HNA shelves second IPO in two weeks, defers Swissport share sale

Signage for HNA Group Co. is displayed atop the company's building in Beijing, China, on Thursday, Feb. 1, 2018. Photographer: Giulia Marchi/Bloomberg

HNA Group Co. is postponing a planned share sale in its aircraft ground handling company Swissport Group, roughly two weeks after abandoning a similar plan for its Swiss airline caterer Gategroup Holding AG.

Swissport Group, in a statement Tuesday, said it will defer the IPO “due to current market conditions.” The plan for an IPO was announced in late January, just before the recent surge in volatility.

IPOs have been unraveling since then as the wild market swings made conditions for a listing more difficult to predict. Gategroup, which was set to raise as much as 1.1 billion francs ($1.2 billion), canceled that sale 24 hours before trading was scheduled to start because it didn’t get the money it was seeking.

HNA, which started out as a fledgling regional airline, is unwinding a global debt-fueled acquisition spree as it seeks to trim one of the largest debt piles in corporate China. The giant conglomerate plans to raise $16 billion in the first half, a goal it may exceed after agreeing this month to divest all or part of its stake in Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc.

Swissport was working with Credit Suisse Group AG, Barclays Plc and JPMorgan Chase & Co. on the IPO, according to a spokesman for the company. Credit Suisse, UBS Group AG and JPMorgan were joint bookrunners for the canceled Gategroup IPO.

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In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

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  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.