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Bain Capital plans second-round proposal for Virgin Australia

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Bain Capital is preparing a second-round proposal to become the owner and operator of Virgin Australia Holdings, the US alternative asset manager said on Sunday.

[KUALA LUMPUR] Bain Capital is preparing a second-round proposal to become the owner and operator of Virgin Australia Holdings, the US alternative asset manager said on Sunday.

Its Sydney-based managing director Mike Murphy will lead the team to bid for Virgin Australia, which entered voluntary administration last month after being overwhelmed by A$6.50 billion (S$6.05 billion) in debt. The carrier's debt was amplified by years of losses and a severe revenue shortfall from coronavirus-linked travel cancellations.

"We have the strongest capital base of any of the bidders," Bain said in an emailed statement. "We know aviation isn't going to return to normal any time soon, but Bain Capital is here for the long haul with deep funding to navigate these difficult times."

Bain joins a shortlist, which potentially includes Brookfield Asset Management, that is in discussions with administrators for Virgin Australia over rejoining the bidding for the airline after initially withdrawing from consideration. The administrator, Deloitte has described the shortlist as being made up of well-funded parties with strong aviation credentials.

Deloitte said previously it plans to work intensely with the shortlisted parties as it seeks binding offers by mid-June.

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