Global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright has advised on five transactions awarded “Deal of the Year” at the Airfinance Journal Awards.
Airfinance Journal is a leading publication covering the global aircraft finance market and the awards celebrate best in class aviation finance deals.
Duncan Batchelor, global head of aviation, commented.
“The aviation sector continues to evolve rapidly and faces a time of great change. We are dedicated to supporting our clients through this period and continue to advise them on their most complex, cross-border matters, many of which set new industry standards.”
George Paterson, partner and head of aviation in Paris, commented:
“These accolades are a testament to the quality of our aviation practice globally, as well as to the commitment and expertise of our clients in the aviation finance sector and in the aviation industry more widely”.
The winning transactions include:
M&A Deal of the Year – MUFG-DVB Bank €4bn M&A
Norton Rose Fulbright advised DVB, the transportation finance division of DZ Bank AG, on the sale of its aviation lending business to Japan’s Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG). Led by Simon Lew, Alan Bainbridge and Andrew Williams.
Editor’s Deal of the Year – Cargolux Airlines Two 747F Jolco Refinancing
Norton Rose Fulbright advised Crédit Agricole CIB in its role as arranger, facility agent, and lender within the framework of a Japanese operating lease with call option (JOLCO) transaction put in place for a Boeing 747-400 freighter aircraft operated by Cargolux Airlines International S.A. (Cargolux). Led by George Paterson.
Guaranteed Financing Deal of the Year – El Al $150m 787-9 AFIC Covered Jolco
Norton Rose Fulbright advised the lender Development Bank of Japan on the AFIC supported financing of one Boeing 787-9. This is was the first combination of the AFIC product with a JOLCO. Led by George Paterson and Sebastien Allain.
Latin America Deal of the Year – Avianca $4.5bn 53-aircraft Lease and Debt Re-Profiling Programme
Norton Rose Fulbright advised the lenders SMBC in New York, Norddeutsche Landesbank in New York, Development Bank of Japan in Tokyo, Bayerische Landesbank in Munich and other banks on the JOLCO financing of 6 used and 1 new Airbus A320 aircraft for Avianca in Colombia and Avianca affiliate TACA in El Salvador, and then subsequently on the restructuring of the financings as part of the debt restructuring plan of Avianca Holdings. The transactions involving the new aircraft were notable for being the first JOLCOs of used aircraft into Colombia, and the restructurings comprised an important part of Avianca Holdings’ restructuring plan and raising of new funding, enabling the airline to continue operating. Led by Duncan Batchelor and Mark Bithell.
Tax Lease Deal of the Year – TAP Portugal $200m French Tax Lease for A330neos
Norton Rose Fulbright acted for the lease arranger and the senior debt provider on the French lease financing combined with a warehousing facility for the financing of two A330neos. The financing involved senior and junior debt. Led by George Paterson.
The firm’s global aviation group provides the all-round, specialist legal service needed by today’s aviation industry. In addition to aircraft transactions, the aviation group’s expertise covers joint ventures, competition issues, airport slot exchanges, aviation regulation and Brexit, disputes, passenger claims and liability issues such as cyber risk. The group holds 11 ‘band 1’ rankings for aviation across leading directories Chambers and Legal 500.