NAFA

  • NAFA Administrator posted an article
    Sounding Board: Five Minutes With Shawn Vick, Global Jet Capital Chairman, CEO see more

    NAFA member, Shawn Vick, Chairman and CEO of Global Jet Capital, discusses business aviation.

    Shawn Vick is the chairman and CEO of Global Jet Capital, which helps corporations and individuals with the leasing and financing of new and pre- owned business jets. Vick has held leadership positions at British Aerospace, Gulfstream Aerospace, Bombardier, Landmark Aviation and Hawker Beechcraft. He is also a partner and member of the investment committee for AE Industrial Partners, a private equity firm. And he is a private pilot.

    Q. At the National Business Aviation Association Convention & Exhibition in October, Global Jet Capital had been having a banner year with an increase in the leasing and financing of business aircraft. Things changed suddenly with the COVID-19 pandemic. What is happening in the pre-owned market today?

    A. Leading up to March the pre-owned market–frankly the entire transaction market, new or pre-owned–was performing well when compared to the same period last year. Activity began to slow late in the first quarter as the virus took hold and demanded everyone’s attention. I think the beginning of this story is now well understood. Global reaction to the virus resulted in a fundamental shutdown of the world’s economies and business aviation was no different. As we sit here today, in the middle of May, flight activity is beginning to pick up–which is a very good sign. Transaction activity remains slow but has not ceased, and we feel there are a lot of owners and operators sitting tight right now waiting to see how this situation evolves. Despite the uncertainty, one thing is very clear–business aviation in the context of a global pandemic will be the most desired form of transportation as the world begins to get back to work.

    Q. What is your focus now?

    A. Since the beginning of this crisis, we’ve been primarily focused on the health and well-being of our employees. This began in February with the shutdown of our Hong Kong office and a full review of our disaster recovery plan, which includes a chapter on managing the business remotely. Since that time our Zurich, Danbury, [Connecticut]; Boca Raton, [Florida]; and Mexico City offices closed, and we have all been working remotely. While it’s been far from ideal, with the support of our video conferencing platform it’s been surprisingly efficient. We’ve also been using this “pause” in industry activity to focus attention on internal operating efficiency projects, including the transition to a new operating platform and commercial excellence initiatives. With respect to our current portfolio, we’ve naturally been paying very close attention and I’m happy to report the portfolio is performing very well. From a new business perspective, we entered 2020 with a very healthy backlog fueled by a new predelivery payment financing product we launched last year. As the crisis took hold, we managed to close several deals that were in late stages, and we are currently working with a number of clients on lease renewals and extensions. Moving forward, we are now beginning to explore reopening offices and getting our employees back to work in the safest way possible and in line with local government guidelines.

    Q. What do you see for business aviation in the near term?

    A. I think the answer to that question lies in the duration and severity of the financial disruption, and I’m not sure anyone has a crystal ball right now. But if the disruption is limited and we are heading in the right direction in the July/August time frame, with the economy beginning to rebound and the unemployment rate falling, I think that bodes well for our industry. These aircraft are as precious as they’ve ever been, particularly when one’s safety and security are a priority and you factor in social distancing. I think the bottom line is quite simple: If you can afford these assets, you’re going to keep these assets–and if you don’t have one and you can afford one, you’re likely going to acquire one.

    Q. What about aircraft values?

    A. I really think it’s too soon to say, but there is data we can look at for guidance, likely the most important of which comes from the OEM production environment. Most industry analysts are predicting a drop in new deliveries in the 30% range, meaning roughly 450 deliveries this year versus the original projections that were well above 700. And, it’s important to note, these are supply side forecasts at this stage–not demand side. As difficult as this is for the entire ecosystem, it may well act as a guardrail against significant devaluation. Also, we are not seeing a rash of distressed sales or a spike in new aircraft being listed for sale. In fact, these numbers have been coming down in recent weeks. Our sense is that owners and operators understand the value of these assets in this new context and are sitting tight as the situation unfolds.

