ASX-LISTED freight and logistics operator Wiseway has announced it will not proceed with plans to acquire Southeast Asian Airlines (SEAIR).

Instead, it is “redirecting its focus” to establish a new freight forwarding branch in the Philippines.

Wiseway in November last year announced its plans to acquire a 51% majority stake in SEAIR, a Philippines-based cargo airline.

Wiseway’s move to discontinue the SEAIR acquisition follows the termination of an aircraft lease agreement, announced in December 2022. The aircraft lease agreement was cancelled after a “dispute with the lessor”, according to the company’s statement to the ASX at the time.

The termination of the lease prevented the fulfilment of critical conditions required for completion of the SEAIR acquisition, the company said.

It added that the pursuit of air cargo freighter projects is “no longer necessary” for the company because international passenger flights are resuming rapidly. It can now use cargo space from all airlines to meet client requirements.

After a “thorough reassessment”, Wiseway has notified SEAIR of the decision to terminate the acquisition due to unmet completion conditions. The company said there are no further obligations arising from the termination of the SEAIR deal.

Wiseway is now looking to redeploy resources previously earmarked for the SEAIR project to set up the new freight forwarding branch in the Philippines.

“The Philippines’ strategic geographical location offers a unique value proposition to our company, serving as a gateway to a vast and rapidly growing regional market,” Wiseway managing director Florence Tong said.

“Its proximity to major international trade routes and strong ait and sea connectivity positions it as an ideal location for a logistics hub,” she said.

“Wiseway’s presence in Manila capitalises on these advantages, enabling us to efficiently serve not only the Philippines market but also act as a strategic link for our clients to the broader Southeast Asia region.”

Wiseway’s expansion into the Philippines would begin with setting up an office in Manila, leveraging existing resources with minimal investment.

In the Philippines, Wiseway plans to provide a suite of freight forwarding service including air freight, sea freight and e-commerce brokerage services.

Wiseway’s network spans six countries with the inclusion of the Philippines. It also has a presence in Australia, New Zealand, USA, China and Singapore.