CALGARY, Aug. 1, 2017 /CNW/ - WestJet Airlines Ltd. (TSX:WJA) announced today that the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) has accepted its notice of intention to make a normal course issuer bid to purchase outstanding variable voting and common voting shares (the Shares) on the open market in accordance with the rules of the TSX.
As approved by the TSX, WestJet is authorized to purchase up to 5,856,671 Shares under the normal course issuer bid, representing 5.0 per cent of WestJet's issued and outstanding Shares, as of July 20, 2017. As of that date, there were 117,133,421 variable voting and common voting shares issued and outstanding. On any trading day, WestJet will not purchase more than 25 per cent of the average daily trading volume of the Shares for the past six months calculated in accordance with the rules of the TSX, being 76,477 Shares, except where such purchases are made in accordance with the block purchase exemptions under the TSX rules.
WestJet is authorized to make purchases during the period of August 3, 2017 to August 2, 2018 or until such earlier time as the bid is completed or terminated at the option of WestJet. Any Shares WestJet purchases under this bid will be purchased through the facilities of the TSX or through alternative trading systems at the prevailing market price at the time of such transaction or such other means as may be permitted by the TSX. Shares acquired under the bid will be cancelled. TD Securities Inc. will be appointed as the broker firm responsible for making purchases of Shares under the bid on behalf of WestJet.
WestJet believes that, from time to time, the market price of its Shares may not reflect their underlying value. At such times, the purchase of Shares for cancellation may be advantageous to shareholders by increasing the value of the remaining Shares. The purchase of Shares may also offset the dilutive effect of the issuance of Shares pursuant to WestJet's compensation plans.
During the period between May 18, 2016 and May 17, 2017, WestJet completed the purchase of 4,000,000 Shares under its previous normal course issuer bid at a volume weighted average price of $22.07 per Share.
From time to time, when WestJet does not possess material non-public information about itself or its securities, it may enter into an automatic securities purchase plan with its broker to allow for the purchase of Shares at times when WestJet ordinarily would not be active in the market due to its own internal trading blackout periods and insider trading rules. Any such plans entered into with WestJet's broker will be adopted in accordance with the requirements of applicable securities laws and subject to prior approval by the TSX.
Caution regarding forward-looking statements
This news release contains certain statements that may constitute forward-looking information within the meaning of applicable securities laws. This information includes, but is not limited to WestJet's intentions with respect to the normal course issuer bid and purchases thereunder and the effects of repurchases under the bid. This information is based upon certain material factors or assumptions that were applied in drawing a conclusion or making a projection as reflected in the forward-looking information. By its nature, this information is subject to inherent risks and uncertainties that may be general or specific. A variety of material factors – many of which are beyond WestJet's control – affect the operations, performance and results of WestJet and its business and could cause actual results to differ materially from the expectations expressed in any of this forward-looking information. Purchases made under the normal course issuer bid are not guaranteed and may be suspended at the discretion of WestJet's Board of Directors.
The forward-looking information in this news release is current to the date hereof, and is subject to change following such date. While WestJet may elect to do so, unless required by applicable law, it undertakes no obligation to update this information to reflect new information or circumstances at any particular time. Additional information about the risks and uncertainties about WestJet's business is provided in its disclosure materials, including its annual information form, filed with the securities regulatory authorities in Canada, available at www.sedar.com.
We are proud to be Canada's most trusted airline, powered by an award-winning culture of care and recognized as one of the country's top employers. We offer scheduled service to more than 100 destinations in North America, Central America, the Caribbean and Europe. Through our regional airline, WestJet Encore, and with partnerships with airlines representing every major region of the world, we offer our guests more than 150 destinations in more than 20 countries. Leveraging WestJet's extensive network, flight schedule and remarkable guest experience, WestJet Vacations delivers affordable, flexible travel experiences with a variety of accommodation options for every guest. Members of our WestJet Rewards program earn WestJet dollars on flights, vacation packages and more. Our members use WestJet dollars towards the purchase of WestJet flights and vacations packages on any day, at any time, to any WestJet destination with no blackout periods ̶ even on seat sales. For more information about everything WestJet, please visit westjet.com.
Recent recognition includes:
2017 Best Airline in Canada and Travellers' Choice Winner Mid-Sized and Low-Cost Airlines – North America (TripAdvisor Travellers' Choice awards for airlines)
2016 Canada's Most Trusted Airline (Gustavson School of Business at the University of Victoria)
2016 Canada's most reputable company for Corporate Social Responsibility (Reputation Institute)
2016/2015/2014/2013/2012 Ranked top three for Canadian Brands (Canadian Business Magazine)
2016/2015/2014/2013 WestJet RBC World Elite MasterCard ranked #1 in Canada (MoneySense magazine)
2015/2011/2010/2008/2007/2006/2005 Canada's Most Admired Corporate Culture (Waterstone Human Capital)
2015 Best Employers in Canada (Aon Hewitt)
For further information: WestJet Media Relations, 1-888-WJ-4-NEWS (1-888-954-6397), Email: email@example.com, Website: www.westjet.com; WestJet Investor Relations, 1-877-493-7853, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org