MISSISSAUGA, ON, May 1, 2013 /CNW/ - Ornge, Ontario's provider of air ambulance and related services, announced today two surplus AW139 helicopters have been sold. The selling price was $20 million USD for two aircraft, or $10 million per helicopter.
"With the sale of these helicopters, Ornge has taken another important step in addressing legacy issues inherited from previous leadership," said Dr. Andrew McCallum, President and CEO of Ornge. "Our objective has been to recoup as much of the original investment as possible. With this sale, we will no longer incur ongoing storage, maintenance and depreciation costs. We are confident that this is a deal which makes sense and minimizes impact on the taxpayer."
Ornge has completed the sale of both aircraft and transferred title to Wilmington Trust of Delaware. The proceeds will be used to pay down Ornge debt.
In 2008, the previous management at Ornge purchased 10 AW139 helicopters, and later exercised an option in the contract to purchase two additional helicopters at a price of approximately $11 million USD per aircraft. Ornge has been actively seeking a buyer for the two aircraft since new leadership was established in January 2012.
Ornge has made a number of improvements over the past year, including the appointment of Dr. Andrew McCallum as the new President and CEO, and aviation executive Rob Giguere as Chief Operating Officer. Ornge has also improved the patient relations process, hired a patient advocate, and introduced new conflict of interest and whistleblower policies.
Ornge, a not-for-profit .organization, coordinates all aspects of Ontario's air ambulance system, the critical care land transport program, paediatric transport program and the authorization of air and land ambulance transfers between hospitals.
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