Civil Helicopters News

Macquarie Acquires 12 Helicopters from Milestone

Macquarie Acquires 12 Helicopters from Milestone

Milestone Aviation sold 12 helicopters from its leased portfolio to Macquarie Rotorcraft, in a sign that the helicopter leasing sector is maturing and seeing strong liquidity.

The sizeable deal includes a mix of Sikorsky S-92, Airbus H135, Bell 412, and Leonardo AW109, AW139 and AW189 helicopters that carry out various missions including offshore energy, EMS, and police services. The helicopters are on lease to six customers in nine countries across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Southeast Asia.

The helicopter leasing market faces unique challenges that differ from the fixed-wing market due to its smaller transaction scale and offshore market. During the COVID-19 pandemic, leasing companies delayed lease rentals and repossessed helicopters. Plummeting oil prices have also resulted in fewer contract renewals as well as order cancellations.

“Unlike the fixed-wing market, portfolio sales have not been as prevalent in helicopter leasing. This transaction between the two leading owners of leased rotorcraft, is another example of the growing maturity of the helicopter leasing sector and reinforces the strong liquidity that we are seeing,” said Pat Sheedy, CEO, Milestone Aviation.

Milestone closed 150 transactions and grew its customer base to more than 50 clients in over 40 countries worldwide in 2022.

“We are excited to partner with Milestone on this important transaction. Acquiring these assets expands our ability to meet the growing needs of our customers and demonstrates the increasing sophistication of the helicopter finance market,” said John Petkovic, CEO, Macquarie Rotorcraft.

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