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Aeromexico Weighs an IPO for its Loyalty Program

Skift Take

Is this IPO a case of careful business planning or IPO envy?

— Jason Clampet

Grupo Aeromexico SAB, Mexico’s biggest airline, is considering an initial public offering of its frequent-flier rewards program, according to two people with direct knowledge of the talks.

While the carrier wants to expand the Premier Loyalty & Marketing SAPI business further before a share sale, Aeromexico has studied a listing, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the company hasn’t yet decided to go forward with the transaction and an IPO may still be years away.

Carlos Torres, a spokesman for Aeromexico, declined to comment on the Mexico City-based airline’s plans for its rewards business, known as PLM.

Brazil’s Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentes SA took its loyalty plan Smiles SA public last year, setting off a 54 percent post-IPO rally as investors got the chance to value the business independently from its parent, which fell 30 percent. Sao Paulo-based Tam SA, which is now part of Latam Airlines Group SA, took its Multiplus SA rewards program public in 2010.

Tam has cited the IPO of Air Canada’s frequent-flier plan as the inspiration for Multiplus. Air Canada’s former parent, ACE Aviation Holdings Inc., sold shares in the loyalty program in 2005 and finished unloading the rest of its stake in 2008. The Montreal-based business is now known as Aimia Inc.

Aimia bought a 20 percent stake in PLM in 2012, valuing it at $518 million, according to a statement at the time from Aeromexico.

Editors: Brendan Walsh, Ed Dufner. To contact the reporters on this story: Jonathan Levin in Mexico City at jlevin20@bloomberg.net; Brendan Case in Mexico City at bcase4@bloomberg.net. To contact the editors responsible for this story: Brendan Walsh at bwalsh8@bloomberg.net; Ed Dufner at edufner@bloomberg.net. 

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