EasyJet confirms £200m aircraft sale and leaseback

EasyJet today confirmed the sale and leaseback of six A320neo aircraft for more than £200 million.

The proceeds of the transaction involving the new generation aircraft make up part of an anticipated £500 million-£650 million in funding from sale and leasebacks highlighted in the budget carrier’s May 28 trading update.

The funds will be used to “maximise liquidity and further strengthen easyJet’s financial position”.

The aircraft will be sold to global aircraft leasing firm SMBC Aviation Capital and leased back for terms of between 110 and 122 months.

The airline added: “EasyJet and SMBC Aviation Capital have also identified other unencumbered aircraft in the easyJet fleet and, if easyJet decide to sell these aircraft over the next 18 months, SMBC Aviation Capital will be our preferred partner for the transaction under financial metrics equivalent to those already established in the transaction announced today.”

The net book value of the aircraft, which vary in age from six months to two years, was approximately £141 million.

The deal follows EasyJet and Airbus reaching an agreement on revised delivery dates for 24 aircraft originally due to arrive between 2020 and 2022.

The airline revealed plans this week to raise up to £450 million in additional financing through an issue of shares.

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