Air Belgium soon married to a Chinese giant? The Chinese group has already carried out two test flights with planes from the Belgian company.
The Hongyuan group wants to take up to 49% of the capital of the Belgian airline. The deal is expected to close on February 20. A plane in the colors of the two companies was already present this week on the tarmac at Zaventem airport.
The information had leaked a few days ago, without confirmation from the main interested parties: the Chinese logistics giant Hongyuan would consider taking up to 49% of the capital of the Belgian airline Air Belgium.
“The Chinese group Hongyuan plans to take up to 49% of the capital of the Belgian airline Air Belgium within the framework of a capital increase operation, thus leaving 51% in the hands of the current shareholders”, confirms the minister.
This transaction, even if it is not yet fully completed due to the Chinese New Year, has already received the approval of the European aeronautical authorities, a sine qua non condition for its completion.
Honghuan Group, based in Beijing, therefore plans to take over the 8% of Aviation Investment Holding, based in Hong Kong, but also part of the block of Belgian shareholders who will also find themselves diluted during a capital increase of the company. The amount of the investment amounts to 16 million euros. It should be finalized by the end of February.
The current Belgian shareholders (SRIW, Sogepa, SFPI, 3T Management and Sabena Aerospace) would keep the 51% which gives them the majority and guarantees Air Belgium its status as a European carrier.