Lease Corporation International sets up new division


LCI sets up new helicopter division and signs agreement for new generation of AgustaWestland helicopters

Lease Corporation InternationalLease Corporation
International (LCI) and AgustaWestland have signed
an agreement covering the purchase of a fleet of AW139, AW169 and AW189
helicopters for a new division being set up by the lessor. The related
contract, which also includes options, is valued in excess of $400 million.
Building on its successful growth in the narrow and wide-body fixed-wing
leasing market, LCI’s new helicopter division plans to offer helicopter
operators an attractive alternative to buying and financing the purchase of
rotary wing aircraft. LCI expects to be active in a number of markets including
offshore oil and gas, Search & Rescue and aero-medical transport.

Crispin Maunder, executive chairman,
LCI, said after the signing: “Today’s
announcement is the culmination of careful analysis and observation of this
sector. As a dynamic lessor we are confident that now is the time to make this
move given the high level of unfulfilled demand for new generation helicopters,
which the innovative, market-leading AgustaWestland
helicopters are well placed to meet.”

Emilio Dalmasso, senior vice president Commercial Business, AgustaWestland
added: “We are delighted to have signed this
agreement with LCI for AW139, AW169 and AW189 helicopters. LCI maintains one of
the world’s most modern fleets of commercial aircraft and the AgustaWestland range of high performance helicopters fits
well with LCI’s successful market strategy to offer its clients the latest in
efficient and productive aircraft.”

LCI will benefit from the
commonality in design across the AW139, AW169 and AW189 family of new
generation helicopters, due for delivery over the next five years. As well as
possessing the same high performance flight characteristics and safety features
the helicopters share a common cockpit layout, design philosophy and
maintenance concepts that will allow more effective operations for customers
operating helicopter fleets from 4 to 8.5 tonnes.