Record order books for new aircraft, coupled with second tier operation aircraft becoming harder to finance through conventional debt structures, has created a wave of opportunity for purchasing quality retired aircraft and engines. In addition, global competition amongst airlines has compressed profit margins. Airlines are focused in working with suppliers with a high level of technical expertise who can not only reduce aircraft maintenance spend but can provide pertinent specialised advice to maximise product performance, enhance asset residual values and give enhanced predictability of maintenance spend.

Our main challenges when starting the business

Despite having a seasoned management team of aviation professionals backed with a track record of success, the business still suffered the same growing pains of any start up business with no traceable history. To begin with, it couldn’t get credit for mobile phone contracts and foreign currency payments over a certain value had to be transacted over the counter at the bank. Whilst harbouring ambitious growth plans, the business has adopted a sensible growth strategy aimed at producing sustainable revenues, high quality services and financial stability for the company. In the early days, this required selective attention to the projects that it could take on.

Success Factor

Benefiting from a strong regional presence in the aviation sector, AerFin has been able to recruit high quality aviation professionals to provide a consistently excellent service for customers. The challenges of working in a fast moving, and global market space have allowed the business to benefit from excellent staff retention levels, which is paramount to the success of the business. In 2013, AerFin benefitted from support through the Welsh Government, who backed its relocation programme. The support offered allowed the refurbishment of the former General Electric Aero Engine Services facility at Parc Bedwas and the creation of 10 high quality jobs that were instrumental to the growth of the business. Finally, in December 2014 the company benefitted from investment made by CarVal Investors who acquired a major stake in the business. The continued backing of the majority shareholder has allowed the business to extend its service offering and enhance the platform to become capable of handling higher transaction volumes without detracting from the quality of supply. This includes the opening of a 24/7 aircraft on-ground support facility near Gatwick Airport.

The Future

With strong access to capital for new product line investment and a fast-growing brand reputation, the business is well placed for significant growth over the next five years. Major aims for the company are to continue to position itself as a key strategic partner to airline operators across the globe, through continuing to provide hourly, cost-saving, contractual support programmes. The company will also increase its market presence in Asia-Pacific, the Middle East and the Americas through delegating more resources to the regions, providing a greater global reach. AerFin are also looking to increase the range of service capabilities that it can offer operators, as well as exploring other potential product lines that it can support in the market. Finally, it will improve product offering, expanding from its core focus on civil narrow-body and wide-body into regional jets.