Singapore Airlines raises SGD2B from airplane sale-and-leaseback deals

SINGAPORE (CNA) – Singapore Airlines Ltd said yesterday it had raised about SGD2 billion through sale-and-leaseback deals for 11 of its planes to help bolster liquidity as it grapples with the pandemic-related plunge in travel.

The airline said it would continue to explore other ways to raise liquidity after reaching deals with four parties over seven Airbus SE A350-900s and four Boeing Co 787-10s.

Rivals such as Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd and Qantas Airways Ltd have done similar deals during the pandemic. “The additional liquidity from these sale-and-leaseback transactions reinforces our ability to navigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic from a position of strength,” Singapore Airlines Chief Executive Goh Choon Phong said in a statement.

Singapore Airlines said it had access to more than SGD2.1 billion of undrawn credit lines and an option to raise up to SGD6.2 billion in convertible bonds before its annual meeting in July 2021.

The airline lacks a domestic market and has been hit hard by the virtual halt to international passenger travel because of border controls and quarantine measures.

A Singapore Airlines airplane. PHOTO: CNA