 34 percent stake in TAP is valid for two years, but a stock exchange listing may take up to four years after closing the sale of 66 percent of the airline, including 5 percent set aside for staff.

The winning bid submitted a financial offer of 354 million euros in capital to be applied in TAP, and the offer may reach 488 million euros, depending on the company’s performance in 2015, said the State Treasury Secretary, Isabel Castelo Branco.

The sale contract is expected to be signed in the next month, and the respective drafts have already been analysed at a cabinet meeting. (macauhub/PT/BR)