Malaysian Airline System Bhd. (MAS)’s majority owner, sovereign fund Khazanah Nasional Bhd., has invited investment banks to pitch for a role overseeing the airline’s restructuring, people familiar with the matter said.
Khazanah has asked select banks to submit proposals by tomorrow, the people said, asking not to be identified as the matter is private. The fund, which controls 69.4 percent of Malaysia Airlines, has offered to buy the shares it doesn’t already own for 1.38 billion ringgit ($422 million) and delist the company by the end of the year.
The bank picked will help oversee what Prime Minister Najib Razak said Aug. 9 will be “painful steps” needed to overhaul the nation’s flag carrier, which lost two jetliners in disasters this year and racked up 4.9 billion ringgit in losses since the start of 2011. Khazanah plans to cut 6,000 jobs and invest 6 billion ringgit to help Malaysia Airlines return to profit within three years.
The state-owned fund aims to set up a new entity to take over Malaysia Airlines’ operations and then relist the company in an initial public offering within three to five years, it said Aug. 29. The investment bank picked to manage the restructuring will be in a strong position to also win a role on the IPO, one of the people said.
Raslan Sharif, a Kuala Lumpur-based spokesman for Khazanah, declined to comment when reached by phone.
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