    Q. How does this downturn compare to the recession of 2008 and 2009?

    A. It’s interesting that so much of the speculation is based on comparisons with 2008, when there is not much correlation. In 2008 the cause of the economic disruption was widespread failures in the banking systems that put the capital markets in a state of seizure. Right now, we’re dealing with the impact of a global pandemic. In comparison to 2008, government reaction and intervention has been swift and expansive. From an industry perspective, OEM production has been curtailed in a disciplined fashion to protect people–but the by-product is protection of backlogs and ultimately aircraft values. This is clearly a different environment.

    Q. What about the health of the business aircraft manufacturers?

    A. If you look at the impact of the Great Recession, several of the manufacturers got caught between a rock and a hard place with an almost instantaneous shutdown of market demand coupled with long supply chain agreements that were difficult to contractually modify. They really had no choice but to drive new product into a down market. Today, as a result of those lessons learned, the OEMs and the entire supply chain is far more agile. At this stage, this is a supply side problem resulting from shutdowns and furloughs across the entire ecosystem designed to stall the spread of the pandemic. From my perspective, everybody went into this situation together and everybody’s going to come out of it together.

    Q. What do you foresee as the split in demand from the North American and international markets?

    A. During the buildup leading to the Great Recession, the market shifted from being heavily dominated by the U.S. to a 60-40% international versus domestic split. Everyone thought that was going to be the new normal as the BRIC countries [Brazil, Russia, India and China] flourished. But as we now know, due to a variety of internal and external factors, with exception to China, the BRICs have not dominated the global economy as once predicted. The result, in term of business aircraft, is that over the past decade we’ve seen a dramatic shift back to U.S. dominance of this market. This dominance will likely ebb and flow to some extent over time, but there’s not a lot of data to support a major shift back to international dominance.

    Q. Are there any concerns on the international front?

    A. The sooner we can get through our current trade dispute with our largest trading partner and sit down at the table and have productive, meaningful and material discussions rather than throwing sticks and stones at each other and turning this pandemic into a political discussion, I think the better off we’ll all be. I also believe that will ease tensions, creating a more positive environment for the global cooperation that will be required to get the world’s economy working gain. I’m off my soapbox.

    Q. How has aircraft financing changed or not changed so far?

    A. Unlike the Great Recession, where the global banking system suffered from a near-complete lack of liquidity and the capital markets seized up, the banking system right now is in good shape. Liquidity is sound and capital is available. Despite this, lenders are being very cautious for the time being. This is completely in line with the overall industry “pause” that we are all experiencing. The aircraft financing industry will continue to monitor the overall economic environment and the health of the business jet market in order to better understand the impact this disruption is having on demand and, more importantly, aircraft values. Let’s face it: Finance and uncertainty do not coexist very well, and you could argue that we are currently at a point of maximum uncertainty. As the impact of the pandemic becomes clearer and key market indicators related to supply and demand settle into a new normal, the aircraft financing industry will follow suit.

    This article was originally published by Molly McMillin of Aviation Week on May 18, 2020.

  • NAFA Administrator posted an article
    NAFA's 49th Annual Business Meeting Webinar see more

    In the absence of NAFA's 49th Annual Conference, the Board of Directors invited the membership to attend our annual business meeting online on May 29, 2020.  Our Board Members discussed the following topics:

     

    State of the Association – An overview of NAFA past, present and planned initiatives.  How can a member association with a reputation for networking opportunities survive in a virtual world?  What value does NAFA bring to the membership during the COVID-19 crisis?  

     James Blessing, President 

    Financial Report – What is the state of NAFA's finances?  Is the Association healthy?  Will NAFA suffer a loss in 2020?  What can be expected going forward?  

    Tobias Kleitman, Treasurer

     

    Election of Directors – Wait, what?  Is the Association's Board active in the midst of a global pandemic?  Yes, NAFA has held elections as usual!  New Members have joined the Board, replacing members whose terms have expired.  Join us in welcoming our new Board of Directors and thanking outgoing Members that dedicated much time and energy to the Association.    

