AirAsia takes out coveted Airline Treasury Team of the Year

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AirAsia has been awarded Airline Treasury Team of the Year at the Asia Pacific Aviation 100 awards.

The Airline Economics Magazine Aviation 100 awards recognise the air travel industry’s most outstanding performers, as well as the most innovative and successful finance and leasing deals closed in the last 12 months.

AirAsia won the Airline Treasury Team of the Year based on the company’s efficient fundraising deals that translated to strong financial performance as well as impressive fleet expansion activities.

In the 2018-2019 year, AirAsia sealed two major aircraft portfolio deals with BBAM and Castlelake LP for a combined US$3.6 billion. The completion of the two transactions involved more than 100 aircraft and proved the team was not only efficient in their fundraising efforts, but also able to design financing structures which were not prevalent in typical aircraft financing transactions.

This year, AirAsia also made global headlines with two significant commitments for new aircraft. At the 2019 Paris International Airshow, the company announced it would upsize its future Airbus single-aisle fleet, by converting orders for 253 Airbus A320neo to the larger Airbus A321neo.

In August 2019, its long-haul affiliate AirAsia X expanded its order book with Airbus by signing a US$5 billion agreement for 12 Airbus A330-900 and 30 A321XLR aircraft.

AirAsia Head of Aircraft Finance Farhan Zainul and Asia Aviation Capital Senior Counsel Aaron Gomez accepted the awards on behalf of AirAsia at a gala ceremony here in Hong Kong last night.

AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes said, “The sale of our aircraft leasing operations was the culmination of a long-running strategy to dispose of our physical assets, and by doing so, we were able to monetise the aircraft at high prices and reduce residual risk. This strategy has allowed us to invest that cash into a fleet expansion program and our many digital ventures, while at the same time provide shareholder returns and accelerate our vision to become Asia Pacific’s leading travel and financial platform company.

“This would not have been possible without my incredible aircraft finance team, and I can’t think of anyone else more deserving to win Airline Treasury Team of the Year.”

The Winners of the Aviation 100 awards were decided on by an industry-wide survey, a rigorous vetting process and editorial considerations.