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Porter Aviation scraps IPO idea, will wait for markets to stabilize

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Porter Aviation Holdings Inc. said it won’t proceed with its proposed initial public offering due to volatile equity-market conditions.

Porter Aviation Holdings Inc. said it won’t proceed with its proposed initial public offering due to volatile equity-market conditions.

The airline, which operates out of downtown Toronto’s island airport, announced plans to go public in April but subsequently delayed the pricing of the IPO. Just last week, people familiar with the matter said it had lowered its targeted IPO price to C$5.50 a share from the previous range of C$6-C$7 a share, but still planned to raise about C$120 million.

In a statement Tuesday, Porter President and Chief Executive Robert Deluce said: “Our company is well-positioned to wait until the equity markets stabilize before deciding whether to proceed with a new public offering.”

The company said its year-over-year passenger numbers rose by more than 150,000 in the first quarter and that profitability metrics showed “significant gains.”

Porter is Canada’s third-largest scheduled carrier, but much smaller than the top two Canadian carriers, Air Canada (AC.B.T) and WestJet Airlines Ltd. (WJA.T). Porter began operations in late 2006 with two aircraft and now has a fleet of 20.