Seventeen parties have submitted expressions of interest (EOI) regarding the sale of South African Express (XZ, Johannesburg O.R. Tambo) which is currently in provisional liquidation.

In June, the bankrupt carrier's joint provisional liquidators (JPL), Tshwane Trust, called for EOIs covering either the sale of the business in its entirety as a going concern, investment as an equity partner, or a buyer for part or all of the airline's assets.

In addition to four CRJ200ERs, General Electric CF34-3B1 powerplants, spare parts, rotables, tools, and support equipment, the asset group includes SA Express's various licences (operator's licence, AOC, AMO, ATNS, ICASA, etc.).

According to a leaked report seen by SA Tourism Update, Liquidity Services/GoIndustry DoveBid, the asset disposal company appointed by Tshwane Trust, compiled the following dossier on the bids that had been submitted:

  • Uprise Africa, a South African equity crowd-funding platform, has partnered trade unions NUMSA and SACCA and plans to purchase SA Express as a going concern by investing ZAR75 million rand (USD4.25 million) in cash plus ZAR175m (USD9.93 million) in working capital. A due diligence is to be done by Lufthansa Consulting;
  • Gulf Development Council, a Emirati/South African consortium, proposes to acquire SA Express for ZAR10 million (USD567,160), with all creditors compromised. It also proposed to re-employ all employees in phases, starting with 250 by November 1;
  • Setna iO, a US-based aftermarket aircraft parts supplier, proposes to purchase all or part of SA Express's assets;
  • SIMGROUP, a South African/Malawian group, proposes to purchase SA Express's entire business through South African private equity firm, Weaver Capital Management. The firm had originally planned to use NBS Bank in Malawi. If successful, SIMGROUP also wants to enter into a new airline agreement with the South African government;
  • Kinfedi/Trident, part of South Africa's Poseidon Consortium, proposes to acquire the SA Express business in its entirety but did not specify a sum;
  • Autogas SA/Aviation Connection plans to partner US and Emirati interests to acquire SA Express as a complete business;
  • Woodford Vehicle Rental, a South African car hire firm, is interested in SA Express as a whole but gave no further details;
  • BDS Airways, a South African start-up carrier, is interested in SA Express including all assets, facilities, brand and brand equity, including all office and field equipment;
  • Tiger Africa, a South African firm, plans to purchase all or part of SA Express's assets;
  • Matekane Group, a Lesotho-based firm whose defunct Maluti Sky (7D, Maseru) is a major SA Express creditor and claimant, is interested in two aircraft engines, spare parts, and tools;
  • Monocoque Diversified Interests, a Texas-based aviation investment firm, proposes to pay USD551,000 for all aircraft and engines;
  • Q400 Leasing (RMB) has expressed interest in acquiring SA Express's DHC-8-Q400-related tooling and parts;
  • Fly Modern Ark (Johannesburg O.R. Tambo), a South African start-up that specialises in aircraft leasing and sales, proposes to pay ZAR10 million (USD567,160) for all of SA Express's aircraft and engines; or ZAR10 million for all of its current operating and AMO licenses; ZAR100 million (USD5.67 million) for all shares, all assets, and licenses, but excluding all creditor liabilities and employees;
  • Sol Air (Zimbabwe) (ZS, Harare Int'l), a Zimbabwean/South African consortium, is interested in acquiring SA Express's assets, shares, and claims using Chinese and Singaporean funding connections;
  • Avmax Holdings, a Canadian aviation consortium, submitted two proposals for SA Express's assets and aircraft parts;
  • Imbani Holdings, a South African firm, has proposed paying ZAR20 million (USD1.13 million) for SA Express's entire issued share capital as well as its valid licenses, route authorities, and other select assets.

A due diligence of the offers is being carried out and will end on September 7. Tshwane Trust will only accept bids if they are signed and accompanied by a deposit payment of 25% of the purchase price as indicated in the agreement. These offers will be subject to a seven-day confirmation period.

Editorial Comment: Adjusts SIMGROUP's proposal as per company guidance. - 16.08.2020 - 07:07 UTC