The Virgin Australia shortlist has been narrowed down to two bidders.
Deloitte, the administrators handling the sale, has confirmed that Cyrus Capital Partners and Bain Capital are the final bidders for the airline.
Prior to making the final cut, the top five included BGH Capital, Indigo Partners and Canadian investor Brookfield Asset Management.
Cyrus Capital Partners has been a long-standing financial partnership with Richard Branson’s Virgin airline brands and was one of the original backers of Virgin America. One of the significant criteria for administrators is the retention of staff. Cyrus’s bid has been described as being built around keeping the airline intact as much as possible.
Business News Australia has reported that in May Bain Capital completed a majority in Japanese airplane manufacturer Showa Aircraft Industry for around ¥90 billion (AUD$1.23 billion).
Vaughan Strawbridge, the Joint Administrator of Virgin Australia Holdings, has stated “Both Bain Capital and Cyrus Capital Partners are well-funded, have deep aviation experience, and they see real value in the business and its future.”
“We will now spend the coming weeks facilitating in-depth bidder engagement with the stakeholders of the business and work closely with both preferred bidders in the lead up to binding final offers being received,” said Strawbridge
Strawbridge said it was still the Administrators’ intention to have a binding agreement in place by 30 June.