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ATSG agrees to purchase Omni Air

US air cargo company Air Transport Services Group (ATSG) has signed an agreement to acquire Tulsa-based charter operator Omni Air International for $845 million in cash.

The move, which remains subject to regulatory approval, would significantly expand ATSG's global reach and see the company acquire its first Boeing 777s, says Wilmington, Ohio-based ATSG on 2 October.

ATSG anticipates closing the deal in the fourth quarter. It will fund the purchase with money borrowed through an existing line of credit, the company says in a media release.

In business since 1993, Omni flies charters and operates widebodies under aircraft, crew, maintenance and insurance (ACMI) agreements. Its customers include the US government, ATSG notes.

Omni's fleet includes 13 passenger-configured widebodies – seven 767-300ERs, three 767-200ERs and three 777-200ERs.

Acquiring Omni will expand ATSG’s ACMI work, diversify its revenue with new customers and enable it to expand globally thanks to the capability of Omni's 777s, which have more range than anything in ATSG's fleet, that company says.

If the deal closes, Omni will continue operating from Tulsa as an ATSG subsidiary and will be headed by current CEO Jeff Crippen.

"Combining Omni Air and ATSG’s experience and skillsets unquestionably makes for a stronger company that can better serve its customers worldwide," Crippen says in the release.

ATSG primarily deals in cargo aircraft. It owns aircraft leasing business Cargo Aircraft Management and cargo airlines ABX Air and Air Transport International, which fly under ACMI agreements.

ATSG's fleet includes some 73 aircraft, including 767-200Fs, 767-300ERFs, 757-200Fs and 737-400Fs, according to company presentations.

Customers include the US military, shipping giant DHL, online retailer Amazon and other cargo carriers like West Atlantic.

An Omni acquisition would bring ATSG's fleet to more than 90 aircraft and provide ATSG another $430 million in annual revenue, ATSG says.

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