Avolon: HNA Group's aircraft lessor aims to grow from number three to world number one

Less than eight years after its founding in May-2010 by executives from RBS Aviation Capital, Avolon is the world's third largest lessor ranked by number of aircraft owned, behind the industry giants GECAS and AerCap.

Avolon's relatively young fleet is fairly well diversified by geography, airline customer and aircraft type, but is somewhat weighted towards narrowbodies, Airbus and Asia Pacific. It only has a few airlines with a double-digit number of leased aircraft, but most of these are LCCs.

After being acquired in 2016 by Bohai Leasing Co, part of the HNA Group, Avolon had a busy 2017. The Dublin-based lessor acquired CIT Aerospace in Apr-2017, thereby fulfilling its stated ambition to achieve the number three ranking. In 3Q2017, Avolon completed the acquisition of Hong Kong Aviation Capital (HKAC), buying the shares that it did not already own in the former Bohai subsidiary.

Avolon is the core aircraft leasing brand for Bohai and the HNA Group. In Nov-2017 CEO Dómhnal Slattery said Avolon's new ambition was to be the world's largest lessor.

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