Firm Helps Execute $636 Million Aircraft Securitization for Avolon


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Hughes Hubbard represented Wells Fargo Securities LLC as initial purchaser and sole structuring agent in a groundbreaking $636.21 million asset-backed securitization that was sponsored by Dublin-based Avolon Aerospace Leasing Limited.

The deal, which closed on Oct. 16, 2013, is the first aircraft securitization structured through the issuance of notes since 2008. Emerald Aviation Finance Limited, a newly established special purpose company that is an Irish tax resident, issued the notes.

The issuance was comprised of $546 million in Class A-1 and $90.2 million in Class B-1 fixed rate asset-backed notes. Emerald Aviation will use the net proceeds to acquire a portfolio 20 aircraft from Avolon and its affiliates, which aircraft are expected to be leased to 15 lessees based in 14 countries.
 
The securitization also has the benefit of a liquidity facility. BNP Paribas acted as liquidity provider on the transaction, which was rated by Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services and Kroll Bond Rating Agency Inc. Avolon will acquire the junior Class E note issued by Emerald Aviation and will act as servicer to Emerald Aviation.
 
This was Avolon’s inaugural aircraft securitization as well as its initial transaction in the public debt markets. Wells Fargo Securities LLC and BNP Paribas Securities Corp. acted as initial purchasers, and DVB Capital Markets LLC acted as co-manager.
 
Steven I. Chung worked on the transaction with Andrew Fowler, Brian Liu, Jason Kaplan, Valerie Clark, Alastair Macdonald and Chris Fickes. Andrew H. Braiterman, Jim Delaney and Alexander F. Anderson advised on tax and Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) issues