Spirit Airlines shares soar as bidding war heats up

  • JetBlue Airways Corp. JBLU prepares a hostile takeover attempt to Spirit Airlines Inc. TO REGISTER after the latter rejected the former’s offer.
  • JetBlue plans to launch a takeover bid directly to Spirit shareholders. JetBlue has launched an all-cash, fully-funded tender offer for $30 per share.
  • JetBlue noted that the offer represents a 60% premium to the value of the Frontier transaction as of May 13, 2022.
  • In addition, JetBlue has expressed its full willingness to negotiate a $33 consensual transaction in good faith, subject to due diligence.
  • JetBlue also urged Spirit shareholders to vote against the merger with Frontier Group Holdings Inc. ULCC.
  • Spirit agreed in February to be acquired by Frontier in a cash and stock transaction valued at $2.9 billion.
  • “Ask yourself a simple question: Why isn’t the Spirit Board engaging with us constructively? The interests of Bill Franke’s Indigo Partners and the longstanding relationship between the two companies is the obvious answer,” JetBlue CEO Robin Hayes said in a letter to Spirit shareholders.
  • Spirit’s board believes the JetBlue merger would not be approved by antitrust regulators because of JetBlue’s alliance with American Airlines Group AAL.
  • Price Action: JBLU shares are trading up 2.09% at $10.27 and SAVE up 11.3% at $18.90 in premarket Monday.

Laura J. Boyer