Sale of 61 pct of TAP-Air Portugal officially completed

13 November 2015

The contract for privatisation of 61 percent of TAP-Air Portugal was signed Thursday in Lisbon after the Cabinet approved the final draft of the carrier’s sales agreement, the Portuguese press reported.

The closure of the sale of the airline to the Gateway consortium, made up of Humberto Pedrosa and David Neeleman, took place with the presence of the CEO of TAP, Fernando Pinto and Secretary of State Isabel Castelo Branco.

A change to the air carrier’s capitalisation plan, also approved by the Cabinet, will allow the company to receive 150 million euros which is essential since, according to weekly newspaper Expresso, TAP would no longer have cash to pay salaries or fuel in November.

On 13 October, the National Civil Aviation Authority (ANAC) issued a positive report on the sale of TAP to the Gateway consortium, but asked for clarification of the ownership structure of the purchasing consortium, to see if it is controlled by Portugal’s Humberto Pedrosa, as required by European rules.

In the process of changing the consortium’s articles of association to meet the regulator’s requirements, the chief executive of TAP, Fernando Pinto, was appointed on 6 November to direct the consortium, a position he resigned from three days later. (macauhub/BR/PT)