Saturday, October 21, 2017, 8:25 am

Etihad Airways wins Islamic Deal of the Year Award for debut sukuk

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ABU DHABI: Etihad Airways has been awarded the Islamic Deal of the Year by Global Transport Finance for its debut Sukuk.

The Abu Dhabi-based national airline of the United Arab Emirates successfully completed a Sukuk issuance raising US$1.5 billion in November 2016 – the largest ever in the aviation industry in the Middle East and North Africa region (MENA).

The Sukuk represented a landmark debt capital market transaction for both the aviation sector and the Islamic markets. The ground-breaking funding from institutional investors across MENA and Europe was the first ever debt capital markets issuance by Etihad Airways.

The airline successfully optimised pricing and size of the Sukuk, reflected by investors’ appetite which resulted in the final transaction – US$1.5 billion against an initial indication of US$500 million.

HSBC, J.P. Morgan and National Bank of Abu Dhabi were mandated as Joint Arrangers for the five-year issuance, with Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank, Dubai Islamic Bank and First Gulf Bank mandated as Joint Bookrunners.

James Rigney, Etihad Aviation Group Chief Financial Officer, said: “This historic transaction was the result of a solid plan put together by our Treasury team which generated great feedback from the markets.”

James Hogan, Etihad Aviation Group President and Chief Executive Officer, added: “An innovative approach to business is at the heart of our strategy at Etihad Airways. I am delighted to see the high level of confidence in our business reflected by the ground-breaking Sukuk, and credit to James Rigney and his treasury team for creating a framework that developed a strong appetite from the markets, particularly during challenging times in the financial sector and for our industry.”

Global Transport Finance (GTF) is a transportation finance publication for the commercial aviation, shipping and rail industries, reporting on the latest developments in aircraft, shipping and rail financing / leasing. The accolade was presented at GTF’s annual awards event in London.

Etihad distributes donations to 802 refugee families

BEIRUT: A delegation from Etihad Airways distributed packages containing food, clothes, shoes, cleaning materials and blankets during the past few days to 802 Syrian, Palestinian and Lebanese families in Beirut, Akkar, and Sidon.

The donations were made in co-operation with the Relief and Humanitarian Aid Organisation of Lebanon’s Dar Al-Fatwa.

These donations are part of the “UAE response to the crisis of Syrian refugees, Winter 2017” campaign, according to a statement by the Attach? for Humanitarian and Development Affairs from the UAE’s embassy in Lebanon.

Khaled Gaith Al Mehairbi, Senior Vice President for Operational Affairs for Etihad Airways at Abu Dhabi International Airport, highlighted the airline’s commitment to contribute to the “Year of Giving” initiative in 2017, which was launched by UAE President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan. He further stressed the strong sense of co-operation shown by the company’s employees in distributing the donations to the Syrian refugees in Lebanon.

He also praised the support of the UAE Red Crescent and the Attach? for Humanitarian and Development Affairs at the UAE’s embassy in Lebanon, and expressed his gratitude for their efforts in providing adequate storage space for humanitarian supplies, as well as their participation in the distribution.

The “UAE response to the crisis of Syrian refugees, Winter 2017” campaign aims to provide for the needs of more than 150,000 refugees from Syria, Palestine and Lebanon.

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