Verona, WI — April 11, 2019 — Contrail Aviation Support, LLC (www.contrail.com), a commercial aircraft trading, leasing and parts solutions provider worldwide since 2000 focused on creative asset management strategies that maximize value, today reported the Company successfully completed a record 26 key asset transactions during FY 2019 ended March 31, spanning acquisitions, leases, and sales of commercial aircraft and jet engine parts. Total annual sales dollar volume not disclosed. Contrail is a business unit of AIR T, INC., a diversified holding company (NASDAQ: AIRT – www.airt.net) that is organized as a portfolio of powerful business and financial assets.
Contrail Aviation Support was founded in 2000 by CEO Joe Kuhn as an engine material trading company, primarily focused on used serviceable material from JT8D and CFM56-3 engines. Contrail has since expanded into the most prevalent engine types, powering the 737NG & A320 family. In addition, Contrail has diversified into commercial aviation asset trading and leasing with a primary focus on mid-life to older commercial aircraft and engines that include speculative purchases of “naked” assets, sale and lease-back, and stub lease with no limitations on term length. Contrail has completed over 170 marquee transactions since its inception.
FY 2019 (ENDED 3/31) KEY ASSET TRANSACTION ACTIVITY
8 Key Acquisitions
Two A319-100 aircraft subject to lease. Contrail acquired two A319-100 aircraft powered by V2500-A5 engines subject to stub-lease from a major global lessor. The remaining lease term has been optimized to create an end-of-life scenario at lease expiry, which will result in a mix of part-out and follow-on lease engines for the Company’s parts business and lease portfolio.
Two 737-700 aircraft. Contrail acquired two 737-700 aircraft, each equipped with two CFM56-7B22 engines from a major global lessor. The airframes were torn down by JetYard, and the airframe material was subsequently sold by AirCo (both sister companies of Contrail who are also business units of AIR T, INC.). All engines were delivered in serviceable condition.
One A320-200 aircraft. Contrail acquired one A320-200 aircraft equipped with a V2500-A5 engine from a major US-based private equity fund. The airframe was sold, and one of the engines will be leased to an existing airline customer in Asia.
Two CFM56-7B22 engines. Contrail acquired two run-out CFM56-7B engines from an aircraft and engine asset specialist. The dismantled components will support the growth of Contrail’s surplus engine parts line of business.
One CFM56-3C1 engine. Contrail acquired one run-out CFM56-3C1 engine from a European engine specialist company. The engine will be dismantled and the material will be used to support our customers.
6 Key Leases (Added to the Portfolio)
Three CFM56-7B26 engines. Contrail leased two engines to a major global MRO and one engine to a prominent European airline.
One CFM56-5B1 engine. Contrail leased the engine to a major carrier in Latin America.
Two A319-100 aircraft. Contrail added two A319-100 aircraft powered by V2500-A5 engines subject to stub-lease with an Asian carrier.
12 Key Sales
Eight CFM56-7B22 engines. Contrail sold three engines to a boutique aviation investor, one engine to a global engine leasing and trading company, one engine to a European based aircraft and engine asset specialist and three engines to a US-based private equity fund.
One CFM56-7B26 engine. Contrail sold the engine subject to lease to a major US-based aviation company.
Two 737-700 airframes. Contrail sold the airframes to AirCo.
One A320-200 airframe. Contrail sold the airframe to a US-based airframe parts company.
Contrail’s CEO Joe Kuhn, said: “Despite a competitive market environment in FY’19, we were able to overcome these headwinds and successfully complete 26 key, profitable transactions. Going forward, we are well-positioned, well-capitalized, and have developed a strong pipeline of assets that will continue to feed our trading and parts business throughout the upcoming year.”
Added Steve Williamson, Contrail’s Director of Acquisitions: “We continued to demonstrate to the industry our innovative ability to execute complex transactions swiftly while navigating difficult jurisdictions around the globe. Looking ahead, Contrail looks to grow organically and build out its portfolio through acquisitions of aircraft assets subject to lease that maximize value for our strategic customer and counterparties.”