SMBC Aviation Capital to acquire Goshawk in a $6.7bn deal
SMBC Aviation Capital, one of the world's leading aircraft leasing companies, has this week announced that it has reached agreement with NWS Holdings Limited and Chow Tai Fook Enterprises Limited to acquire Goshawk Aviation (“Goshawk”), the Dublin-based global aircraft lessor. The transaction valued at $6.7 billion will create the second-largest lessor worldwide in terms of aircraft numbers with total assets of c. $37bn, and the largest to be owned by Japanese interests. As part of the transaction, SMBC Aviation Capital will acquire a portfolio of 176 owned and managed aircraft. The combined business will have a portfolio of 709 owned and managed aircraft and an additional $13bn of orders from Boeing and Airbus comprising exclusively of 261 new technology narrow body aircraft. Aircraft owned by Goshawk that are located in Russia are excluded from this transaction. The combined business will continue to operate as SMBC Aviation Capital and will consist of a single corporate structure incorporated in the Republic of Ireland, with headquarters in Dublin. www.smbc.aero
Jet Aviation extends line maintenance services to FBO in Zurich
Jet Aviation announced last week that it is offering a line maintenance service through its new hangar facility in Zurich. The facility is authorized to perform line maintenance on a range of business aircraft, including Gulfstream series, with immediate effect. Situated at Jet Aviation’s Zurich North FBO, the facility will initially receive approval under an extension of the company’s Basel site authorizations prior to undergoing an audit for Line Maintenance Repair Station approval by the Swiss Federal Office of Civil Aviation (FOCA). Jet Aviation expanded its Zurich operation in June 2021 via the acquisition of the former ExecuJet Zurich FBO facilities. The acquisition added a multifunctional, state of-the-art terminal for passengers and crews, a 2,500 square-meter hangar adjacent to the terminal, a second near-5,000 square-meter arched hangar, and two private ramps to the company’s existing Zurich footprint. The Zurich line maintenance station supports services for a range of business aircraft, including the Gulfstream series. Jet Aviation has appointed AOG Engineer Michael Luethi to manage the station with the support of its global AOG team as required. www.jetaviation.com
Jet fuel prices surpass 100LL for first time in 14+ years
In its nearly 15 years of tracking aviation fuel prices across the United States, GlobalAir.com is seeing the tide turn at FBOs when it comes to some well-established notions. Not only are jet fuel prices hitting a record-high spike, but April 2022 was the first time ever that Jet A prices in the U.S. surpassed 100LL prices. “When you have been in the business aviation industry for as long as we have, you see all kinds of things,” said GlobalAir.com President and CEO Jeffrey Carrithers. “However, this is our first time seeing anything like this.” Since the average retail price of Jet A price hit a three year low of $4.49 in May of 2020, compounded by surplus supply and pandemic-driven airline shutdowns, it has risen 47.2% in the past two years, based on national averages tracked and compiled by GlobalAir.com. www.globalair.com
People: Billy Nolen, new acting FAA Administrator
Billy Nolen was appointed acting FAA Administrator in April 2022. Previously, Nolen served as FAA’s Associate Administrator for Aviation Safety (AVS). The Aviation Safety Organization’s programs are carried out by 7,400 employees located in Washington Headquarters, regional and directorate offices, and 125 field offices throughout the world. The AVS safety purview covers over one million registered aircraft, over one thousand approved manufacturers, over one million active pilots, and over 50,000 flights every day.
Billy has over 33 years of experience in operations and corporate safety, regulatory affairs and flight operations. He started his career as a 767, 757 and MD-80 pilot with American Airlines. His passion for operations and safety led to the role of Manager of the Pilot Aviation Safety Action Program (ASAP). He then became Manager of Flight Safety with responsibility for Accident/Incident Investigations, Flight Operational Quality Assurance, Line Operations Safety Audits, and oversight of the Pilot and Maintenance ASAPs. After American Airlines, Billy served as Senior Vice President of Safety, Security and Operations with Airlines for America. He subsequently served as Executive Manager of Group Safety & Health for the Qantas Group. Billy came to FAA from his position as Vice President of Safety, Security and Quality at WestJet in Calgary, Alberta. Reporting to the CEO, Billy had responsibility for overseeing safety, security and quality across WestJet, Encore and Swoop.
Billy is a graduate of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, where he earned a BS degree in Aviation Management, and has certificates in aviation safety from the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School, U.S. Army Safety Center, and the University of Southern California. He is a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society (FRAeS). www.faa.gov