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Fly Leasing sold

Fly Leasing sold
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Written by Harry Johnson

Carlyle Aviation to acquire Fly Leasing for $17.05 per share

  • Fly Leasing Limited announces agreement to be acquired by an affiliate of Carlyle Aviation Partners
  • FLY’s Board of Directors enthusiastically recommends this transaction to its shareholders
  • FLY shareholders will receive $17.05 per share in cash, representing a total equity valuation of approximately $520 million

Fly Leasing Limited announced today that it has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by an affiliate of Carlyle Aviation Partners, the commercial aviation investment and servicing arm within The Carlyle Group’s $56 billion Global Credit platform.  Under the terms of the Merger Agreement, FLY shareholders will receive $17.05 per share in cash, representing a total equity valuation of approximately $520 million. The total enterprise value of the transaction is approximately $2.36 billion. FLY’s portfolio of 84 aircraft and seven engines is on lease to 37 airlines in 22 countries.

“This transaction represents strong value for FLY shareholders at a time when airlines are facing an extremely difficult environment and smaller aircraft lessors are disadvantaged in the debt markets,” said Colm Barrington, CEO of FLY. “After a thorough review and evaluation of its options, FLY’s Board of Directors enthusiastically recommends this transaction to its shareholders.”

The per share cash consideration represents a premium of approximately 29% to FLY’s closing price on March 26, 2021 and a 43% premium to the volume-weighted average share price during the last 30 trading days. 

The Board of Directors of FLY has approved the Merger Agreement, acting upon the recommendation of a special committee appointed by the Board of Directors and consisting solely of independent and disinterested directors, and has recommended that FLY shareholders vote in favor of the transaction.

The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021 and is subject to customary closing conditions, including applicable regulatory clearance and the approval of FLY’s shareholders.  Given the pending transaction, FLY will not host a first quarter earnings call.

Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC is acting as financial advisor to FLY and Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP, Clifford Chance US LLP, Conyers Dill & Pearman, and McCann FitzGerald are acting as FLY’s legal counsel.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP is acting as legal counsel to BBAM LP, FLY’s manager and servicer. 

RBC Capital Markets is acting as financial advisor and providing financing to Carlyle Aviation on the transaction. Milbank LLP and Wakefield Quin Limited are acting as legal counsel to Carlyle Aviation Partners.