Chief Executive Officer, Rotorcraft
Managing Director, H.I.G. Capital
Rotorcraft Announces Acquisition of Bristow’s Production Management Flight Service Business
MIAMI - August 6, 2008 - H.I.G. Capital, L.L.C. announced today that one of its portfolio companies, Rotorcraft Leasing Company, L.L.C., has executed a definitive agreement to acquire the production management flight services business of Bristow Group Inc. (NYSE: BRS). The production management flight services business uses over 50 aircraft to provide helicopter transportation services to providers of management services and outsourced personnel to oil and gas companies in the Gulf of Mexico. The addition of the production management flight services business of Bristow further enhances Rotorcraft’s position as a leading provider of offshore helicopter support services to oil and gas producers in the Gulf of Mexico.
This business provides mission-critical transportation services to production management companies that support an attractive and loyal base of mid-major energy customers from strategically located onshore bases, an efficient fleet of short- and medium- range helicopters, and an extensive system of offshore fueling stations located throughout the Gulf of Mexico. Bristow Group previously announced their intent to exit the production management flight services business. The terms of the definitive agreement contemplate the sale of over 50 of Bristow Group’s Bell model-206 aircraft to Rotorcraft, in addition to various other assets, related equipment, inventory and parts currently used in its production management flight services business. Rotorcraft expects to transition a number of pilots and mechanics currently involved in the business to the Rotorcraft organization.
Rodger Bagwell, Rotorcraft’s CEO commented: "This is a logical extension of Rotorcraft’s current service offering. As a leading provider of aviation transportation services within the Continental Shelf, our customers have asked us to provide additional equipment and coverage, and we are determined to continue to grow to meet their needs. We look forward to the opportunity to serve and expand our relationships with production management companies throughout the entire Gulf."
The Gulf of Mexico is the largest oil and gas production market in the world with nearly 4,000 active production platforms. More than 95% of the production platforms are located in Rotorcraft’s target market segment of the shallow waters (or the Continental Shelf, defined as waters less than 1,000 feet deep).
"During the last three years with H.I.G. as our financial sponsor and partner, we have executed a number of sensible, strategic acquisitions in the Gulf of Mexico and successfully integrated them into our Company without disruption to customers," said Lloyd Marks, the founder and President of Rotorcraft. "With the hard work of all our employees, pilots and technicians, we have grown into the largest privately-held helicopter operator in the Gulf. We are confident that our Company’s focus on safety first, as well as our outstanding customer service and complete range of quality aircraft will continue to win us the respect of our employees, customers and peers serving the oil and gas industry in the Gulf."
About Rotorcraft Leasing Company
Founded in 1990, Rotorcraft is the largest privately-held operator in the Gulf of Mexico certified by the FAA to operate helicopter charters and execute long-term leasing agreements under an FAR 135 certification. The Company services the transportation needs of mid-major, "independent" oil and gas customers through a network of onshore bases located throughout all five states surrounding the Gulf of Mexico. Flight planning and tracking for its continually expanding helicopter fleet are managed from central Flight Operations Support in Broussard, Louisiana. For more information, please refer to the Rotorcraft website at www.rotorcraftleasing.net.
About H.I.G. Capital
H.I.G. Capital is a leading global private equity investment firm with more than $7.5 billion of equity capital under management. Based in Miami, and with offices in Atlanta, Boston, and San Francisco in the U.S., as well as affiliate offices in London, Hamburg and Paris in Europe, H.I.G. specializes in providing capital to small- and medium- sized companies with attractive growth potential. H.I.G. invests in management-led buyouts and recapitalizations of profitable and well managed manufacturing or service businesses. H.I.G. also has extensive experience with financial restructurings and operational turnarounds. Since its founding, H.I.G. has invested in and managed more than 200 companies worldwide. The firm's current portfolio includes companies with combined revenues in excess of $7 billion. For more information, please refer to the H.I.G. website at www.higcapital.com.