Irish aircraft lessor Aercap reports rise in profit

News comes days after European regulators approved Aercap’s €25bn purchase of rival GE Capital Aviation Services

Aengus Kelly, chief executive of aircraft leasing company AerCap.  Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times

Aengus Kelly, chief executive of aircraft leasing company AerCap. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times


Profits at Irish aircraft lessor Aercap rose 1.6 per cent to $250 million in the three months to June 30th, the company said on Thursday.

The news comes days after European competition regulators unconditionally approved Aercap’s €25 billion purchase of rival GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS).

Aercap reported that net income for the three months to the end of June was $250 million, a 1.6 per cent increase on the €246 million the Dublin-headquartered group earned during the same period in 2020.

Excluding expenses associated with the GECAS deal, Aercap said that net income for the second quarter was $310 million, or $2.39 a-share.

Aengus Kelly, Aercap’s chief executive, described the results as strong.

“The airline industry is witnessing an unprecedented and rapid recovery in air travel in the world’s major markets,” he said.

“For Aercap, this resulted in increased demand for our aircraft and a significant increase in our cash flows.”

New York-listed Aercap buys aircraft from manufacturers including Airbus and Boeing using its own cash combined with debt.

The Irish company leases them to airlines around the world, using the rent to pay off the associated debt and to fund its ongoing business.

Regulatory approvals

Earlier this year the company announced that it was buying rival GECAS in a €25 billion deal to create the biggest business of its kind in the world, with more than 3,200 planes, helicopters and aircraft engines.

The European Commission this week approved the deal unconditionally on the grounds that it would not affect competition in the EU’s aviation leasing market. The deal already has US backing.

At the time that the pair announced the deal, Aercap said it would require approval from around 20 regulators across the globe. However, the EU and US authorities are among the most significant of these.

Mr Kelly said that Aercap continued to make good progress on the regulatory approvals needed to ensure the transaction goes through.

“As the recovery gathers pace, we are even more enthusiastic about the transaction today than we were when we announced it,” he added.

During the second quarter of this year, Aercap signed lease deals for 13 widebody aircraft, which are used mainly for long-haul flights.