Rolls-Royce may raise RM13.3b to boost balance sheet

by BLOOMBERG / pic by BLOOMBERG

NEW YORK • Rolls-Royce Holdings plc said it may raise as much as £2.5 billion (RM13.25 billion) as it weighs options to boost its balance sheet.

The British maker of aircraft engines is in talks with sovereign wealth funds, including Singapore’s GIC Pte Ltd, as in turns to investors for the funds next month, the Financial Times reported, citing three people with direct knowledge of the matter. The company is working with Goldman Sachs Group Inc on the planned equity raise, it added.

“We continue to review all funding options to enhance balance sheet resilience and strength,” Rolls-Royce said in a statement. The options include “a variety of structures including a rights issue and potentially other forms of equity issuance. Our review also includes new debt issuance”, it said.

The company said it hasn’t decided if it’s moving ahead with any of the options or the timing of the fundraising. Earlier in the week, it said it is continuing to consider ways to bolster its coffers after the coronavirus-driven aviation downturn slammed revenue.

The maker of wide-body turbines has been particularly hard hit by the drop in long-distance travel, with its share price down 74% this year and its debt downgraded further into junk. This puts RollsRoyce in a bind, faced with further diluting equity investors or borrowing money at higher costs. — Bloomberg