|Adria Airways expected to complete privatisation after January 19, 2016|
The Slovenian government is likely to complete the sale of a 91.58% stake in Adria Airways after January 19, 2016, when a key vote is scheduled to take place concerning an eight million euro capital hike. Originally planned for November 23, the vote was delayed upon the request of the Slovenian Sovereign Holding (SSH), which is overseeing the airline's privatisation process, in order to give it more time to negotiate with potential investors. Media reports at the time suggested the company would be sold via the capital increase. This is seen as the likely scenario for the January vote as well. Documents concerning the extraordinary shareholders' meeting show Adria is seeking to sell new stock at a euro apiece, while existing shareholders will not have a pre-emptive right to buy the shares.
Investors will have only nine days to make the payment, meaning the privatisation process is likely to be completed by the end of January. The capital increase has been described as urgent, since Adria is believed to have generated losses this year and seen its revenue decline. The Slovenian government has said it is looking at ways to ease Adria's expenses without providing direct state aid, which it has been prohibited from doing under European Union legislation. Furthermore, the SSH is hoping to reach an agreement with Adria's creditors in order to reprogram or write off some of the airline's debts in an attempt to make it more appealing to potential investors.
In October, Adria Airways' CEO, Mark Anžur, said the government was entering exclusive negotiations with bidders. “They have already submitted their bids and very soon the government will shortlist one and enter final negotiations", Mr Anžur said, noting there are both financial and strategic partners in the running. “We are developing our own strategic plan, which can be supported or not by the new owner”, he added. Three German investment companies - Intro Aviation, 4K Invest and Callisto - are believed to be vying for the majority share in the Slovenian carrier. According to public broadcaster "RTV SLO", a fourth bid was initially made by Spanish airline Binter Canarias, however, the carrier has since withdrawn its offer.