Confirming what has already been decided in 2016, the low-cost Malaysian airline AirAsia sold its leasing unit at the price of $1.18 billion to several firms owned by U.S.-based BBAM. The company is one of the biggest aircraft leasing companies in the world with more than 400 aircraft currently under its management.

The subsidiaries – the Irish company FLY Leasing, the leasing fund Incline B Aviation and the Japanese investment company Nomura Babcock and Brown – will acquire 84 Airbus A320s and 14 engines from Asia Aviation Capital. 79 of the aircraft and the engines will be leased back to AirAsia and affiliates.

FLY and Incline should also get another 48 A320-type planes from AirAsia and place an option of acquiring 50 more. Out of them, ten A320neo and eleven A321neo that still have do be delivered by Airbus between 2019 and 2021.

„This is the perfect outcome to a strategy that we started in 2004 and I’m thrilled at the execution of our long-term vision. We have now divested of most of our non-core assets – assets that are no longer in use – and we are thrilled to be embarking on our new digital strategy, which will build a valuable group of assets“, declared Tony Fernandes, CEO of AirAsia.

The negociations had been going on for two years, with Korea Asset Transport Management and China Everbright being the best bidders until now.