Qantas announced that it has reached an agreement to fully-acquire Alliance Aviation Services Ltd, an Australian-based operator catering to the mining and resource sector.
In February 2019, the Australian flag carrier bought 20% of Alliance. Competition consumer watchdog Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) closely investigated that minority holding over the course of three years and made no findings that it lessened competition.
On May 5, 2022, Qantas said that it would buy the remaining 80% stake of Alliance Aviation (AQZ) through an arrangement scheme where Alliance shareholders would receive Qantas shares worth $3.43 (AU 4.75) for each Alliance share they hold, representing a 32% premium to Alliance’s volume weighted average price for the past three months.
Qantas said that it would then “issue new shares valued at approximately $443 million (AU 614 million) in a transaction that is expected to be earnings per share accretive for Qantas shareholders, before synergies”.
Qantas said that the acquisition would allow them to “better serve the growing resources sector”, as Alliance Aviation (AQZ), which owns a fleet of 70 small aircraft (with a capacity of up to 100 per plane) and operates fly-in fly-out (FIFO) air charter services for the Australian mining industry.
“The resources sector continues to grow and any new tender for airline services will be very competitive. It makes a lot of sense for us to combine with Alliance to improve the services we can offer, which is a positive for both airlines as well as the traveling public,” Qantas CEO Alan Joyce said in a statement.
Joyce added: “We’ve opened up several new passenger routes using up to 18 of Alliance’s E190s, so bringing all 33 of these aircraft, plus their crews, into the Qantas Group would really expand what we could achieve.”
Qantas said that it will continue to update the market on expected completion timing as the competition clearance and Alliance shareholder vote processes progress.