On July 7, 2017, the U.K. CAA announced its intention and the intention of the NCAA to remove the restrictions on commercial operations of the H225LP and AS332L2 model aircraft and to establish conditions for return to flight of such aircraft model types. The U.K. CAA stated that the manufacturer of such aircraft model types has developed certain specified modifications and enhanced safety measures and that a plan of checks, modifications and inspections will be undertaken before any flights take place.
On July 20, 2017, the U.K. CAA and NCAA issued safety and operational directives which detail the conditions to apply for safe return to service of H225LP and AS332L2 model aircraft, where operators wish to do so. We do not currently have any AS332L2 model aircraft in our fleet. We continue not to operate for commercial purposes our sole H225LP model aircraft in Norway, our thirteen H225LP model aircraft in the United Kingdom or our six H225LP model aircraft in Australia, or for search and rescue purposes, including training and missions, any of our other four H225LP model aircraft in Norway or our other three H225LP model aircraft in Australia. Our other aircraft, including SAR, continue to operate globally.
We are working with local regulators, Airbus, HeliOffshore and clients, to carefully evaluate next steps and demand for the H225LP model aircraft in our oil and gas and search and rescue operations worldwide. In compliance with the updated safety directives, we are continuing redelivery work on four H225LP aircraft for their planned return to the leasing company over the course of this fiscal year as per the lease redelivery requirements. This redelivery work includes required flight testing as a final part of returning the aircraft to full serviceability. We continue to monitor the situation closely, with the safety of passengers and crews remaining our highest priority.
It is too early to determine whether the H225LP accident that occurred in Norway in April 2016 will have a material impact on us as we are in the process of quantifying the impact and investigating potential claims against Airbus.
July 2017 Credit Agreement — On July 17, 2017, one of our wholly-owned subsidiaries entered into a multiple advance term loan credit agreement with PK Transportation Finance Ireland Limited and the several banks, other financial institutions and other lenders from time to time party thereto, which provides for commitments in an aggregate amount of up to $230 million to make up to 24 term loans, each of which term loans shall be made in respect of an aircraft to be pledged as collateral for all of the term loans. The term loans also will be secured by a pledge of all shares of the borrower and any other assets of the borrower, and will be guaranteed by the Company.
Each term loan will bear interest at an interest rate equal to, at the borrower’s option, a floating rate of one-month LIBOR plus a margin of 5% per annum (the “Margin”), subject to certain costs of funds adjustments, determined two business days before the borrowing date of each term loan, or a fixed rate based on a notional interest rate swap of twelve 30-day months in respect of such term loan with a floating rate of interest based on one-month LIBOR, plus the Margin.
In connection with the credit agreement, the borrower will guarantee certain of its direct parent’s obligations under existing aircraft operating leases up to a capped amount.
The proceeds of the term loans, which are expected to fund on or before August 30, 2017 unless otherwise extended, are expected to be used to, among other things, repay portions of the outstanding term loan indebtedness of the Company and for general corporate purposes. The lenders are not obligated to fund any of the term loans until the satisfaction of certain conditions to funding, as specified in the credit agreement.
Structural and leadership changes — On June 8, 2017, we announced structural and leadership changes intended to create a strategically realigned and profitable company in an unprecedented downturn. The new Bristow will have two primary geographical hubs in key areas of business, Europe and the Americas, resulting in a more regionally focused, cost efficient and competitive business positioned to win more contracts. When complete, we believe these changes will result in a smaller, more nimble company, with the same intense focus on delivering safe, reliable service to customers, and positioned for future growth and profitability.
Our Europe hub includes Africa, Asia, Australia, Norway, U.K., Turkmenistan and the Middle East. Our Americas hub includes Bristow Academy, U.S. Gulf of Mexico, Suriname, Guyana, Trinidad, Canada and Brazil. Despite these structural changes, we are still operating primarily out of the four operating regions previously discussed and therefore have not made any changes to the regional disclosure of results for our industrial aviation services segment operations in this Quarterly Report.
The structural change into two primary hubs is expected to generate significant cost savings, in part through lower general and administrative costs. In conjunction with this announcement, we also announced a number of leadership changes, which included the elimination of certain management roles and other corporate positions.