Data: Helicopter debt transactions in 2012

Bond issues and export credit for helicopter operators dominated 2012 with Milestone Aviation Group also tapping the loan market three times.
AgustaWestland AW109 Grand New.

AgustaWestland’s AW109 Grand New helicopter.

Milestone Aviation Group

Country: Ireland
Date: March 2013
Size: $180 million
Type: Ex-Im Loan
Assets: Nine Sikorsky S-92s
Lessees: Bond, Bristow, Lider, Omni
Arranger: Deutsche Bank
Notes: Likely to be financed via an Ex-Im bond.

Milestone Aviation Group

Country: Ireland
Date: December 13, 2013
Size: $250 million Securities
Type: 144a private bond placement
Term: Five year
Bookrunners: Jefferies, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, and Nomura

Coupon: 8.625%
Issue: 100
Yield: 8.625%
Rating: Unrated
Maturity 12/15/2017
Notes: First time Milestone has issued bonds.

Era Group

Country: US
Date: December 4, 2013
Size: $250 million
Type: 144A private placement
Term: 10 years
Bookrunners: Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan, Wells Fargo
Coupon: 7.75$
Issue: 98.31
Yield: 8%
Rating: B/B2
Maturity: December 15, 2022

Omni Helicopters International (Omni Taxi Aereo)

Country: Brazil
Date: November 2012
Size: $40 million
Type: Ex-Im guaranteed loan
Assets: 3 x AW139 helicopters
Term: 10 years
Arranger: Toronto-Dominion Bank
Loan provider: Toronto-Dominion Bank
Notes: First time the Ex-Im Bank has financed AW139 helicopters for non government operator.

Aeroservicios Especializados S.A. de C.V. (ASESA)

Country: Mexico
Date: October 14, 2012
Size: $60 million
Type: Ex-Im Guaranteed Loan
Assets: S-76D
Arranger: Airfinance
Loan provider:
Notes: First deal under Ex-Im’s new Qualified Advisor Programme.

Bristow Group

Country: US
Date: September 27, 2012
Size: $450 million
Type: Senior bond
Term: 10 years
Bookrunners: Credit Suisse, Sun Trust, Bank of America, Citi, JPMorgan, Wells Fargo
Coupon: 6.25%
Issue: 100
Yield: 6.25%
Rating: BB/Ba3
Maturity: October 15, 2012
Notes: Used to refinance $350 million of 7.5% notes due 2017 and for general corporate purposes. Bristow had looked at issuing 8 year bond at same time but instead upsized by $50 million.

Milestone Aviation Group

Country: Ireland
Date: March 2012
Size: $265 million term loan
Arranger: Deutsche Bank
Participants: Nomura, Huntington Bank, CIT, 1st Source Bank, EverBank Commercial Finance and Credit Suisse

Milestone Aviation Group

Country: Ireland
Date: 2012
Size: $75 million loan
Arranger: SEB
Notes: Funded helicopters for Scandinavian operators

Milestone Aviation Group

Country: Ireland
Date: 2012
Size: $75 million loan
Arranger: SG
Notes: Includes facility to cover pre-delivery payments (PDP).

CHC Helicopters

Country: Canada
Date: October 2011
Size: $60 million
Type: SACE guaranteed loan
Assets: AgustaWestland helicopters
Bank: SG, BNP, Unicredit

Lider Aviacao

Country: Brazil
Date: July 2011
Size: $18 million
Type: US Ex-Im guaranteed loan
Assets: 1 S-92
Term: 10 years
Arranger: Private Export Funding Corp (Pefco)
Loan provider: Private Export Funding Corp (Pefco)

Terry Spruce

Terry is Senior News Editor and writes for both Corporate Jet Investor and Helicopter Investor. He is also responsible for our helicopter guides. Terry has been an aviation enthusiast since the early 1970s. He is a lapsed Private Pilot and ex-Piper Cherokee owner. He has flown a number of light aircraft and is comfortable sitting in the co-pilot's seat or the back of any aircraft. Before moving to journalism he was a banker for 20 years. You can contact him at: or follow him on twitter @Terry_Spruce

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