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Maples Group Assists SKY Leasing on Aircraft ABS Transaction

09 Jun 2021

The Maples Group is pleased to have assisted SKY Leasing with its impressive debut aircraft ABS transaction, SLAM 2021-1 ("SLAM"), which closed on 3 June 2021.  

SLAM involved the issuance of US$663 million of asset-backed Notes that will be used to finance the acquisition of a diversified portfolio of 16 Airbus and Boeing aircraft valued at approximately US$885 million. Notably, the portfolio features the youngest average aircraft age for an aircraft ABS ever issued and also includes the highest concentration of next generation narrowbody aircraft for an aircraft ABS, with 10 A321NEO aircraft in the portfolio. 

The Maples Group's law firm, Maples and Calder, provided Cayman Islands and Irish legal advice to SLAM and, in its role as managing agent, the Group provides cash management and calculation services, monthly statements to Noteholders and investors and a full suite of company secretarial and accounting services. The Group also acted as listing agent for the Notes on the Cayman Islands Stock Exchange and provided share trustee and related administration services.

Commenting on the transaction, Donna Ager, Partner and Head of the European Aviation practice group said, "We are delighted to have been able to support SKY Leasing on such a successful transaction, which achieved the lowest all-in yield ever for an aircraft ABS and demonstrates investors' keen interest in securitisations backed by aircraft. The Maples Group's ability to provide the full range of legal, managing agent, listing, fiduciary and administration services from our Cayman Islands, Dublin and Delaware offices on aircraft securitisations is unparalleled and something of which we are very proud." 

The legal team was led by Jonathon Meloy, Partner and co-head of the Cayman Islands Asset Finance practice and Donna Ager, who were assisted by Partner, Anthony Philp and Associates, Ed Rhind, Jonathan Brown, Niall O'Mahony and Karla Macken. 

The Group's fiduciary team comprised Senior Vice Presidents, Julian Dunphy, Paul Griffin and Phillip Hinds. 

Vedder Price acted as legal counsel to SKY Leasing and Clifford Chance acted as legal counsel to the initial purchasers.

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Advising on the laws of the BVI, the Cayman Islands, Ireland, Jersey and Luxembourg, our global Asset Finance team provides expert legal advice on the utilisation of special purpose vehicles in asset financing structures as well as export credit agency supported transactions and commercial bank deals.  

In addition, we specialise in the registration of aircraft and security interests over private aircraft and corporate jets in the Cayman Islands and Luxembourg, as well as the registration of vessels in the BVI, the Cayman Islands and Luxembourg.