Nigeria plans to launch an Initial Public Offering (IPO) to raise capital for its proposed National carrier, Nigeria Air, according to the Aviation minister, Hadi Sirka.
At a briefing in Abuja, Sirika disclosed plans by the government to publish public notice on Request for Proposals to investors interested in owning shares in the proposed national carrier.
He said Nigeria Air would be listed on the Nigerian Exchange Limited after the IPO, noting that ordinarily Nigerians would have the opportunity to invest in the airline, slated to commence operation in April 2022.
He said that the proposed national carrier will commence operations with three leased aircraft in the first instance.
Sirka had announced on Wednesday that the government plans to relaunch the national carrier with 46 percent stake for Nigerian investors while the government will retain five percent holding in the company and 49 percent reserved for strategic foreign equity partners.
The minister at the briefing on Thursday said the portion of the share reserves for local investors “will be purchased exactly the way you buy shares in every company.
“This is because Nigeria Air is a limited liability company for now, registered under the law of the land and structured in a PPP (public private partnership) manner.
“So you purchase it the same way you purchase shares in any company and later it is our hope that it will be listed and go through IPO (Initial Public Offering) and so on,” Sirika said.
The minister explained that the airline would start operations with three wet-leased aircraft, as it would take about three to five years to take delivery of an aircraft that was ordered for.
“They will start with wet-leased aircraft and that’s how 90 percent of airlines in the world would have started. So they will start with a wet-lease of three aircraft and then continue to expand, place orders and then get deliveries,” he stated.