UniCredit and Intesa Sanpaolo (Paris Branch) have recently signed an ECA Facility Agreement for the number one Russian domestic Airline UTair Aviation JSC, to finance its acquisition of a fleet of 20 new ATR 72-500 regional aircraft. The transaction is valued at US $ 426 million.
UniCredit and Intesa Sanpaolo acted as co-mandated lead arrangers and sole underwriters, for 50% each. UniCredit is acting as ECA Agent, SACE Agent and Security Trustee. Intesa Sanpaolo is acting as Coface Agent.
The deal has a tenor of 13.5 years and is 95% supported on a fifty-fifty basis by French export credit agency Coface and Italian export credit agency SACE.
This transaction is one of the largest ever concluded for the ATR consortium, a fifty-fifty joint venture between EADS and Alenia Aeronautica (Finmeccanica Group).
With the entry into service of these new aircraft, UTair will respond to the increasing market demand for regional connectivity in Russia, adding seat capacity on existing routes and opening new routes. UTair already operates a fleet of 17 ATRs. With the delivery of the new 20 ATR 72-500s, UTair will become the largest operator of ATR aircraft in Europe, with 37 ATRs.
"This important ECA Aircraft Finance deal further intensified the existing good relationships between UniCredit and both ATR and UTair" underlines Francesca Beomonte, Head of Structured Trade & Export Finance UniCredit Italy.
"Intesa Sanpaolo is glad to have closed this complex Export Lease financing in Russia, which was achieved thanks to a proactive teamwork among the Manufacturer, the ECAs, the Legal Advisers, the Airline and the Banks," said Jean-Michel Rudent, Head of SEF at Intesa Sanpaolo Paris Branch.
Filippo Bagnato, Chief Executive Officer of ATR, declares: "We are happy that major banks as UniCredit S.p.A and Intesa Sanpaolo with the support of the export credit agencies Coface from France and SACE from Italy have financed 20 ATR aircraft and consider our family of aircraft as a primary asset class. We are also pleased to see how they succeed to implement a complex financing structure. Thanks to their efforts, the introduction of the ATR 72-500s into Russia is now a reality".
London, 3rd June 2011
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