Frontier Airlines sold to investment group led by former Spirit Airlines Chairman William Franke

INDIANAPOLIS - Republic Airways has agreed to sell Frontier Airlines to an investment firm led by former Spirit Airlines Chairman William Franke for $145 million.

Franke's Indigo Partners LLC have a history of investing in airline transportation and related industries and creating successful, differentiated companies, Republic Airways said in a news release.

An affiliate of Indigo Partners is buying Frontier, but Indigo Partners is expected to also invest money in the airline after the closing.

"I am confident that Frontier will enjoy future growth as Indigo continues the process to position the airline as a leading ultra-low-cost carrier in the United States," said Republic Airways Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Bryan Bedford.

The acquisition is contingent on agreements being reached with the Association of Flight Attendants and FAPAInvest LLC no later than Oct. 31. It also is conditioned on other third-party commercial agreements, the receipt of some third-party consents and approval from the Federal Communications Commission for the transfer of Frontier's radio licenses.

The deal, approved by Republic's board, is expected to close in December if the appropriate conditions are met.

Republic Airways Holdings Inc. is based in Indianapolis. Frontier is based in Denver. Frontier offers service to more than 75 destinations in the United States, Mexico, Costa Rica, Jamaica and the Dominican Republic. The airline employs more than 3,900 people.

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