Indigo Partners buys Frontier Airlines for $145 mln

The agreement ends a two-year-long search by Indianapolis-based Republic to unload Frontier, which it bought out of bankruptcy in 2009 (Full Story).

Phoenix-based Indigo will pay $36 million in cash for the equity of Frontier Holdings and assume Frontier’s debt. (Full Story)

Republic, which provides regional service for bigger carriers such as Delta Air Lines Inc and United Continental Holdings Inc, has been restructuring Frontier over the past year to lower its costs.

Indigo is led by co-founder William Franke, who was chairman of low-cost carrier Spirit Airlines Inc.

“We endorse and will support continued efforts to build Frontier into a leading nationwide ultra-low cost carrier,” Franke said in a statement. “As airline fares continue to move up, passengers need affordable travel alternatives.”

The deal is subject to various approvals and is expected to close in December, Republic said.

Rohit T.K. and Karen Jacobs are reporters for Reuters News