AIG to Protect ILFC Deposit Right If Deal Fails, CFO Says

American International Group Inc., the insurer that struck a deal to sell a plane lessor for $4.2 billion, said it plans to “protect our rights” to the 10 percent deposit it received if the would-be buyers fail to complete the transaction.

“It is not a break-up fee,” AIG Chief Financial Officer David Herzog said today in a conference call discussing second-quarter results at the New York-based company. “We’ll pursue our rights under the terms of the contract.”

A group of Chinese investors has missed three deadlines, the most recent one this week, to complete the purchase of Los Angeles-based International Lease Finance Corp. AIG Chief Executive Officer Robert Benmosche said he can’t be sure if the deal will be completed and is prepared to dispose of the unit in an initial public offering as an alternative.

“We’re continuing to negotiate with the consortium, and keep in mind we don’t have a buyer but we have a group that is buying ILFC, and so this is a very complicated transaction,” Benmosche said on the call. “If they can come together and the money comes in, then we will proceed. If not, we are preparing ourselves for later this year for an IPO.”

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