Antitrust Lawyer Blog Commentary on Current Developments

DOJ REQUIRES DIVESTITURE IN SIGNATURE’S ACQUISITION OF HAWKER BEECHCRAFT’S FLIGHT SUPPORT SERVICE BUSINESS

On July 3, 2008, the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) entered into a settlement agreement allowing Signature Flight Support Corporation to acquire Hawker Beechcraft’s (“Hawker”) fixed based operations (“FBO”). The settlement agreement requires Signature to divest its flight support service assets.
Signature and Hawker are the only FBOs at Indianapolis International Airport (“IND”). The DOJ requires either the divestiture of Signature’s or Hawker’s FBO assets at IND to a DOJ approved buyer. An FBO is a service center that provides aircraft fuel another related services to general aviation customers, which include charter, private, and corporate aircraft operators. According to the DOJ, the combination of the FBOs results in less competition, higher prices, less innovation, and lower quality of service. It would have also resulted in a monopoly of FBO services in the flight support services industry at IND.

Signature is based in Orlando, FL and is the largest owner and operator of FBOs at 45 airports nationwide. Last year, its revenues from U.S. FBOs were nearly $600 million. Hawker, located in Wichita, KS, has FBOs at seven airports in the U.S. earning $73 million in FBO revenues last year.


Andre Barlow

(202) 589-1834
abarlow@dbmlawgroup.com