MIAMI – Aviation investment company Carlyle Aviation has entered an agreement to acquire aircraft leasing company Fly Leasing for US$17.05 per share, totalling a transaction of US$2.36bn.

Fly’s 84 aircraft and seven engines are leased to 37 airlines in 22 countries. The company’s portfolio consists primarily of Boeing 737 NG and Airbus A320 family aircraft.

The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of this year. The deal must be approved by regulators and customary shareholders and meet closing conditions.

Carlyle Aviation Partners, a firm specializing in aviation investments, has a combined $6.1bn in assets under its management, with 246 aircraft owned, managed, or committed to purchase. The firm’s services are employed by 93 airlines in 53 countries.

Photo: Nick Sheeder/Airways

Fly’s Board of Directors ‘Enthusiastically Recommends’ Acquisition

The company’s CEO Colm Barrington expressed significant enthusiasm for the transaction. When speaking on the deal, he said, “This transaction represents strong value for FLY shareholders at a time when airlines are facing an extremely difficult environment and smaller aircraft lessors are disadvantaged in the debt markets.

He continued, “After a thorough review and evaluation of its options, FLY’s Board of Directors enthusiastically recommends this transaction to its shareholders.”

The board approved the agreement and recommended a shareholder approval of the merger documents. “The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021 and is subject to customary closing conditions, including applicable regulatory clearance and the approval of FLY’s shareholders,” the report stated.

Due to the pending merger process, Fly will not host a first quarter earnings call.

Featured Image: Brandon Farris/Airways