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HomeBusinessBig DealsCapital A International to be Publicly Listed in the US

Capital A International to be Publicly Listed in the US

Capital A International, a global brand management platform that specializes in the licensing of AirAsia, will champion renowned brands to investors who want to tap into the massive 680-million ASEAN market with a proposed transaction value of USD 1.15 billion.

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Capital A International, a global brand management platform that specializes in the licensing of AirAsia, will champion renowned brands to investors who want to tap into the massive 680-million ASEAN market with a proposed transaction value of USD 1.15 billion.

Capital A International has finalized a business combination agreement with Aetherium Acquisition Corp, a Special Purpose Acquisition Company, to list Capital A International (CAPI) in the US public markets.

CAPI leverages the expansion, management and licensing of the AirAsia brand, and serves as a global marketing catalyst for ASEAN brands. The transaction claims to offer investors a gateway to participate in a fast-growing economic hub, on track to become the world’s fourth largest economy by 2030.

CAPI will be led by Capital A CEO Tony Fernandes, one of Asia’s most recognizable entrepreneurs – best known for acquiring AirAsia in 2001 and transforming it into a global airline.

Fernandes led the airline’s remarkable growth from just two planes to its current fleet of 242 aircraft, making it Asia’s largest low-cost carrier and among the top three strongest airline brands in the world. Operating across ASEAN with hubs in Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines and soon Cambodia, AirAsia flies 278 routes to 131 global destinations, having flown over 776 million passengers since its inception.

Commenting on the success of AirAsia, Fernandes says that over more than two decades, AirAsia has become a prestigious brand synonymous with value, innovation and inclusivity.

“AirAsia has transformed from a small Malaysian airline into a leading global aviation and travel brand valued by Brand Finance at over USD 1 billion, and enabled Capital A to build a diversified portfolio spanning aviation, aviation services, logistics, and digital companies in fintech, travel and hospitality. The evolution of the AirAsia brand has created a loyal global consumer base, positioning us favorably to expand our brand internationally through CAPI,” says Fernandes.

According to Fernandes, this listing will give CAPI access to the world’s most extensive and liquid capital markets, enhancing the company’s international credibility and presence while creating value for its shareholders.

CAPI’s platform integrates brand strategy, creative marketing and intellectual property development to position its brands and cultivate cultural significance among consumers. The intellectual property rights held by CAPI spans 23 countries, and the company intends to leverage the brand value of AirAsia through further licensing while implementing its successful strategy to propel and expedite the growth of its intellectual property portfolio.

“We are the first ASEAN-based brand in the travel sector to adopt this strategy and expand through licensing, leveraging our strong ties in ASEAN. Additionally, our growth strategy involves acquiring and developing more brands from this dynamic region. We are optimistic about the potential for our business to expand well beyond our origins, particularly in markets where intellectual property and brand value are highly esteemed by consumers and investors,” says Fernandes.

ASEAN offers a thriving economic landscape with a 680 million population, surpassing the US and closely trailing the European Union. Fueled by a growing middle-income population that is creating new consumer markets and economic opportunities, the region is poised for sustained growth.

“The recent surge in popularity of Asia-based media, entertainment, and lifestyle brands underscores the escalating global demand for brands originating in Asia,” says Fernandes.

Commenting on the partnership, Aetherium CEO Jonathan Chan says they have their growth strategy firmly set in ASEAN.

“We’re thrilled to partner with Tony and the CAPI team to capitalize on their proven track record and extend the brand beyond the world’s fastest-growing consumer-driven market. Under Tony’s exceptional leadership, AirAsia has evolved into an immensely successful and widely recognized brand in the region. With over 22 years of innovation in air travel and digital services, the company is strategically positioned to strengthen its leadership in Asean and pursue growth in international markets. This collaboration presents a distinctive opportunity for US capital market investors to participate in the rapid expansion of ASEAN economies through a company that embodies the region’s diverse culture, energy, and emerging opportunities,” says Chan.

According to Chan, the total available licensing global market is valued at USD 341 billion, with the ASEAN market accounting for USD 5 billion, growing at an impressive 13% annually, outpacing the global average.

Chan says that they will operate an asset-light business model and generate strong operating margins with minimal inventory and working capital requirements, fortified by a stable and recurring revenue stream from royalty fees, driving free cash flow. Chan claims that they will benefit from access to Capital A’s ecosystem, with over 50 million users, 22 million loyalty members, and over 56 million social media followers, expanding brand reach and enhancing CAPI’s brand-building capabilities.

Notes from the Editor: ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) is a political and economic union comprised of Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. Under the terms of the proposed transaction, CAPI says it will combine with Aetherium to become a publicly traded entity. The transaction reflects an estimated value for CAPI of USD1.15 billion. Although Capital A claims that the Boards of both CAPI and Aetherium have unanimously approved the transaction, the transaction remains subject to the approval of Aetherium shareholders and other customary closing conditions. Additional information about the transaction, including a copy of the Business Combination Agreement will be available in a current report filed by Aetherium on Form 8-K with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission at www.sec.gov.

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