€8.5bn deal for aircraft hire firm

A Dublin-headquartered aircraft leasing company has signed a deal worth more than €8.5bn.

€8.5bn deal for aircraft hire firm

SMBC Aviation Capital announced that it has placed an order for 115 Airbus aircraft in what constitutes the largest single-aisle aircraft order ever placed by a lessor.

The deal struck by the world’s third-largest aircraft lessor includes the order of 110 A320neo aircraft and five A320ceo, and the option to convert the majority of the aircraft to bigger models if desired.

The order has been made at an opportune time for the company, according to SMBC Aviation Capital chief executive, Peter Barrett.

“This is a landmark order for SMBC Aviation Capital and indeed for the wider aircraft leasing industry. The A320neo programme is progressing well, and we believe that the timing and structure of the order that we have placed will complement the specific needs and requirements of our customer base,” said Mr Barrett.

SMBC Aviation Capital was formed in 2012 when Japan’s Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation acquired Royal Bank of Scotland’s Irish-founded leasing subsidiary, International Aviation Management.

County Clare- born entrepreneur, Dómhnal Slattery sold International Aviation Management to RBS in 2001 for an estimated €36m.

In two separate deals, aircraft lessor Avolon — also founded by Mr Slattery — announced the purchase of 21 aircraft.

The deals to buy six Boeing Dreamliners and 15 Airbus A330neo aircraft were announced by the company on Monday and yesterday respectively.

The Airbus order is worth more than €3bn while the deal with Boeing is valued at €1.1bn.

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