    David Warner, General Counsel

     

     

  • NAFA Administrator posted an article
    A Capital Option see more

    NAFA members, Keith Hayes, PNC Aviation Finance, and Lou Seno, JSSI, discuss operating leases in the latest Business Aviation Advisor podcast.

    It’s time to think about rebuilding your business.

    And doing so as soon as it’s safe will require traveling via business aircraft, to reconnect personally, face-to-face, with your key customers, allies, and associates.

    It also may require redeploying your capital to fund those rebuilding efforts. Using an operating lease to finance your aircraft can help you do just that.

    Listen as Keith Hayes, PNC Aviation Finance Senior Vice President, and Lou Seno, JSSI Chairman Emeritus, detail how financing a new aircraft – or refinancing your current one – via an operating lease enables you to devote more capital to your core business.

    When there’s more to be said than space and copy deadlines allow, you can rely on the Business Aviation Advisor Above and Beyond podcasts to get you the information you need, to help you make the most of your aviation investments.

    Thanks for reading, listening – and flying safely!

    Listen to Podcast here

    This podcast was originally published by Business Aviation Advisor on May 18, 2020.

  • NAFA Administrator posted an article
    Overview of the GAO Report on FAA see more

    In March of 2020, at the request of Congressmen Stephen Lynch and Peter King with the Subcommittee on National Security and the Committee on Oversight and Reform, the GAO released its long-awaited report on the FAA Registry’s ability to handle fraud and abuse risks in aircraft registrations.  As the title of the report clearly implies, the GAO found that the FAA Needs to Better Prevent, Detect, and Respond to Fraud and Abuse Risks in Aircraft Registration.  

    More specifically, however, the report found that the FAA needs to better review and vet the actual owners of aircraft.  As we all know, the FAA currently takes filed documents at face value, and records them if they meet certain requirements as set by the FAA itself.  While the rest of the industry has been subject to more and more demands to Know Your Customer, and to adhere to KYC and OFAC guidelines, the FAA has remained immune.  This report suggests that it is time for the FAA itself to do more due diligence and better vet the entities registering aircraft on its registry.

    There is also a clear need to allow law enforcement agencies more access to the data contained in the FAA registry.  Currently, registration information is mostly provided in .pdf format which is not easily searchable or accessible.  Many law enforcement agencies expressed frustration with an inability to have easy access to this information, and the report outlines opportunities for the FAA to be a center point to house data that could help law enforcement agencies to not only have better access to information, but to potentially allow for better cross-agency coordination to crack down on illegal activity involving the registration and use of general aviation aircraft.  

    The report seems to focus on increasing transparency in “Opaque Ownership Structures” for registering aircraft, which the GAO believes are at the highest risk for fraud and abuse.  Opaque Ownership Structures are legitimate business structures that are widely used by corporations and individuals to facilitate commerce as well as for asset and tax management. However, they lack transparency related to aircraft registrations and can create challenges for safety and law-enforcement investigators seeking information about beneficial owners to support timely investigations. 

    These ownership structures can include the following:  

    • shell companies, especially in cases where there is foreign ownership that is spread across jurisdictions; 
    • complex ownership and control structures involving many layers of shares registered in the name of other legal entities;
    • formal nominee shareholders and directors where the identity of the beneficial owner is undisclosed;
    • trusts and other legal arrangements that enable a separation of legal ownership and beneficial ownership of assets; 
    • use of intermediaries in forming legal entities, including professional intermediaries.  

    It is worth noting that the report specifically excludes publicly traded companies, shifting the focus of these security measures away from commercial airlines and towards the general aviation industry.  

