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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs    30 July 2012

Indonesia's Batavia Air to be acquired by Air Asia


AirAsia Bhd unit AirAsia Investment Ltd and its partner, PT Fersindo Nusaperkasa, will acquire PT Metro Batavia, the company which operates the Indonesian Batavia Air and Aero Flyer Institute, an aviation training school.

The acquisition, which is subject to regulatory approvals in Indonesia and is expected to complete by the second quarter of 2013, will see AirAsia holding a 49 per cent stake in Metro Batavia and Fersindo Nusaperkasa holding the 51 per cent majority stakes.

AirAsia said it would fund the acquisition with US$80 million (253 million ringgit) in cash.

"The acquisition of 100 per cent interest in Metro Batavia by AirAsia and Fersindo will be carried out in two stages, through acquisition of a majority 76.95 per cent stake and subsequently followed by the remaining 23.05 per cent held by its existing shareholders. Correspondingly, the total purchasing consideration for 100 per cent interest in Aero Flyer Institute is $1 million (about 3.2 million ringgit),” AirAsia said in a press statement.
"We are impressed with Batavia Air's achievements over the past 10 years. We are excited with the potential synergies this acquisition will bring to the AirAsia group and see this as a natural extension of the success we have achieved with PT Indonesia AirAsia. Indonesian air travellers can all look forward to even more affordable fares soon," group Chief Executive Officer Tony Fernandes said.

AirAsia said the Batavia Air acquisition provided greater domestic connectivity and an extensive feeder network into its Indonesian existing hubs in Jakarta, Bandung, Denpasar, Medan and Surabaya.

“Following the acquisition the number of distribution channels in Indonesia will increase 10-fold to over 5,000 authorised agents and more than 70 sales outlets. With this enlarged agency footprint AirAsia will be able to reach even more customers while complementing our Internet-based sales,” it said.

Batavia Air was founded in 2002 and operates a fleet of 33 aircraft.

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It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

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