In a US$3.6 billion deal, Saudi Aircraft lessor AviLease has entered into a definitive agreement to purchase the aircraft leasing business of Standard Chartered, which includes Dublin-based Pembroke Group.

As part of the acquisition, AviLease will acquire a portfolio of 100 narrow body aircraft while also becoming the servicer for another 22 aircraft.

The combined platform will own and manage 167 aircraft including 145 owned aircraft valued at around US$6 billion and 22 managed aircraft valued at approximately US$800 million leased to 46 airlines globally.

AviLease, founded in 2022 and headquartered in Riyadh, is wholly owned by the kingdom’s Public Investment Fund (PIF).

The entire transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of this year. As part of the acquisition, AviLease has arranged US$2.1 billion of bridge financing commitments from four banks: BNP Paribas, Citibank, HSBC Bank Middle East and MUFG Bank.

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AviLease chairman, Fahad Al-Saif, said, “The Standard Chartered leasing business is an industry-leading platform combined with a team of high-calibre professionals with an outstanding reputation. This acquisition will propel AviLease and will in turn support Saudi Arabia’s aviation ecosystem, on our path to help realise the Saudi Vision 2030’s objective of diversifying the economy and adding high value employment opportunities for Saudi citizens.”

AviLease CEO, Edward O’Byrne, added, “We are purchasing a very high-quality portfolio of narrow body aircraft on lease to top-tier airlines globally. The transaction accelerates the scale-up and lessee diversification of our fleet, demonstrating our ability to execute on our investment strategy. Equally important is the ability for us to combine forces and leverage the high-quality capabilities of the Standard Chartered platform. We have the ambition to become a top-10 global aircraft lessor and this acquisition brings us one step closer.”

(Image: Supplied by AviLease)