SkyWest Completes Purchase of Atlantic Southeast Airlines

ST. GEORGE, Utah, Sept. 8 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- SkyWest, Inc.(Nasdaq: SKYW), ("SkyWest") announced today that it has completed the purchase of Atlantic Southeast Airlines, Inc.,("ASA") for a purchase price of $425 million. As a result of the transaction, ASA is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of SkyWest. Together with SkyWest Airlines, Inc., ("SkyWestAirlines") SkyWest's existing wholly-owned subsidiary, the two carriers will create the largest regional airline carrier network in the domestic UnitedStates. The purchase transaction also resulted in the amendment and extension of existing Delta Connection operating agreements under which SkyWest Airlines and ASA obtained the rights to continue flying as Delta Connection carriers through 2020.

"The acquisition of ASA enhances our strategic position and accomplishes several key corporate objectives," said Bradford R. Rich, SkyWest Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer. "We are pleased that the deal has been consummated, but remain focused on the importance of serving our customers and providing a productive work environment for our employees," he continued.

SkyWest paid $350 million in cash at closing, consisting of $330 million of the purchase price and $20 million relating to certain aircraft financing deposits Delta had previously paid. An additional $125 million representing $95 million of the purchase price and $30 million relating to the return of certain aircraft financing deposits is payable to Delta, pursuant to the terms of an escrow agreement, upon the earlier of the assumption by Delta of the ASA and SkyWest Airlines Delta Connection Agreements should Delta file for reorganization under Chapter 11, or four years after closing of the transaction. SkyWest would be entitled to retain the escrow deposit if Deltafiles for reorganization under Chapter 11 and rejects its Delta Connectionagreement with ASA or SkyWest Airlines prior to the fourth anniversary of theclosing of this transaction.

Separate Operations

For the foreseeable future, SkyWest intends to operate SkyWest Airlines and ASA as wholly-owned subsidiaries, with separate labor groups and FAA operating certificates.

For the first year following the closing of the transaction, Delta has agreed to continue to provide to ASA certain transitional administrative and information technology services. SkyWest expects those functions will be transitioned to SkyWest personnel over the course of the coming year. As part of its planned transition, SkyWest intends to launch an intense "best practices" initiative to identify and capitalize on the strengths of each of SkyWest Airlines and ASA and to realize potential efficiencies.


SkyWest does not currently intend to make any significant changes to the operating schedules or aircraft deployment of either SkyWest Airlines or ASA. Customers of both carriers can continue to expect to receive the superior high-quality service to which they have become accustomed. Combined, SkyWest Airlines and ASA will have primary hubs in Atlanta, Cincinnati, Chicago, LosAngeles, San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Denver, Portland, and Seattle/Tacoma.

ASA and SWA Delta Connection Agreements

The new Delta Connection agreements provide for each of SkyWest Airlines and ASA to continue flying as Delta Connection Carriers for terms of 15 years.These agreements will continue to be capacity purchase arrangements with both carriers being compensated in a manner substantially similar to their prior agreements.

SOURCE SkyWest, Inc.