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AmEx Business Travel going public in $5.3bn deal

By Kevin Donovan

22:48, 3 December 2021

Diverse group of business travelers
AMEX Business Travel is going public in a SPAC deal with Apollo Strategic Growth Capital - Photo: American Express Business Travel

American Express is spinning off its American Express Global Business Travel unit to SPAC Apollo Strategic Growth Capital in a transaction that, at a $5.30bn valuation (£4bn), will create the world's largest publicly traded business travel company.

Apollo stock closed at $9.93 per share Friday, after rising as much as 1.93%, to $10.02 in early trading, from Thursday’s $9.83 per share closing price. Apollo, which trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker APSG, had over 19.8 million in trading volume Friday, versus the 365.058 average daily trade volume, according to data mainhtained by Yahoo! Finance. 

The new entity, to be named Global Business Travel Group, plans to list on the NYSE under the ticker GBTG after closing in the first half of 2022. Global Business Travel will maintain an agreement to continue using the American Express name for its travel services and meetings and events brands.

Transaction structure

Proceeds from the transaction total $1.2bn, split between Apollo’s $817m cash investment and $335m in PIPE financing. Investors in the PIPE funding were private equity investors Ares Management, HG Vora, as well as Apollo. Additionally, American Express will retain an equity interest in the new entity, along with travel investment firm Certares, online travel agent Expedia and Zoom Video Communications.

A private investment in public equity, often called a PIPE deal, involves the selling of publicly traded common shares or some form of preferred stock or convertible security to private investors. 

Additionally, Global Business Travel secured a $1bn term loan facility, proceeds from which will be used to repay $600m in existing debt and for general corporate purposes.


43,735.50 Price
-0.610% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 106.00

Oil - Crude

71.65 Price
-0.660% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0227%
Short position overnight fee 0.0007%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
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0.63 Price
+0.100% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.01168


15,918.20 Price
+0.310% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0263%
Short position overnight fee 0.0041%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 1.8


Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley acted as financial advisors to Global Business Travel. Evercore and Houlihan Lokey acted as financial advisors to Apollo. ApolloGlobal Securities, Credit Suisse, Evercore and Morgan Stanley acted as placement agents for the PIPE funding.

“Becoming a public company will be a historic milestone on GBT’s growth journey,” said AmEx Business Travel CEO Paul Abbott in a release. “We expect that becoming a listed company will give us the additional investment capacity to strengthen our commitment to provide unrivalled value, choice and experience to our customers and partners.”

Read more: Track the development of the New York Stock Exchange from 1792 to today


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The difference between trading assets and CFDs
The main difference between CFD trading and trading assets, such as commodities and stocks, is that you don’t own the underlying asset when you trade on a CFD.
You can still benefit if the market moves in your favour, or make a loss if it moves against you. However, with traditional trading you enter a contract to exchange the legal ownership of the individual shares or the commodities for money, and you own this until you sell it again.
CFDs are leveraged products, which means that you only need to deposit a percentage of the full value of the CFD trade in order to open a position. But with traditional trading, you buy the assets for the full amount. In the UK, there is no stamp duty on CFD trading, but there is when you buy stocks, for example.
CFDs attract overnight costs to hold the trades (unless you use 1-1 leverage), which makes them more suited to short-term trading opportunities. Stocks and commodities are more normally bought and held for longer. You might also pay a broker commission or fees when buying and selling assets direct and you’d need somewhere to store them safely.
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