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Offshore contract heralds Gama's entry into special mission venture
The joint venture with Peter Bond and a new offshore helicopter contract are central to Gama Aviation's strategy to grow its position in rotary special missions both onshore and off.
Gama Group CEO Marwan Khalek.
Read this story in our November 2022 printed issue.

Gama Aviation has entered into a joint venture with Peter Bond to pursue rotary opportunities as part of the group's Special Mission SBU.

The joint venture, to be known as Bond Helicopters Limited, has won its first contract to support the offshore operations of an international oil and gas customer in the southern North Sea for a five year period. The joint venture and this new contract are central to Gama Aviation's strategy to grow its position in rotary special missions both onshore and offshore.

Bond Helicopters Limited is structured as a 50:50 equity joint venture. The results of Bond Helicopters Limited are expected to be fully consolidated into the Gama's financial statements as part of its Special Mission SBU.

The shareholders agreement that the parties agreed to enter into will provide the company with the option to call Peter Bond's shareholding in Bond Helicopters Limited. This will be valued at the same earnings multiple as that of the company at the time the call option is exercised and the consideration will be the newly issued shares of the company. The shareholders agreement will also provide Peter Bond with an option, after two years, to put his shares to the company. The consideration for the put option will be in cash and the valuation is conditional on the financial performance of the contract with a base level of £1.5 million adjusted by the attributable profit of the contract.

Peter Bond has extensive experience in both fixed and rotary aviation. He brings significant sector know-how and expertise having founded and managed large offshore helicopter businesses, both domestically and internationally, for some 30 years.

The new five year contract, commencing 1 January, 2024 is for the supply, operation and maintenance of five helicopters to support the transportation of personnel and equipment to and from the offshore installations of a major oil and gas customer in the southern North Sea.

The contract is expected to deliver overall revenues of circa $147 million over its five year term with margins consistent with those derived from the Gama's other special mission activities.

The company will invest in standing-up the operation, deploying the requisite capabilities and other working capital requirements during H2 2023 to enable the service delivery in January 2024. This circa £3.5 million investment will be funded from the Gama group's working capital resources and facilities. The helicopters will be procured under operating leases for an equivalent term.

Gama special mission division managing director Mark Smith says: “Our five year strategic plan for special mission included entry into the energy and offshore market, and I am delighted that we have been able to accelerate the execution of that plan. Bond Helicopters combines a proven track record and offshore experience, together with the operational capability and infrastructure of Gama Aviation's platform, giving the company a clear differentiator and enhancing our ability to participate in the opportunities we see in the offshore market, including those in wind, oil and gas, and future decommissioning work.”

Gama group CEO Marwan Khalek adds: “This joint venture and contract award are further evidence of the execution of our group's focused growth strategy and marks a significant milestone for our special mission business unit. As a proven catalyst for driving shareholder value from the offshore market there can be no greater exponent than Bond Helicopters. The group has enjoyed an excellent working relationship with Bond Helicopters for over 30 years. Having worked closely with Peter throughout that period, I am delighted that he has chosen to align his considerable expertise with those of the group to help us accelerate our growth in this important rotary special mission sector, both offshore and onshore.”

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