ATA’s USD15.5m state bailout given go-ahead

ATA’s USD15.5m state bailout given go-ahead

AIRLINE INDUSTRY INFORMATION-(C)1997-2004 M2 COMMUNICATIONS LTD

A USD15.5m lease-back deal between the Indiana Transportation Finance Authority and ATA Airlines has been approved by the judge overseeing the airline’s bankruptcy.

The deal will see the authority borrowing the USD15.5m to buy assets from ATA Airlines and then leasing them to Indiana International Airport which will in turn lease them back to ATA Airlines. Officials from Indiana said that the deal would cover ATA’s payroll and operational costs until its gates at Chicago’s Midway Airport can be sold and the money repaid, securing hundreds of jobs at the airline’s Indianapolis base.

ATA Airlines’ bankruptcy attorney said that without the bailout the company would have gone out of business. The airline is set to sell its gates at Chicago, New York and Washington for USD87.6m, reports The Associated Press.

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