Banks close commercial loan on AirBridgeCargo’s first 747-8F

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A consortium of three banks including Citi, DVB and HSBC have closed financing on the first of five AirBridgeCargo's Boeing 747-8 Freighter.

The banks jointly arranged a commercial loan facility covering the aircraft, which was ordered by parent company Volga-Dnepr Group.

DVB is security trustee and facility agent in the transaction.Clifford Chance advised the lenders and Norton Rose advised AirBridgeCargo and Volga Dnepr Group.

AirBridgeCargo currently operates two 747-200Fs, one 747-300SF and eight 747-400SFs. The addition of the 747-8F aircraft is an important step in the Russian carrier's business strategy as it is phasing out its 747-200/300F fleet.

The second 747-8F is scheduled for March. AirBridgeCargo will receive its third aircraft in September.

The remaining two aircraft on order are planned for delivery in 2013. In addition, the Russian carrier has options for five more 747-8Fs.