Australian composites company Quickstep’s existing eligible shareholders will be given the opportunity to participate in the capital raising through a Share Purchase Plan (SPP).

Under the funding agreement between Quickstep and La Jolla, La Jolla has committed to participate in the share placement for A$600 000 (on the same terms as other investors).

Quickstep will also be able to access up to a further US$15 million through the issue of convertible notes; an initial issue of US$7.5 million with an option, at Quickstep's discretion, to issue a further US$7.5 million.

These funds, together with expected funding assistance from the Australian Federal and State Governments, should see access to additional capital in excess of A$30 million by the end of 2012.

Mark Jenkins, Quickstep’s Chairman, explains that the company believes that it needs a mixture of short, medium and long term facilities to meet its financing needs.

"We have therefore raised A$3.3 million in immediate equity; US$15 million in medium term equity, to be drawn down over a period of time; and we are currently negotiating a debt facility to support the ongoing needs of our JSF production project. In addition, the NSW Government has, as previously announced, agreed to provide a grant to the company to assist us to set up our new facility in that State."

The funds are slated for the completion of Quickstep's move to Boeing’s former Bankstown facility; preparation and start of production under the Memorandum of Understanding signed in November 2009 with Northrop Grumman/Lockheed Martin and Marand/Bae Systems, covering 22 years; and some A$700 million of production and commercialisation; plus further development of the Quickstep Process for use in the global automotive and aerospace industries.

“We are confident that our position as the largest independent aerospace composite manufacturer in Australia puts us in an outstanding position to win further substantial defence contracts as demonstrated by the recent signing of the Memorandum of Understanding with Sikorsky," adds Quickstep managing director Philippe Odouard.