Omni Helicopters International and Omni Blu Aviation Announce Strategic Joint Venture

Omni Helicopters International and Omni Blu Aviation Announce Strategic Joint Venture

Omni Helicopters International S.A. (“OHI”), parent of Brazil's leading offshore aviation specialist Omni Taxi Aéreo S.A. (“OTA”), and Omni Blu Aviation Ltd. (“Omni Blu”), the independent provider of aviation services in Nigeria, today announced their strategic alliance to launch, promote, and develop Omni Helicopters Nigeria (“OHN”). OHN will make use of OHI's technical expertise, access to aircraft and track record in safety and operating performance, as well as Omni Blu's local capabilities and strong service reputation. The joint venture, which is crafted to meet the more demanding OGP standards in offshore aviation as well as local content requirements in Nigeria, aims to create a solid source of safe and reliable service for the Nigerian oil and gas market, one of the world's most developed with c.60 helicopters in use.

The strategic alliance between OHI and Omni-Blu will help requalify Nigerian offshore aviation by accessing resources that will lead to the introduction of new aircraft technologies and safety systems, in turn boosting investment, training and formation. This will benefit the broader Nigerian aviation sector and impact the overall economy by elevating local capabilities and promoting increased employment, professional development and sustainable competition.

Captain Sunny Adegbuyi, Managing Director of Omni Blu, stated: “This alliance is great news for Nigeria and a welcome development for her economy, as well as the aviation and O&G sectors. At a time when aviation companies are divesting and pulling out of the industry, OHI has demonstrated its faith and confidence in the aviation policy of the present administration, carefully crafted and piloted by the Hon. Minister of State (Aviation) Senator Hadi Sirika, as fully endorsed by the President, Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR.  We are delighted to partner with one of the world's best helicopter operators at a critical time for Nigerian offshore aviation.  We aim to meet the rising demands of this market with a unique balance of operational strengths and local content.  We have known the founders of OHI for two decades and hold them in high esteem. OHI's achievements in Brazil, the world's fastest-growing offshore aviation market, are testament to the capabilities of our partner.”

Captain Rui Almeida, founder of OHI, commented: “We are excited to join forces with Omni Blu in the development of a safe and reliable offshore aviation market in Nigeria.  The current situation In Nigeria is similar to the environment we found in Brazil in 2006, when tightening regulations and substantially upgraded demands from oil and gas clients offered opportunities to new entrants.  We succeeded by transferring know-how, granting access to assets and empowering local excellence.  We are familiar with Nigeria, having operated there in the past, and understand the standards of oil and gas clients, having serviced many of these clients in Brazil already.  We share the ethos and ambitions of our valued partner Omni-Blu, and are confident that this alliance will truly make a difference to the Nigerian offshore aviation market.”

Omni Helicopters International acquires eight helicopters from the Synergy Group

Omni Helicopters International acquires eight helicopters from the Synergy Group

Acquisition of AW-139 and S-76 helicopters under long term contract with Petrobras

LISBON, 14th May 2014 – Portugal-based Omni Helicopters International S.A. [“OHI”] today announced the acquisition of four AW-139 and four S-76 helicopters from Synergy Group Corp. [“Synergy Group”], a South American conglomerate. All of the helicopters are contracted to Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. [“Petrobras”] and will become part of the fleet operated by the Brazilian affiliate of OHI, Omni Taxi Aéreo S.A. ["OTA"]. The acquired helicopters will complement OTA’s existing fleet of 10 AW-139 and 11 S-76 helicopters and will remain based at Brazil’s offshore heliports of Jacarepaguá and Macaé, where OTA already operates 30 helicopters. Following this transaction, OTA will operate 57 aircraft.

OHI’s investment was supported by Stirling Square Capital Partners [“Stirling Square”] and affiliated co-investors.

Based in Lisbon, OHI is a financial holding company engaged in fleet management and investment in helicopter operators providing transportation services to the offshore energy sector. Its helicopter fleet is operated mainly by OTA in Brazil, the world’s fastest-growing offshore energy market. OTA has been the fastest-growing helicopter operator in Brazil in recent years.

Rui de Almeida, Executive Chairman and co-founder of OHI and OTA, said “We are pleased to have made such a significant acquisition, it represents a natural consolidation step for OTA’s activities in Brazil and asset build-up is a critical component of OHI’s strategic development. The OHI team led by Richard Burman will be working closely with Roberto Coimbra, CEO of OTA, and his management team, to integrate the eight aircraft into the existing OTA fleet smoothly, so as to provide Petrobras with the high-quality, safe and reliable service it requires.”

