Atlas Air Worldwide to Be Taken Over by Investor Group

Atlas Air cargo aircraft being loaded.
Khoshhat, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

LONDON – Atlas Air, an American cargo company is receiving a financial boost worth $5.2 billion dollars. Its shareholders are set to receive $102.50 per share in cash, which translates to a 57% premium on 30-day volume-weighted average trading price.

Atlas Air Worldwide is one of the leading cargo companies, a provider of ACMI aircraft and other aviation-operated services. It announced on August 4 that it will be taken over by an investor-led consortium, with funds handled by associates of Apollo along with other investment affiliates of J.F. Lehman & Company and Hill City Capital.

The arrangement has an enterprise valuation worth $5.2 billion. 

Under the acquisition terms, Atlas Air Worldwide shareholders are promised to receive $102.50 per share in cash, which represents a 57% premium to the month-long volume weighted average training price per share of the airline from July 29th 2022 and onwards as common stock.

When this deal is completed, the airline will become a privately owned entity, and Atlas Air Worldwide common stock shares are no longer listed on the U.S based tech stock exchange platform, Nasdaq.

Meanwhile the cargo operator will resume its operations under the Atlas Air Worldwide brand, which will be directed by the incumbent executive team under John Dietrich. His expertise will allow the continuation of the operations of the airline as smoothly as possible, despite the change in hands of ownership. 

Management statements

Chairman of the Atlas Air Worldwide Board of Directors Duncan McNabb,  stated with optimism: “We believe this transaction will deliver an immediate and certain value to Atlas Air Worldwide shareholders at a substantial premium, and we are pleased to reach this agreement with the Consortium.”

“The Board’s decision to unanimously approve this transaction follows a careful evaluation and thoughtful review of value creation opportunities for shareholders.”

“We believe this transaction is the right next step to maximize value for our shareholders and the best path forward to accelerate the Company’s ability to execute its strategic plan and achieve its long-term growth objectives.”

John Dietrich, President and Chief Executive Officer of Atlas Air Worldwide, stated: “Over our 30-year history, Atlas Air Worldwide has grown to become a global leader in airfreight, delivering high-quality services to our diverse roster of customers around the world.”

“Following the closing of the sale to the Consortium, we will seek to leverage their resources, relationships and industry expertise to build on our strong financial and operational performance. Their investment in our company demonstrates their confidence in our people and our culture as we serve the growing needs of the global supply chain.”

Apollo Partners Antoine Munfakh and Jason Scheir and J.F. Lehman & Company Partner Alex Harman on behalf of the Consortium stated that: “Atlas Air Worldwide is a market leader that continues to set higher standards for excellence within the airfreight industry“

“With the strong market demand and long-term secular tailwinds for global air cargo services, Atlas is poised to capitalize on many opportunities for continued growth as a fund portfolio company of Apollo, J.F. Lehman and Hill City.”

“We look forward to leveraging our resources, capital and experience in the sector to support the talented Atlas team, alongside our partners in this exciting next phase.”

Atlas Air recent problems

Atlas Air has been in the spotlight recently regarding numerous claims of dissatisfaction with contracts for pilots after it has taken over Southern Airways in 2016. With Atlas Air in the hands of new investors, will these problems resurface?

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