Surf Air agrees $450m aircraft financing facility with Jetstream Aviation Capital


Jetstream Aviation Capital has agreed to finance up to $450m for Surf Air Mobility (SAM) through a customised operating lease and sale structure. The financing will back the planned expansion of SAM’s turboprop fleet.

SAM will have access to this financing facility over the next six years, allowing it buy new and used Cessna Caravans and Pilatus PC-12s. Although, the facility is subject to separate binding sale and purchase agreements for each aircraft and a separate binding lease agreement for each aircraft.

Sudhin Shahani, founder of SAM said: “We believe the customised aircraft leasing structure from Jetstream will provide us a capital efficient way to more rapidly expand our operations at the scale necessary for a future when electrified aircraft unlock the latent demand for convenient, affordable regional travel on new routes across the US.”

“Jetstream’s proven record of leasing aircraft in this asset class at scale, especially for the Cessna Grand Caravan, will help strengthen SAM’s position in the regional mobility and turboprop category,” added Shahani.

Jetstream also plans to purchase up to 250 hybrid and fully-electric powertrains from SAM over the next five years. Each powertrain is expected to create one-time revenue at sale and multi-year recurring revenue streams though operator usage.

SAM’s immediate focus will be on scaling operations using the Cessna Grand Caravan, which will be the first aircraft to be electrified using its hybrid electric powertrains. The company is targeting commercial certification by 2025.

Stuart Klaskin, chief executive officer, Jetstream Aviation Capital said: “We believe the regional turboprop asset category is positioned for significant growth over the next decade as electrified aircraft enter into operations. With electrified commercial aviation around the corner, we’re looking forward to lending our expertise in this growth segment of the aircraft market.”

Jetstream also has  relationships with Southern Airways Express and Mokulele Airlines, two companies who have entered into an agreement to be acquired by SAM, subject to closing conditions and regulatory approval.