Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, Inc. says it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Southern Air Holdings, Inc., for USD110 million in cash. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and approval by the US Department of Transportation (DOT), and is expected to close in the next few months.

The transaction includes Worldwide Air Logistics Group, Inc. and its two operating subsidiaries, Southern Air, Inc. and Florida West International Airways, Inc. Southern Air will continue to operate out of Florence, Kentucky while Florida West will continue to operate out of Miami, upon closing of the transaction as subsidiaries of Atlas Air Worldwide

Aside from bringing USD100 million in additional annual sales and revenue to the Atlas Group, Southern Air's fleet of five B737-400(F)s and four B777-Fs will also open up a new market segment to Atlas which, through its Atlas Air and Polar Air Cargo (PO, New York JFK) units, operates the world's largest fleet of B747 freighters (twenty-eight B747-400(F)s and sixteen B747-8(F)s). For its part, Florida West operates one B767-300(F) on lease from LAN Cargo (Santiago de Chile Int'l).

“We are very pleased to announce a strategically compelling, highly complementary and immediately accretive acquisition of Southern Air,” William J. Flynn, President and Chief Executive Officer of Atlas Air Worldwide, said. “And we are eager to capitalize on the substantial opportunities that the transaction will provide, especially B777 and B737 aircraft operations."

"The result will be a more diversified and profitable company offering access to the widest range of modern, efficient aircraft, together with a broader mix of services and a greater scale and global footprint that will drive significant value for our customers and shareholders.”

The newly merged entity will operate a combined fleet of more than seventy-five aircraft including B757-200(PF)s, B767-200(F)s, and B767-300Fs.