Rolls-Royce shares tumble as it considers £2.5bn fundraiser

Rolls-Royce shares plummeted after the engineering giant confirmed it is considering tapping investors for £2.5 billion to shore up its finances.

Shares in the business tumbled by as much as 10% in early trading after it confirmed reports that the fundraiser was a funding option being reviewed by the business.

It told investors that, amongst other options, it is “evaluating” the merits of raising up to £2.5 billion in equity through a rights issue or other fundraiser.

The review will also see it consider taking on new debt to support its finances after the aerospace industry was hammered by the pandemic.

In a statement, the company added: “We continue to review all funding options to enhance balance sheet resilience and strength.

“No final decisions have been taken as to whether or when to proceed with any of these options or as to the precise amount that may be raised.”

The Financial Times reported that the company is in talks with a number of sovereign wealth funds, including Singapore’s GIC, to secure the funds.

Derby-based Rolls announced in May that 9,000 jobs would be axed globally in response to the crisis – 3,000 of which will be in the UK.

Last month, the company slid to a £5.4 billion half-year loss as it was battered by the downturn in air travel.