Global Aviation Asset Management (GAAM), an Australian aircraft lessor, has today announced a change to the ownership structure of Global Aviation Holdings Fund (GAHFL) and the appointment of a new Advisory Board, including former Qantas CEO and CFO, Geoff Dixon and Peter Gregg, as well as former Allco Finance Group head, David Coe and investment banker, Mark Carnegie.
The principal investors in the new consortium are Greg Woolley, Geoff Dixon, Peter Gregg, David Coe, Mark Carnegie and John Singleton. Dixon, Gregg, Coe and Carnegie will join GAAM Chairman, Greg Woolley on GAHFL’s Advisory Board.
Mr Woolley stated, “in addition to their obvious expertise, the members of the Advisory Board have experience with airlines, manufacturers and financiers that are second to none on a global basis. GAAM will benefit from this experience and expertise as the business looks to increase its presence in the global aviation finance market".
Under the restructure, the interests of the remaining non-strategic, financial investors (hedge funds Stark Capital and Oasis Capital) have been acquired through the combination of a selective company buyback, further investment by Greg Woolley’s private interests, LJCB Investment Group and a consortium of new investors. The external Manager of GAHFL has been internalised as a result of the sale of GAAM to GAHFL by Greg Woolley.
The new, approximate shareholdings are Woolley interests (20%), LJCB Investment Group and associated interests (70%) and a consortium of new investors (10%). Keybridge Capital’s financing arrangements in relation to a part of LJCB’s holding, held through Judbury Investments, will remain unchanged.
Mr Woolley stated that the GAAM business has performed strongly since it was founded in 2005 and has been "fortunate to have received strong support from its financiers and airline customers".
He stated, "the GAAM management team has done an outstanding job in securing the business’s strong performance during an extremely volatile period in the aviation industry and global financialmarkets generally", adding there has not been a single default in the portfolio since its inception". He stated the portfolio has "very limited releasing and refinancing obligations over the next two years".
He said GAAM saw significant opportunities in the global aircraft financing space and that all opportunities would be carefully considered.
Mr Woolley added, "such strong performance in adverse market conditions augurs particularly well for the performance and growth of the business as market conditions improve".