Gregorio Napoleone, Partner at Stirling Square, said: “We support the transformational change underway at OHI and OTA. This management team has maintained an excellent operating record in Brazil, as its managed fleet of helicopters has grown in size and diversity. The acquisition consolidates OTA as the largest operator of AW-139 helicopters in Brazil’s offshore energy sector at a time when the medium segment has reached maturity and the heavy segment anticipates above-average growth on the back of pre-salt developments.”

Stirling Square backs Omni Helicopters International in growth strategy

Stirling Square backs Omni Helicopters International in growth strategy

A €40m growth capital investment marking the European private equity investor’s fifth transaction from its €375m Second Fund

LONDON, 23 November 2011 – Stirling Square Capital Partners [“Stirling Square”], the pan-European private equity firm focused on transformational cross-border transactions, today announced a €40m growth capital investment into Portugal-based Omni Helicopters International S.A. [“Omni” or “the Company"].

Based in Lisbon, Omni is the helicopter services specialist that was recently de-merged from the broader aviation group Omni Aviação SGPS S.A.; it owns a fleet of medium- and heavy-lift helicopters servicing the oil & gas industry and emergency medical transportation services.  The Company's helicopter fleet is operated by its Brazilian affiliate Omni Taxi Aéreo S.A. ["Omni Brazil"], the country’s second largest oil & gas helicopter services operator with 40 aircraft under management.  Brazil has one of the fastest-growing oil & gas markets in the world, particularly offshore, and Omni Brazil is the fastest-growing local operator, with five-year CAGRs to 2010 in fleet, revenues and flown hours of 46%, 64% and 41% respectively.

Based in Rio de Janeiro, Omni Brazil deploys mission-critical services in the transportation of personnel and equipment from onshore bases to offshore platforms and other installations as well as in emergency medical evacuations. The business operates its own pilot training academy and maintenance centres and is a best-practice operator with a lifetime accident-free record and average aircraft availability of 92% over the past five years. It is also the only operator in the country to be accredited with ISO-9001, ISO-14001, OSHAS-18001 and NBR-16001.

The investment is the fifth from Stirling Square’s Second Fund and capitalises on the private equity firm's unique capabilities in complex cross-border transactions.  Alongside Stirling Square are two prominent Brazilian co-investors, Salim and Eugenio Mattar, who have partnered with the firm's founding partners in a previous transaction. Together, the investors will provide financial and institutional support to achieve the growth targeted by Omni in the future.  Omni Brazil expects to expand its managed fleet by more than 40% in the next five years, in alignment with Brazil's offshore oil & gas development programme.

Stirling Square and the Brazilian co-investors will work closely with the Company’s management to grow the business through investment in new helicopters, further enhancements to Omni’s operating excellence and the development of associated corporate architectures to enable the growth projected.  Additionally, Stirling Square will support the pursuit of Omni’s international expansion plans.

Gregorio Napoleone, Partner at Stirling Square, said: “This complex transaction capitalises on our unique capabilities and represents a perfect fit with Stirling Square’s investment strategy, which focuses on promoting transformational change and superior value creation at companies characterised by defensible business models and talented management teams.  We are enthusiastic at the prospect of partnering with Omni Helicopters International's entrepreneurial managers and look forward to supporting them in their ambitious growth plans.”

Stefano Bonfiglio, Partner at Stirling Square, said: “This investment represents an opportunity to partner up again with prominent entrepreneurs, Salim and Eugenio Mattar, with whom we have worked successfully in the past in the development of one of the most profitable and fastest growing car rental companies in the world, Brazil-based Localiza Rent a Car (SAO: RENT3).  We look forward to replicating such value creation with Omni Helicopters International in a similar context.”

Salim and Eugenio Mattar, co-investors in Omni, said “We are delighted to support the continued development of Omni Brazil and to offer our experience in growing capital-intensive businesses profitably, and are confident in the future success of this excellent business platform and experienced management team.  Given the scale and importance of oil & gas investment in Brazil in future years, there is high potential for an operator with the exceptional characteristics of Omni Brazil.”

Cdt. Rui Faria de Almeida, Executive Chairman and co-founder of Omni Helicopters International and Omni Brazil, said “What we have achieved to date is a testimony to the quality and motivation of our managers, pilots, mechanics and ground staff.  This is an important day for our companies as we welcome new, like-minded partners to support us in our future expansion with capital and capabilities that are complementary to those of our talented team.”