Russian leasing company Ilyushin Finance Co. (IFC) will acquire a 74% stake in the local carrier Red Wings through a share offering. The shares will be exchanged for Red Wings’ pending debt obligations, an IFC spokesperson specified. The acquisition decision was approved by IFC’s board, which agreed that the lessor’s role in managing the airline would be proportionate to the acquired share.
The decision was due in September 2015, but the negotiations process took longer than expected because coordination of the managerial terms with Red Wings stakeholders required additional efforts, IFC’s general director, Alexander Rubtsov, explained earlier.
Red Wings carried 980,000 passengers in January-November 2015, taking the 18th position among Russia’s largest airlines. It operates a fleet of five regional Sukhoi Superjet 100 (SSJ 100) aircraft and eight Tupolev Tu-204 narrowbodies, of which seven are leased from IFC. According to Red Wings’ top manager Evgeny Klyucharev, the carrier is in talks with the lessor over a number of Tu-214s formerly operated by Transaero.
In the past, both IFC and Red Wings already had the same owner. It was National Reserve Corporation (NRC) controlled by businessman Alexander Lebedev. In January 2012, NRC sold its blocking stake at IFC, and in April 2013 it sold 100% of the Red Wings shares.
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