Titan Aviation and Bain Capital unveil $1bn freighter project

By Damian Brett

Aircraft lessor Titan Aviation and Bain Capital Credit will form a joint venture to develop a diversified freighter aircraft leasing portfolio with an anticipated value of approximately $1bn.

Under the joint venture, Bain and Titan have committed to provide $360m and $40m of equity capital, respectively, which may be supplemented with additional commitments over time, to acquire aircraft over the next several years.

Atlas Air Worldwide-owned Titan will also provide aircraft- and lease-management services to the venture.

The long-term joint venture aims to capitalise on demand for cargo aircraft, underpinned by robust e-commerce and express market growth.

Since its inception in 2009, Titan has grown to become the third largest freighter lessor globally by fleet value with over 30 aircraft and book value of over $1.5bn.

“We are delighted to team up with Bain,” said Titan president and chief executive Michael Steen. “Both Bain and Titan share the same vision and investment strategy. Together, we are extremely well-positioned for further opportunities in the growing freighter space.”

Matt Evans, a director at Bain Capital Credit, added: “We have long admired Atlas and Titan as a best-in-class industry leader and are excited to join forces for a constructive and lasting partnership.

“We look forward to supporting the company’s next phase of growth as it continues to leverage its deep relationships within the global airfreight community.”

The Titan fleet includes B777-200F, B767-300F, B757-200F, B737-800F and B737-300F aircraft. Its customers include e-commerce giant Amazon.

BNP Paribas acted as exclusive financial advisor and placement agent to Titan in the transaction, and Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP acted as its legal advisor. Kirkland & Ellis LLP acted as Bain’s legal advisor in the transaction.

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