For­mer Ryanair CFO ex­pected to raise $500m through IPO and debt for new leas­ing firm

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Business & Appointments - - FRONT PAGE - Michael Cog­ley

A NEW air­craft-leas­ing fund that will be floated on the Lon­don Stock Ex­change this month by a for­mer Ryanair chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cer will be val­ued at around $250m (€220.8m).

Howard Mil­lar has teamed up with his fel­low ex-stell­wa­gen ex­ec­u­tives Ed Cough­lan and Ed Han­som to es­tab­lish the Sir­ius Air­craft Leas­ing Fund, which will pre­dom­i­nantly in­vest in used sin­gle-aisle air­craft.

A to­tal of 250 mil­lion or­di­nary shares, val­ued at $1 each, will be listed dur­ing its ini­tial pub­lic of­fer­ing.

The Guernsey-based com­pany has sought to raise enough work­ing cap­i­tal for “at least the next 12 months”, ac­cord­ing to its prospec­tus.

The leas­ing firm has tar­geted a max­i­mum is­su­ing of 300 mil­lion shares. The fund will be en­tirely owned by share­hold­ers. Sir­ius is ex­pected to raise a fur­ther $250m in debt, giv­ing it buy­ing power of up to $500m to in­vest in its fleet.

Sir­ius has tar­geted an an­nu­alised div­i­dend yield of 6pc for in­vestors within the first year, ris­ing to a tar­get of 8pc in each fi­nan­cial year there­after. The plac­ing pro­gramme for shares will open on Wed­nes­day, Novem­ber 21. Sir­ius is be­ing ad­vised by Liberum Cap­i­tal and Davy.

It is un­der­stood there are a num­ber of UKbased pen­sion funds that have reg­is­tered an in­ter­est in in­vest­ing in the com­pany when it floats.

In the prospec­tus, Sir­ius iden­ti­fied its typ­i­cal in­vestor as “in­sti­tu­tional and pro­fes­sion­ally ad­vised”. Sir­ius iden­ti­fied ter­ror­ist at­tacks, civil un­rest, and a neg­a­tive change in the eco­nomic con­di­tions in Asia and emerg­ing mar­kets as sig­nif­i­cant threats to its busi­ness model.

The com­pany will be based in Guernsey, just off the coast of France, but its in­vest­ment ad­viser will be based in Dublin.

Un­der cur­rent tax law there is no li­a­bil­ity to cap­i­tal gains tax, wealth tax, cap­i­tal trans­fer tax or es­tate or in­her­i­tance tax on the is­sue, trans­fer or re­al­i­sa­tion of shares.

No ref­er­ence was made in the 181-page doc­u­ment to out­stand­ing lit­i­ga­tion from avi­a­tion leas­ing com­pany Stell­wa­gen.

The Us-ir­ish com­pany has al­leged the trio used com­pany se­crets to es­tab­lish an­other avi­a­tion-leas­ing com­pany. That claim is de­nied by all three men.

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