Business Aviation

KKR Introduces AV AirFinance, A New Commercial Aviation Lending Platform

KKR, a global investment firm, announced AV AirFinance Limited, a global commercial aviation loan servicer founded by a team of seasoned industry professionals in collaboration with KKR. The new secured loan servicing platform includes stable, long-term capital with decades of experience structuring commercial aircraft loan transactions to provide unique and innovative financing options to commercial aviation clients worldwide.

KKR and AV AirFinance have agreed to buy a nearly $800 million portfolio of aviation loans from CIT Group to assist with the launch, which includes more than 50 loans for around 60 commercial aircraft. These loans in the portfolio have an average yield in the mid-single digits and a remaining duration of four years.

Chief Executive Officer Siggi Kristinsson leads AV AirFinance. He is an industry veteran who most recently co-founded and served as CEO of Volito Aviation Services AB. This firm provides debt origination and consulting services to Goldman Sachs and other financial institutions. Mr. Kristinsson is assisted by a seasoned team of aviation financing experts with decades of expertise in secured lending totaling more than $25 billion in value through many market cycles. Ryan Jasinski joins AV AirFinance from CIT as part of the associated portfolio acquisition and will continue to focus on loan origination in the Americas. Per Waldelof, former president of PK AirFinance, works as a consultant for AV AirFinance, assisting loan origination and other elements of the company's operations.

AV AirFinance will provide services to diverse commercial clients, including airlines, cargo operators, lessors, manufacturers, and investors, throughout the ownership cycle, including PDP, acquisition, leasing, conversion, and tear down. AV AirFinance offers worldwide origination skills and the financial capability to arrange longer-term, flexible, and competitive financing for a wide variety of single aircraft and extensive portfolio deals through its partnership with KKR.

Separate accounts controlled by KKR are funding the portfolio acquisition from CIT. AV AirFinance is KKR's latest aviation investment, following previous Altitude Aviation, Altavair, KKR DVB Aviation Capital, K2 Aviation, DCAL Aviation, Wheels Up, Global Jet Capital, and JetEdge.

About KKR
KKR is a global investment firm that specializes in alternative asset management, capital markets, and insurance solutions. KKR seeks to achieve excellent investment returns by using a patient and disciplined approach to investing, employing world-class people, and fostering growth in its portfolio businesses and communities. KKR manages hedge funds and sponsors investment funds in private equity, credit, and real estate. The Global Atlantic Financial Group operates KKR's insurance companies, including retirement, life, and reinsurance products. References to KKR's investments might consist of the activities of its sponsored funds and insurance subsidiaries.

About AV AirFinance Limited
AV AirFinance Limited is a commercial aviation loan servicer founded in collaboration with KKR. Airlines, lessors, manufacturers, and investors can all benefit from AV AirFinance's secured financing solutions. AV AirFinance's team has decades of expertise structuring commercial aircraft loans. Due to its partnership with KKR, it has the financial strength and capacity to provide competitive financing and the knowledge to engage in the worldwide commercial aviation lending space effectively. AV AirFinance has offices in Ireland and the United States.

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Aerospace, MRO, Cargo Management

TAT Technologies signs another 5-year contract with an international air carrier for APU MRO services with estimated total revenues of $10 million

PR Newswire | January 16, 2024

TAT Technologies Ltd. a leading supplier of products and services for the commercial and military aviation industries and the ground defense industries, announces a new contract with an international air carrier. This contract is a result of a very successful partnership between the companies over the last several years which led the parties to sign a global fleet contract. As part of this contract, TAT will provide MRO services to the airline's GTCP331 model APUs. TAT estimates total revenues from this contract to be $10 million ($2 million per year). By signing this contract, we further advanced our dominating position as the leading APU 331-200 MRO in the market serving the widely utilized B757/767 fleet by providing APU 331-200 repairs with a reputation for quality and on time delivery to this important market. In 2020 and 2021, TAT (through its fully owned subsidiary, Piedmont Aviation Components based in Greensboro North Carolina) signed multiple strategic contracts with the Fortune 100 multi-national aerospace company Honeywell. Under these contracts, TAT was awarded a 10-year license for repair and overhaul of APUs for Boeing and Airbus's key platforms, including B737, B777, B767/757 and A320 aircraft as well as the C17 which is used for military purposes. The Company is also a global provider for APUs leases to airlines across multiple commercial platforms with an additional exclusive 10 yr. agreement for the B777 aircraft, with Honeywell. Piedmont has completed its facility upgrades required to commence MRO operations for the GTCP331-500 (B777) and GTCP131-9 (A320/B737). Igal Zamir, CEO of TAT stated: "We are very pleased with this contract, which comes after several years of very fruitful relationship. By signing this contract, we established our domination in the commercial segment of MRO for the APU331-200.

