Middle East

Royal Jordanian closes an oversubscribed US$ 275 million loan facility

Tis Meyer / Planepics.org

The Royal Jordanian Airlines announced the successful closure of its US$ 275,000,000 dual conventional and Islamic secured syndicated facility.

The syndicate comprised of seven banks based in Jordan, UAE and Qatar; they are Mashreq Bank, Arab Bank plc,  Al Khalij Commercial Bank (Al Khaliji) Q.S.C, Dubai Islamic Bank, and The Commercial Bank/Qatar acting as Mandated Lead Arrangers, Arab Jordan Investment Bank as Lead Arranger and Bank al-Etihad as Arranger. Mashreq Bank acted as the sole book-runner for the loan.

The facility carries a tenor of 5 years and the proceeds of the facility will be primarily utilized to consolidate and refinance Royal Jordanian existing debt and further support the company’s on-going strategic growth and turnaround plans on the short- and medium-run.

Having received an overwhelming response from the market, the facility exceeded the initial target amount, exemplifying the synergies developing between the Middle East and Levant region.

Chairman of Royal Jordanian Board of Directors Suleiman Hafez said: “Royal Jordanian has successfully secured a hybrid structured debt instrument as part of the airline’s on-going strategic capital raising program, to support its intensive turnaround and growth plans to evolve into one of the leading airlines in the Levant and Middle Eastern region. This syndication reiterates the airline’s access to avail international liquidity, with the same success it has accomplished with Jordan based financial institutions.”

President/ CEO of Royal Jordanian Captain Suleiman Obeidat said: “We would like to show our gratitude to Mashreq and other participating banks for the successful closure of this deal, which will support the airline’s well-studied plans to carry out network expansion and fleet modernization, particularly that RJ will introduce more 787s to its fleet by the end of this year. Today five 787s are operating in the fleet since 2014.”

Walid Samhouri, Jordan Country Head at Arab Bank Plc commented:” Royal Jordanian has always been, and shall continue to be, a prime client for Arab Bank Group. Our involvement in this transaction as Mandate Lead Arranger reflects Arab Bank’s long standing strategy towards supporting our reputable corporate clients and providing them with a diverse range of financing solutions to meet their evolving business needs”.

Salman Gulzar, Head of Corporate Banking at Mashreq Qatar stated: “The successful closure of this transaction by Mashreq in these uncertain times demonstrates the trust and confidence we and our partner banks have in supporting reputable and strong Levant based corporates in the regional and international debt market. Jordan has always been a strategic market for Mashreq and we remain committed to working alongside our core relationship clients like Royal Jordanian to execute innovative financial solutions aimed at supporting their business plans and creating efficiency in their operations. We would like to thank RJ again for entrusting us with this critical mandate and are glad that together we have successfully executed this significant transaction.”

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