US based BlackRock shows interest in Srilankan airlines: Minister

Sep 28, 2016 (LBO) – Two global investment managers, US based BlackRock and TPG Capital, have shown interest in crisis-hit SriLankan Airlines which is looking for a partner, a minister said.

“BlackRock and TPG Capital, two global investment management firms are among the interested parties in addition to some Chinese airlines,” Malik Samarawickrama, minister of International Trade and Development Strategies said.

“We (government) will have to takeover the debt only and give as no one will take it with it.”

BlackRock, is a investment management corporation based in New York City while TPG Capital is one of the largest private equity investment firms globally, focused on leveraged buyouts, growth capital and leveraged recapitalization investments in distressed companies and turnaround situations.

According to previous media reports four airlines – Turkish Airlines, Hainan – China’s largest privately-owned air transport firm, Japan’s ANA and Indonesia’s Garuda Airlines have also shown interest.

So far there are eight EOIs confirmed for the national carrier with two more being finalized.

SriLankan was given 100 million dollar bailouts from the Treasury during the previous administration to keep afloat. In 2015 the airline had losses of about 16 billion rupees, down from about 30 billion in 2014.