Aercap loses €1.5bn in first half as aircraft leases to Russia terminated

Aircraft leasing giant sees profit boost in last three months due to soaring demand for air travel post-Covid

Airlines’ struggle to keep up with surging post-Covid demand for travel boosted Irish aircraft leasing giant Aercap’s finances in the three months to the end of June.

Terminated Russian aircraft and engine leases left Aercap with a $1.66 billion (€1.55 billion) loss in the first six months of the year, the Irish group said on Thursday.

However, its results show that the business earned $340 million profit in the three months ended June 30th.

Aercap chief executive Aengus Kelly described the second quarter as strong, with activity up in all of its businesses.

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“The ongoing recovery in air travel continued to strengthen across all major regions, and was manifested in high levels of cash collections and greater utilisation of our fleet during the quarter,” he said.

“The strength in passenger demand, coupled with supply constraints across the industry, is resulting in a favourable leasing environment.”

Most airlines and airports across Europe and the US were unprepared for the strong rebound in demand for travel that followed almost two years of pandemic restrictions.

Aercap terminated agreements on 113 aircraft and 11 engines leased to Russian airlines to comply with sanctions imposed following the country’s invasion of Ukraine in February, hitting its earnings in the first three months of the year.

The Irish group’s figures show that it leased 125 aircraft in the second quarter, which ended on June 30th. It also bought 16 aircraft and sold 43 others during that period.

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O’Halloran covers energy, construction, insolvency, and gaming and betting, among other areas