rotors up close

WFW advises on first Islamic-structured PDP helicopter financing

25 June 2015

Watson Farley and Williams (“WFW”) has advised Bank of London and The Middle East (“BLME”) and Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking (“Lloyds”) on an innovative Islamic pre-delivery payment (“PDP”) facility for LCI Helicopters (“LCI”). The facility involved a master Murabaha facility from BLME and a conventional facility from Lloyds, with Lloyds acting as mandated lead arranger under both facilities.

The facility is to be used to finance PDP payments for a number of Airbus H175 and H225 helicopters, for which LCI is the launch customer, taking its total fleet to over 90 helicopters both delivered and on order.

The WFW team was led by WFW Dubai senior associate Michael Savva, WFW Global Head of Transport, London partner Rex Rosales and Head of WFW Dubai, partner Andrew Baird.

Michael Savva commented: “We are very pleased to have facilitated this transaction for BLME and Lloyds for one of the principal lessors in the helicopter sector.  Such ground-breaking transactions enable us to further highlight our experience and expertise in the aviation finance and the Islamic finance sectors, both of which are central to our business in the Middle East.”

Rex Rosales added: “The need for investment in the transportation sector is increasing and with this increase, it is important that the market provides innovative structures to finance aircraft cross-border.  WFW is proud to be among the panel of firms advising BLME and Lloyds on transportation finance transactions and is pleased to have acted for the banks on this pre-delivery financing structure for new Airbus Helicopters, which allows LCI to continue to expand its leasing portfolio.”