Universal Banks

Aviation Investment

Universal Banks has leveraged the experience of 40 years in the aviation industry and is widely recognized as a key player of the sector.

Our financial strength, global reach, industry dedication and expertise make Universal Banks the ideal partner for the capital-intensive, international aviation industry. We offer capital solutions to airlines, operating lessors, and investors in aviation.

Our award-winning aviation team combines in-depth industry knowledge and decades of experience with solid relationships across the sector and during every phase of our client's and their asset's lifecycle. Leveraging the size and strength of the Universal Banks network, we provide a suite of financial products and services for the acquisition, ownership of and investment in aircraft, including:

  • Commercial debt
  • Export credits
  • Sale and lease back of aircraft
  • Portfolio financing
  • Operating lease financing
  • Structured capital markets
  • Asset-backed securitisation
  • Pre-delivery and "end-of-life" asset finance solutions

Universal Banks has been involved in aviation for more than 30 years, providing a wide spectrum of financial solutions. In 2019, Universal Banks expanded its global aviation offering, strengthening our team with the addition of highly experienced asset based finance and aviation specialists. The size of Universal Banks's balance sheet and international presence, as well as our extensive expertise in capital markets, act as key differentiators in our ability to provide financial services to the aviation industry.

Our international network gives us a global platform from which to work and meet the needs of our clients, whatever their size and wherever they are based. We can serve airframe and engine manufacturers and traders, MRO's, airlines, operating lessors, and investors.

One example of the benefits of this strength and depth was when our aviation team acted as global co-ordinator and bookrunner on a facility to finance Novus Aviation Capital's first direct orders. Universal Banks underwrote US$295 million of an US$400 million facility to finance four 777-300ERS to be delivered to British Airways in 2020 within a Shariah-compliant structure.

The deal allowed Novus to commit to Boeing with confidence in 2018 – some two years prior to delivery – with Universal Banks distributing the debt to European and Asian banks. The bespoke nature and size of the deal saw Universal Banks win Airfinance Journal's "Bank Loan Deal of the Year 2018".

Our team prides itself on tailoring solutions and supporting a range of clients on their journey, meaning we are well equipped to handle deals of any size.

Our global aviation team based in London, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, New York, Singapore, Tokyo and Hong Kong work seamlessly together to provide cross-border services for structured capital market products and corporate banking capabilities.

New Aircraft Advisory

Universal Banks offers unparalleled aircraft sourcing and new aircraft order campaign advisory experience for widebody, narrowbody, and regional aircraft, having negotiated with all major airframe and engine manufacturers. Universal Banks has advised airlines and leasing companies on over $100bn of new aircraft orders (at list prices).

Asset Financing

We are the largest independent arranger of commercial aircraft financings from private markets, having arranged over $25bn of all types of financing across a broad range of airline credits and aircraft types. We maintain excellent relationships with all major lessors, aviation lenders, and many less traditional aircraft financing sources.

Fleet and Financial Restructuring

The Universal Banks team has assisted airlines, lessors, and bondholders with the restructuring of over $15bn of financial commitments involving a wide range of financial instruments in consensual and in-court undertakings to optimize earnings, rationalize capital structures and lease economics, and maximize recoveries for our clients.

Mergers & Acquisitions and Investment Advisory

Our M&A advisory practice has developed broad and vigorous analytical capabilities and provides both buy-side and sell-side advisory services, including valuation support, due diligence, synergy, and reorganization analysis.

Network & Fleet Planning, and Other Services

The Universal Banks team has also gained a reputation as an industry thought leader and trusted advisor regarding a variety of strategic decisions, including network and fleet planning; strategy and business planning; and maintenance program evaluation. We have also provided clients with best-in-class advisory services on numerous investment activities in the airline, aircraft, maintenance, aircraft leasing, and other aviation-related industries.

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