February 5, 2015 / 11:50 AM / in 3 years

UPDATE 1-Japan's Skymark to seek sponsors besides Integral

(Adds quotes from Integral at press conference)

TOKYO, Feb 5 (Reuters) - Japan’s Skymark airlines, which last week filed for bankruptcy protection, will seek other sponsors alongside investment fund Integral Corp to help turn its business around, Skymark and Integral said on Thursday.

Skymark filed for protection from creditors with total liabilities of 71.09 billion yen ($605.7 million). Integral has agreed to provide 9 billion yen to help keep the business going, said Nobuo Sayama, representative director of the fund.

Sayama said at a joint press conference that the money will come from Integral’s 44.2 billion yen fund and it would seek other parties to help sponsor the restructuring.

“We will look for sponsors broadly and we welcome any proposals from any entities,” Sayama said. “But we would be happier to see proposals from strategic players rather than financial sponsors,” he added.

Skymark, Japan’s largest budget airliner, operated without any affiliation with ANA Holdings or Japan Airlines Co , but Sayama said he did not care about its independence, opening the way for a possible tie up with either of its two bigger rivals.

Skymark owns valuable landing rights at Tokyo’s crowded Haneda airport. The airline holds 36 landing slots at Japan’s main domestic hub. ($1 = 117.3600 yen) (Reporting by Junko Fujita; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle)

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