Erickson Air-Crane Incorporated Signs Binding Term Sheet Regarding Its Acquisition of the HRT Air Services Business

Acquisition Expected to be Accretive and Significantly Expand Oil and Gas Market Initiative


PORTLAND, Ore. -- (BUSINESS WIRE) -- March 7, 2012 -- Erickson Air-Crane Incorporated (NASDAQ: EAC) (“Erickson Air-Crane” or the “Company”), a leading operator and the manufacturer of the powerful heavy-lift Erickson S-64 Aircrane helicopter, today announced that it has executed a binding term sheet and made significant progress toward completion of its previously announced intention to purchase the Air Amazonia aerial services business from HRT Participacoes em Petroleo, S.A. (“HRT”).

This binding term sheet, which replaces the non-binding letter of intent entered into on September 14, 2012, commits the parties to work in good faith towards establishing and executing definitive agreements and related documentation to cause the acquisition to occur on the terms set forth in the binding term sheet. Subject to the satisfaction of certain agreed closing conditions, the Company expects the transaction to close during the second quarter of 2013, significantly ahead of the original schedule.

Udo Rieder, President and Chief Executive Officer of Erickson Air-Crane, commented, “We are very excited to have reached this milestone in our efforts to soon expand our presence in the fast-growing oil and gas market in South and Central America through this deal. Our experience in that market has brought us non-seasonal, profitable revenue streams and illustrated significant expansion opportunities. We are grateful for the hard work conducted by teams on both sides of this transaction, which when closed we expect will create significant value for our shareholders.”

The agreed-upon total transaction price would be $65 million to $75 million contingent upon meeting certain contractual terms. If the transaction closes, the Company expects it would be immediately accretive.

The binding term sheet also provides that the Company would enter into a three year aerial services contract with HRT to provide ongoing aerial services for expected annual revenues of approximately $50 million, with an option for three additional years. The fleet to be acquired would include a total of 14 rotary-wing aircraft, including five Bell 212s, seven Sikorsky S-61s, and two Helibras AS350s. The service contract with HRT would use only a portion of Air Amazonia’s fleet, leaving significant capacity to be used to grow the Company’s business with other customers in the region and elsewhere.

Firm Commitment for a New Credit Agreement

The Company today also announced that it had received a binding commitment letter from a bank syndicate led by Wells Fargo Bank for a new senior secured credit facility of up to $165.0 million, consisting of a $115.0 million term loan facility and a revolving credit facility of up to $50.0 million. The Company and the bank syndicate will need to negotiate and execute a new credit agreement and related documents, which would replace the Company’s current credit agreement, also led by Wells Fargo Bank. The current credit agreement consists of a $65.0 million term loan facility and a revolving credit facility of up to $67.5 million, which matures on June 24, 2013.

The Company intends to use the available funds from the new credit agreement to satisfy the outstanding balance due on the current credit agreement maturing on June 24, 2013, to repay $15 million of the Company’s outstanding balance due on subordinated notes, and to finance corporate development opportunities, including the planned acquisition from HRT described above.

 

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