Gulf Air signs finance agreement with Standard Chartered Bank
Gulf Air and Standard Chartered Bank (SCB) have concluded an agreement covering the provision of a range of banking and financial services. Under the terms of the agreement, which was signed at Gulf Air’s headquarters in Bahrain in June 2003, SCB will extend credit facilities valued at $22 million to the airline.
This bridging finance is to be used in the three-year restructuring and expansion program that started in the second half of 2002. “Gulf Air is back in business. We have significantly improved our financial performance and achieved much higher levels of visibility in the market,” stated Gulf Air’s President and Chief Executive James Hogan.
“However, restructuring is not an overnight process and we appreciate the support of companies and organizations that share our aspirations in the region and that will work in partnership with us to meet the objectives of our three year plan,” he added.
Currently operating as a collecting banker for Gulf Air in Bahrain, India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Hong Kong, Singapore, the Philippines and Kenya, SCB is to extend its cash management network to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Qatar, Lebanon, Jordan and Oman.
Discussions are at an advanced stage to finalize other areas of collaboration and partnership, according to an airline press release. Gulf Air was founded in 1950. Today, it is owned by the Kingdom of Bahrain, Oman and the UAE. The airline’s network stretches from Europe to Asia and covers 45 cities in 33 countries. The fleet is one of the most modern in the Middle East and comprises 33 aircraft. The airline is in the first year of a three-year strategic recovery program.
SCB is a leading international bank in the Middle East and South East Asia. This year SCB celebrates the 150th anniversary of its establishment. It established its presence in Bahrain in 1923. — (menareport.com)
© 2003 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)