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Transat Seeks $398 Million as Air Canada Deal Hangs by a Thread

  • Tour operator says it has backup plans as EU approval drags on
  • Government emergency loan is one possibility; talks continue
The Air Transat office stands in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2011.  Tour operator Transat AT Inc. said it’s exploring government loans and even cast doubt on its survival as its purchase by Air Canada is in jeopardy.

The Air Transat office stands in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2011.  Tour operator Transat AT Inc. said it’s exploring government loans and even cast doubt on its survival as its purchase by Air Canada is in jeopardy.

Photographer: Brent Lewin/Bloomberg

Updated on

With its purchase by Air Canada in jeopardy, tour operator Transat AT Inc. said it’s exploring a government emergency loan that could come as early as this month.

Montreal-based Transat said Thursday that it’s looking for at least C$500 million ($398 million) in long-term financing to cover its needs in case the transaction, which is still under European Union review, falls through. One of the options is the government’s Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility, known as LEEFF, which has been used by only one airline as the industry negotiates for a bailout program including cheaper loans.