Geneva, Switzerland — Today at the European Business Aviation Convention, business aviation leader XOJET announced financing agreements for up to $2.46 billion to fund its North American operations and global expansion strategy. This marks the largest publicly-announced business aircraft financing package in history.
XOJET also announced the proposed launch of a separate joint venture with investment company Tasameem Real Estate Company, LLC (Tasameem) to be headquartered in the United Arab Emirates’ capital city of Abu Dhabi.
The equity financing round was advised by Morgan Stanley.
Multiple investors participated in debt and equity financings including global investors
Tasameem, veteran aviation investor TPG, Export Development Canada (EDC), White Oak Global Advisors, LLC and XOJET founder Paul Touw.
The strength of these financings reflects the high degree of confidence that XOJET’s investors have in the company’s U.S. management, proven business performance and in the growing demand for business aviation services.
$964 million in immediate financing will be made available to XOJET, which has already secured more than $500 million in previous funding.
The remaining $1.5 billion in additional financing will be made available upon launch of the planned joint venture with Tasameem, which is expected to occur later this year.
XOJET currently has 127 aircraft and aircraft orders valued at more than $3.1 billion.
XOJET’s global expansion strategy seeks to capitalize on the escalating worldwide demand for business jet travel.
The joint venture with Tasameem in Abu Dhabi will leverage XOJET’s innovative operating model, stringent safety standards, and comprehensive operating experience to bring the company’s unique value proposition to customers traveling to, from, and within the Gulf Cooperation Council countries and the greater Middle East region.
This comprehensive financing package will also enable XOJET to be the first large-scale business jet operator to fund the vast majority of its own fleet.
Traditional models of business aviation have customarily required the customer to fund the aircraft, or a fraction of the aircraft.
With this comprehensive financing package, XOJET expects to self-finance its aircraft, removing this burden from its customers and expanding the breadth of its product offerings.
“The dynamics of a constrained commercial aviation system combined with the rapid rise of business opportunities in a global economy are driving historic growth in business aviation ,” said Paul Touw , CEO of XOJET.
“In an increasingly diversified and worldwide marketplace, business jets are becoming one of the most important tools for corporate competitive advantage.”
With commercial airline service under strain, business jet travel is growing at an unprecedented rate.
In the United States, the FAA March 2008 forecast predicted average flight growth of 12.2 percent annually through 2010.
The overseas business jet market is growing even more rapidly, with aircraft manufacturers predicting that more than 50 percent of aircraft demand will come from outside of North America, according to the annual Honeywell Business Jet Forecast.
“XOJET’s business model is changing the industry as it continues to outperform our expectations,” said David Bonderman, founding partner of TPG.
“We are excited to continue to fund the company’s growth as it has assembled a world-class management team that continues to execute aggressively and successfully.”
“This significant financing series has created one of the strongest balance sheets in the industry ,” said Eilif Serck-Hanssen, XOJET’s CFO and president of international operations.
“Given today’s credit markets, the magnitude and size of these agreements suggests there is always capital for great ideas and growth markets.”
XOJET, Inc. is a leading provider of global business aviation services on an all-new fleet of business jets.
XOJET launched its service in January 2006 and has quickly established itself as one of the fastest-growing business aviation companies on record. The company, which is based in San Carlos, California, has built a fleet that will reach 127 aircraft worth US$3.1 billion by 2012.
Most recently, XOJET has been recognized with a number of honors including being named an Aviation Research Group/ U.S. “Model Program” for its commitment to safety, an Inc. Magazine “Fastest Growing Company”, and a Robb Report “Best of Private Aviation” winner. For more information, visit www.xojet.com.