5 December, 2011
RUBICON DIVERSIFIED INVESTMENTS PLC
('Rubicon' or the 'Company')
Rubicon, easyGroup and fastjet.com
The Directors of Rubicon (AIM: RUBI) are pleased to announce that the Company has entered into a conditional arrangement with easyGroup Holdings Ltd (‘easyGroup’), a company controlled by Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou, under which it is proposed that easyGroup will become a shareholder in Rubicon and will use the services of Stelios and easyGroup’s experienced aviation management team to provide general strategic, management and branding advice on the feasibility of implementing a low cost, point-to-point, no frills, all jet aircraft business model for Africa.
These arrangements with easyGroup follow the announcement by the Company on 18thNovember 2011 of its proposed new strategy in the aviation sector and the proposed appointment of David Lenigas and Geoffrey White (the Executive Chairman and CEO of Lonrho Plc respectively) to the Board of Directors of Rubicon. The proposed arrangements with easyGroup, the appointment of the new Directors and the change of strategy are all subject to the passing of various resolutions at the general meeting of the Company's shareholders to be held on 13 December, 2011 (“GM”).
Stelios and easyGroup’s management team will bring significant airline experience in the areas of operations, marketing, branding, IT, fleet selection and finance to the Company.
Under the proposed arrangements, and conditional on the resolutions being approved at the GM, easyGroup will be issued shares in Rubicon representing an initial 5% holding subject to certain conditions and will have the option to subscribe for a further 10% of the Company’s enlarged issued share capital. easyGroup will also earn a royalty fee for 10 years in relation to the Company’s use of the fastjet.com brand once certain conditions have been met. Subject to the GM, the Company will be allocating £80,000 per month for six months with effect from 13 December 2011 for a team of 4-5 senior aviation executives selected and led by Stelios, in addition to an one-off payment of £25,000 which became payable with the signature of the letter of intent.
easyGroup will provide branding advice to Rubicon which, if accepted, would lead to an agreement under which easyGroup will provide Rubicon with exclusive rights to use the fastjet.com brand for an initial period of twelve months. Following this period, provided the Company has taken delivery of a western standard jet aircraft liveried as fastjet.com or completed a substantial transaction which is classified as a reverse take-over under the AIM Rules, Rubicon’s rights to the fastjet.com brand would continue on a perpetual basis. Should no such transaction occur within 12 months, all rights in the fastjet.com brand would revert to easyGroup with no further obligations on either party.
Speaking today in relation to the announcement of the easyGroup agreement, Robert Burnham, Chairman of Rubicon said:
“We are very pleased to have secured the management team of easyGroup to advise us on our proposed strategy of building a world class aviation company with a focus on the significant potential in Africa. The experience and track record of the easyGroup management team in this area is unparalleled. This experience, coupled with the deep knowledge of African business of our new shareholder Lonrho PLC and our proposed new board members David Lenigas and Geoffrey White, places Rubicon in a strong position to deliver successfully on its proposed new strategy for developing aviation services in Africa”.
Rubicon Diversified Investments Plc
Tel: 07776 133 421
Tel: 0117 945 3471
Posted on 5th December 2011