GPA Group, the Irish aircraft-leasing outfit, is still suffering from the failure of its $1 billion share offering last June. On Sept. 16, GPA announced that it had arranged with its suppliers to cut its airplane-purchase agreements in half. The bottom line: GPA is now on the hook to buy about $7 billion worth of planes by the year 2000, down from $12 billion before the new agreement.
The deal with the plane makers also frees up GPA capital by reducing the amount of money GPA must deposit for each plane it contracts to buy. In some cases, the due date for the deposit has also been moved back. The easier terms free up about $650 million in much-needed additional funds for GPA, which has been scrambling for new sources of cash ever since it pulled its share offering off the market.