(Image: AAP/Darren England)

Indicative bids for Virgin Australia are due in today, after which administrator Deloitte and its advisers from Morgan Stanley will give three to five consortia the green light to proceed through to the final round next month.

Certain to receive a ticket to ride are the Melbourne-based private equity firm BGH led by Ben Gray, the son of former Tasmanian Liberal premier Robin Gray; and the US private equity firm Bain, which has former Jetstar CEO Jayne Hrdlicka on board and whose most famous alumnus is Mitt Romney.

The Canadian outfit Brookfield, one of the 10 largest
foreign investors in Australia (think Multiplex and the debt-laden Healthscope
as a start), is also expected to make it through to the second round despite
ominously losing dance partner Macquarie Group a few days ago.