Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) has taken formal ownership of the CRJ Regional Jet line from Bombardier Aerospace (BBA, Montréal Trudeau) following the closure of the sale agreement on June 1.

The transaction was undertaken through the Japanese conglomerate's wholly-owned Canadian subsidiary, MHI RJ Aviation Group (MHIRJ), for a cash consideration of approximately CAD550 million Canadian dollars (USD400 million), subject to post-closing adjustments and MHI's assumption of liabilities of roughly CAD200 million (USD145.7 million) related to credit and residual value guarantees and lease subsidies.

Headquartered in Montréal, Canada, MHI RJ Aviation Group (MHIRJ) will oversee the CRJ programme's maintenance, engineering, airworthiness certification support, refurbishment, asset management, marketing, and sales activities, along with its type certificates and related intellectual property rights.

The transaction also includes the related services and support network mainly located in Mirabel and Toronto (Canada), and Bridgeport and Tucson (United States). CRJ Series spare parts will continue to be distributed from depots in Chicago (United States) and Frankfurt (Germany).

As previously reported, Bombardier will continue to supply components and spare parts and will assemble the remaining 15 CRJ aircraft - all CRJ900s including nine for Chorus Aviation and four for Delta Air Lines - in its backlog as of March 31, 2020, on behalf of MHI until all contracts have been fulfilled.

It should be noted that in its 1Q20 financials, Chorus Aviation said that as a result of the COVID-19-induced shutdown of its production line earlier this year, Bombardier had notified Chorus of a delay in the production of its nine CRJ900s "that were originally scheduled for delivery in 2020". Joe Randell, Chorus's President and Chief Executive Officer, said during an ensuing earnings call that there was a "possibility" that "some" deliveries could run into 2021 as a result of the delay, but that confirmation would only be announced later this summer.