Air India delays $230m bridge financing RFP

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Air India delayed the request for proposal (RFP) for a $230 million bridge financing covering its first two Boeing 787 deliveries by two weeks.

The carrier approached financiers for a secured loan facility last month and asked for proposals for 6 January. In its latest filing, bids have been extended to 20 January.

The first aircraft, MSN 36276, is scheduled to deliver later this month. The second aircraft, MSN 36278, is planned for March. Both 787s are part of a seven-aircraft RFP with up to two GEnx-1B67 engines with bids due on 16 January. According to the sale and leaseback terms, Air India would sell the aircraft upon delivery and lease them back for a period of 12 years with an option to extend.

However the Indian carrier said that a sale and leaseback structure on the first two aircraft may not be possible to conclude in time and therefore invited offers from banks and financial institutions to arrange a six to 12 months' bridge financing.

The secured loan facility covers 100% of the cost of the aircraft, said Air India, and may not be covered by a Government of India guarantee.

The bridge loan will be rapaid on conclusion of the sale and leaseback transaction, it added.