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Virgin Atlantic gears up for new £160M fundraising campaign

British airline Virgin Atlantic, which has been hit by the coronavirus pandemic like most companies in its sector, plans to raise 160 million pounds ($222.75 million) in a new funding campaign.

The campaign comes after the closing of the deal it made with asset manager Griffin Global last January to sell and lease back two Boeing 787s as part of its plan to strengthen its balance sheet.

The deal raised more than $230 million from the two planes, the proceeds of which was used to pay off a loan that Virgin Atlantic took out as part of its bankruptcy bailout last year.

British businessman Richard Branson’s Virgin Group will secure about £100m, while the rest will suffer some delays, and Virgin Atlantic said last November that the £1.2bn bailout, which was closed two months ago, will protect the company from bankruptcy even if the state of the aviation and travel sector worsens.

Over the past year, the company deducted 335 million pounds of expenses and announced that it would lay off 4,650 employees during the pandemic, halving its workforce and significantly shrinking its staff.

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