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Aerospace, Defense and Space, Aviation Technology

Liberty Defense Announces First Sale of HEXWAVE to an International Airport in Asia Pacific

Newswire | January 22, 2024

Liberty Defense Holdings Ltd. a leading technology provider of Artificial Intelligence (AI) based next generation detection solutions for protecting secure locations against prohibited weapons and other threats, is pleased to announce that the HEXWAVE™ system will be deployed at an international airport in the Philippines. The sale was made by the Company's international distributor and deployment is scheduled for summer of 2024. The screening will be at the forecourt of the airport to screen people entering the terminal. Liberty's HEXWAVE product, a next generation, walkthrough, contactless threat detection system for concealed metallic and non-metallic objects, uses AI to provide automated decisions to security operators to process people at speed. The company started shipping HEXWAVE to customers in September 2023 and the backlog of systems has grown to over 30 systems. "We continue to see an increase in demand from airports on a global basis for enhanced screening at various checkpoints and entrances," said Bill Frain, CEO of Liberty Defense. "In addition to screening for aviation workers, airports are taking advantage of HEXWAVE's mobility and scanning individuals as they enter the terminal as part of an added and layered security approach." For updates and news, please visit the Company website to subscribe to email alerts or follow Liberty Defense on social channels.

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Aerospace, Aviation Technology

WestJet adding to fleet in 2025 through leasing of five new Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft

Newswire | January 24, 2024

WestJet today announced the acquisition of five brand new Boeing 737 MAX 8 to its fleet, adding to the airline's already significant multi-billion-dollar investment in its orderbook. The airline expects to receive delivery of the aircraft in early 2025, after recently completing leasing agreements with China Development Bank Financial Leasing Co., Ltd. (CDB Aviation) for three aircraft and international aircraft leasing company, Avolon for two aircraft. "We are adding these five aircraft to our 737 MAX family very soon and look forward to this additional capacity enhancing our already forecasted fleet expansion, further enabling our execution of providing affordable and diverse air travel options for our guests," said Mike Scott, WestJet Group, Executive Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer. "As Canada's coast-to-coast leisure champion and western home carrier, the continued expansion of our fleet in tandem with our low-cost foundation is a key accelerator of our growth strategy. Combined with its existing order book, WestJet will now receive as many as 22 brand new Boeing 737 MAX airplanes before the end of 2025, and up to 62 additional airplanes of this type before the end of 2028. This makes WestJet's narrowbody orderbook the largest of any Canadian airline. "CDB Aviation values our expanding relationship with WestJet and we are pleased to be able to support the airline's fleet expansion in an environmentally friendly manner as we lease these three new fuel-efficient B737-8 aircraft direct from our orderbook," stated Jie Chen, CDB Aviation's Chief Executive Officer. "We're delighted to be expanding on our strong relationship with Westjet and are pleased to support WestJet's fleet expansion needs from our Boeing orderbook," said Paul Geaney, President and Chief Commercial Officer, Avolon. "We expect to see continued growth for the aviation sector in the coming years, including in North America, and are excited to provide a fleet solution to a strategic customer in the region."

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Aerospace, Defense and Space, Aviation Technology

AAR signs new multi-year military distribution agreement with Ontic

AAR | January 05, 2024

AAR CORP. a leading provider of aviation services to commercial and government operators, MROs, and OEMs, has announced a new multi-year agreement with Ontic, providing AAR distribution rights to supply a strategic selection of military products to the U.S. government, with exclusivity on specified parts. AAR currently provides military distribution support to Ontic's Cheltenham, United Kingdom, facility and commercial distribution support to Ontic's Creedmoor, North Carolina, facility. Under this additional contract, AAR will support Ontic's Chatsworth, California, facility. Ontic is pleased to deepen our partnership with AAR through this new agreement. AAR's support adds efficiencies to our processes that allow us to best support our wide range of customers," said Terry Streb, General Manager of Ontic's Chatsworth facility. "AAR enables us to reduce turnaround times and improve product availability for our shared U.S. government customers. AAR is enthusiastic about bolstering our strategic military portfolio by expanding our Ontic relationship to include the Chatsworth facility," said Ross Wuestenfeld, Vice President of AAR's Distribution – Defense. "Ontic is a trusted provider of parts and services to the aviation aftermarket, and we look forward to enhancing these services to support the U.S. warfighter.

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