Ai March 2015

Page 80

Support Services Deals

Bristow acquisition of Airnorth Bristow Group Inc. (NYSE: BRS), a leading provider of helicopter services to the worldwide offshore energy industry, announced that its affiliate, Bristow Helicopters Australia Pty Ltd., acquired an 85 - percent interest in Airnorth, [Inc., Ltd. and subsidiaries], a regional fixed - wing airline based in Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia. “This investment strengthens our position in Australia as it allows us to offer integrated fixed - and rotary wing logistics solutions, a combined offering that has proven valuable to our customers around the world,” said Jonathan E. Baliff, president and chief executive officer of Bristow Group Inc. “We also gain access to key southeast Asian markets where we do not currently operate. We view Airnorth as an exceptional operator, and are culturally and operationally aligned with shared core values of safety, quality and service.”

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Richard Marques, Principal, led the team at Greenhill who acted as sole financial adviser for Airnorth over the course of the transaction. Mr. Marques commented: “Greenhill provided independent strategic and tactical advice to Airnorth in its negotiations with a sophisticated counterparty. The Greenhill team worked seamlessly with Airnorth to optimise the transaction outcome for its shareholders and management, both in terms of value and risk.”

Richard Marques

He continued: “The combination provides Airnorth with a culturally and strategically aligned partner that is strongly capitalised and well placed to support and accelerate Airnorth’s future growth. The businesses are highly complementary, with Bristow and Airnorth servicing mutual clients, enabling Bristow to provide an integrated helicopter and fixed wing solution to its offshore oil and gas clients.”

Financial Adviser

Mr. Marques concluded by saying: “Bristow’s acquisition of Airnorth is an illustration of the increasing prevalence of cross-border M&A activity and the importance of advisers being able to deliver international insights to clients, leveraging global teams with deep sector knowledge.”

Bristow acquisition of Airnorth Bristow Helicopters Australia Pty Ltd. has announced that it has acquired an 85-percent interest in Airnorth, the largest regional airline operating across Northern Australia. Bruce Burnett led the team with Tim Scott, Vice President – Technical, at AVITAS who were representing Bristow Group. Mr. Burnett commented: “together we spent a week inside the airline’s facilities in Darwin conducting reviews of all facets of the airline’s operation. In addition to the onsite due diligence, the AVITAS Valuations Group provided a valuation of each of the 13 aircraft in the airline’s fleet.”

acquisition of

“This was the first time AVITAS had the opportunity to represent Bristow Group with this type of due diligence, operational review and aircraft valuations. As with many of our clients, AVITAS was recommended to Bristow as a knowledgeable and experienced consultancy.” Mr. Burnett continued: “AVITAS provided a third party review of the airline. This included interviewing senior management, reviewing the technical and flight operation functions of the airline, and inspecting the fleet of aircraft and records. The goal of the AVITAS visit was to review the airline’s operation and identify any risks or concerns. By providing a technical review of the airline, our client was able to close the deal with the confidence that they had done their due diligence and there wouldn’t be any hidden surprises. Having a third party, specifically one with an extensive airline operations background, review the airline and their operation provided confidence to our client that acquiring the airline was a secure acquisition.”

Bruce Burnett

“Bristow already has an extensive helicopter presence in Darwin. With the acquisition of an airline with multiple types of fixed wing aircraft, Bristow created a more extensive route network and larger presence in northern Australia.” AVITAS is an aviation consultancy with expertise in asset valuations, technical services, market analysis, and business strategy. With offices in Washington, DC and London, AVITAS serves a broad spectrum of worldwide clients including investors, lenders, manufacturers, airlines, maintenance facilities, government agencies, and law firms. For further information, please contact

80 Acquisition International - March 2015

Onsite Due Diligence - Operational Review and Aircraft Valuations

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