Bank ABC arranges landmark US$600 million Sukuk issuance for Air Lease Corporation (ALC)

Press release
Published March 16th, 2023 - 10:50 GMT
Bank ABC arranges landmark US$600 million Sukuk issuance for Air Lease Corporation (ALC)
Gregory B. Willis.
Bank ABC acted as the Sole Arranger, Structurer and Joint Lead Manager (JLM) & Bookrunner for a US$600 million 5-year Sukuk Issuance by Air Lease Corporation (ALC).

Bank ABC, one of MENA’s leading international Banks, acted as the Sole Arranger, Structurer and Joint Lead Manager (JLM) & Bookrunner for a US$600 million 5-year Sukuk Issuance by Air Lease Corporation (ALC). This issuance marks not only the debut Sukuk from ALC but also the first sukuk issuance by a corporate from North America. The issuance is part of ALC’s funding strategy to diversify its investor base and tap a new pool of liquidity. 

Bank ABC, along with a number of regional and international banks, announced the transaction on 27th February followed by a deal roadshow covering investors in the UAE, Qatar and KSA. As a 144A/Reg S issuance listed on the London Stock Exchange, the Sukuk was open to the global investor community. With the strength of the JLM group, strong market appetite for Sukuks, and investment grade credit, the transaction was 3.5x oversubscribed and was priced successfully on 6th March 2023. 

Commenting on the landmark transaction, Christopher Wilmot, Group Head of Treasury & Financial Markets, Bank ABC: “We are proud to have played a leading role in this historic corporate Sukuk issuance from the US. With ALC’s robust aviation business and solid financial position, the issuance presented an attractive Shari’a compliant investment opportunity for regional investors. We are committed to opening this avenue of funding for our clients in our core US market, enabling them to access a wider pool of liquidity. I would like to thank ALC, and all participating banks, for their trust and confidence in Bank ABC’s Debt Capital Markets & Islamic Finance services and all the teams involved from across the Group in making this transaction a remarkable success.” 

ALC is the second largest aircraft leasing company globally, with total platform scale of over $55 billion across its owned, managed and on order fleet. The company is principally engaged in buying commercial aircraft (from Airbus and Boeing and is considered their largest client) and leasing them to airline businesses in every major geographical region, spanning approximately 115 airlines across 61 countries. In addition, the company supplies fleet management and remarketing services to third parties. 

“We are grateful to the team at Bank ABC for their thought leadership and expertise in executing the first Sukuk offering from a North American corporate borrower. The transaction is a testament to ALC’s commitment to diversification of funds as well as the strong liquidity in the Middle East. We look forward to expanding our funding footprint in this region and believe this transaction is a key step in highlighting the opportunities that exist in this market. The quality and depth of demand for the transaction exceeded our expectations and we are thankful to our banking partners, investors, and advisors for their support in achieving this outcome.” Greg Willis, Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer, Air Lease Corporation.

Bank ABC is a leading global banking player and provides innovative wholesale financial products and services, including Capital Markets, Transaction Banking, Specialized Finance, Islamic Finance, Real Estate Finance and Financial Markets to Corporates and Financial Institutions. It also offers retail banking services through its extensive network of retail branches in Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia, and Algeria and through its digital, mobile-only ila Bank in Bahrain.

Background Information

Bank ABC

Bank ABC (incorporated as Arab Banking Corporation B.S.C) is an international bank headquartered in Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain. Our network spreads across five continents, covering countries in the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, the Americas and Asia. 

Bank ABC, founded in 1980, is listed on the Bahrain Bourse and our major shareholders are the Central Bank of Libya and Kuwait Investment Authority. 

Bank ABC is a leading provider of Trade Finance, Treasury, Project & Structured Finance, Syndications, Corporate & Institutional Banking as well as Islamic Banking services. We are also expanding our retail banking network in the MENA region.

Bank ABC is licensed as a conventional wholesale bank by the Central Bank of Bahrain.

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