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[BEIJING] China Eastern Airlines Corp has raised 8.55 billion yuan (S$1.73 billion) in a private sale of shares to a group of investors including China's biggest online travel agency Ctrip, which becomes the airline's fifth-biggest shareholder.
China's second-largest carrier by passenger numbers will use 6.83 billion yuan of the proceeds to purchase new aircraft, and 1.71 billion yuan to repay bank loans, it said in a filing to the Shanghai Stock Exchange on Tuesday.
The private placement came as China Eastern sought to diversify its shareholder pool.
In its first investment in the carrier, Ctrip bought 3.0 billion yuan in shares in the placement, giving it a 3.22 per cent stake.
Meanwhile China National Aviation Fuel bought an additional 3.0 billion yuan of shares, raising its holding in the airline to 4.05 per cent.
China Eastern shares rose 3.9 per cent to 6.92 yuan while the Shanghai Composite Index edged up 0.6 per cent.