Airbus Agrees to Sell its Remaining Dassault Aviation Stakeby
European aircraft maker is disposing of a 23.6% stake
Stake will be exited through share sale, exchangeable bond
Airbus, which owns 23.6 percent of Dassault Aviation, is selling approximately 830,000 of the company’s shares in an accelerated block sale to institutional investors, representing about 9 percent of the capital, the company said in a statement Thursday. Dassault Aviation will purchase shares equal to about 5.5 percent through its share buyback program, the statement said.
The shares are being offered for 920 euros to 950 euros each, a discount to their market price. Orders below 950 euros may not get any stock, according to terms sent to investors. The books will close at 8 p.m. London time Thursday. Dassault Aviation shares rose 0.3 percent to 970 euros in Paris trading, giving Airbus’s entire stake a market value of 2.1 billion euros ($2.4 billion).
Airbus is also issuing a 1 billion-euro zero-coupon bond. The bond is due 2021 and exchangeable into Dassault shares at a premium of 35 percent to 40 percent above the equity placement price. Airbus will have exited its entire holding once the share sale has completed and the bonds have been exchanged in full.
Airbus began cutting its stake of about 46 percent in family-controlled Dassault in 2014, reducing the holding it inherited more than a decade ago. Airbus had never reaped synergies by working with Dassault, which makes Rafale warplanes and Falcon business jets, keeping the shares only as a financial investment.
Bank of America Corp., BNP Paribas SA, Deutsche Bank AG, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and JP Morgan Chase & Co. are managing the sale. Rothschild & Co. is acting as Airbus’s financial adviser on the deal.