BAE Systems announced today an agreement to sell its commercial aircraft lease portfolio and asset-management business to investment affiliates of New York-based Fortress Investment Group for $187 million in cash. Expected to close in the third quarter, the sale remains subject to regulatory approval and “other conditions.”
The business, known as BAE Systems Asset Management, stands as the world’s second largest regional jet lessor by fleet value and the 10th largest aircraft lessor by fleet size. It counts 16 lease customers in 11 countries. The business manages the 151 commercial aircraft owned by BAE Systems included in the sale as well as third-party owned commercial aircraft on behalf of airlines and investors.
The sale does not include the support and engineering activities of BAE Systems Regional Aircraft.
“BAE Systems Regional Aircraft support and engineering businesses will continue to provide the full range of support to the new owner, including continuing airworthiness and engineering service,” said Alan Fraser, managing director of BAE Systems Regional Aircraft. “We are looking forward to continuing our close working relationship with the Asset Management business under its new ownership.”
Founded in 1993 to manage the portfolio of BAe 146/Avro RJ jetliners and the ATP and Jetstream turboprops, BAE Systems Asset Management has concluded more than 1,800 lease, sale and other transactions, worth more than $3.1 billion. Based predominantly in the UK, the business employs about 70 people.