    On pages 58-59 of the report, the GAO outlined 15 recommendations for Executive Action by the FAA.  Many of the recommended improvements to the FAA system are expected to be implemented in the FAA’s modernization project, slated to be completed by October 2021.  Generally speaking, the modernization project is expected to help streamline and automate the aircraft registration process,  and make the FAA records available to the public at all times.  The GAO report includes recommendations for using this new system to improve the FAA’s vetting process of owners registering aircraft on the FAA’s system, and using that technology to allow law enforcement officials more access to registry data.  Initial conversations with the FAA indicate they are on track to complete this project by the stated October 2021 deadline.  

    While the GAO has many recommendations to the FAA, there are still many questions to be answered.  These are the Top Issues we have identified:

    • The biggest unanswered question causing the most consternation in the industry, is the one involving transparency of ownership information.  How much transparency will there really be?  Will all aircraft ownership information be made available to the public, or only some?  Will there be sections of registry data that remain “private” and only made available to authorized government agencies?  That remains to be seen.  
    • Possibly the second largest question includes cost.  The report is clear that the $5 filing fee set in 1964 is not enough to cover even today’s operating expenses, much less the costs to modernize the system.  FAA has been talking about increasing registration costs for years, so an increase can likely be expected, but the question of how much remains to be answered.   How much will it cost to register an aircraft in the future?  
    • Time is money, so questions about increases in registration time also remain.  If FAA will be doing more vetting of its registrants, how much time will that take?   How much longer will it take to register an aircraft with the FAA?  What will this do to aircraft closing timelines?
    • Lastly, there is the issue of international operations.  The report expresses clear concern for FAA’s ability to issue Declarations of International Operations without knowledge or consent of specific law enforcement agencies.  FAA currently expedites requests for international flights on a daily basis for the general aviation community, but will they be able to do that in the future?  Or will there be a more stringent system of checks and balances required to issue Declarations of International Operations?  And how long will it take to finally have one issued?

    The FAA has yet to officially respond to the GAO’s report, but they have updated their website on the CARES Initiative to enhance and modernize the FAA registration services.  To learn more about it, you can go to their website here:  https://www.faa.gov/about/initiatives/cares/

    Furthermore, on March 30, 2020, they issued their Third Request For Information, requesting information from the industry.  To participate, click here:  https://beta.sam.gov/opp/8b7d6e20940d4d5b8b4e8e9e76a991b3/view  

    As NAFA members, it is important that we participate in any proposed changes to the FAA registration process as much as possible.  To the extent that you have time to fill out the FAA’s RFI, we encourage our members to do so. 

    NAFA will continue to monitor the proposed changes and the FAA’s eventual response and will report those to the membership.  

    The full report can be found here:  https://www.gao.gov/assets/710/705505.pdf

     

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Keyvan Havacilik A.S. Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    EDGEWATER, Md. – April 22, 2020 – National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that Keyvan Havacilik A.S. has recently joined its professional network of aviation service providers. 

    “NAFA members form a network of aviation finance services who diligently and competently operate with integrity and objectivity throughout the world. We’re excited to welcome Keyvan Aviation Group to our growing organization as we head to our 50th anniversary,” said Jim Blessing, president of NAFA.

    Keyvan Aviation works with current and prospective aircraft owners when making important decisions. The team’s approach to providing aircraft consultancy services begins with combining a comprehensive analysis of the client’s travel needs, objectives for aircraft features, and ownership arrangements.

    In Keyvan Aviation Group, the focus is on making the ownership experience smooth with the best solutions for transportation needs. Their services include consultancy, pre and delivery audit and valuation reports, financial services support and registry services, flight crew assembly, aircraft maintenance programs, and taking care of major maintenance events or upgrade modifications.

    Much like NAFA, Keyvan Aviation Group is dedicated to providing highly qualified experts. Keyvan and NAFA foster accurate data and accurate methods throughout the aviation industry. 

    For more information about Kayvan Aviation, visit nafa.aero/companies/keyvan-havacilik-as.

    About NAFA:  

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit NAFA.aero.

     

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    NAFA Postpones 49th Annual Conference for COVID-19 Precautions see more

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    EDGEWATER, Md. – March 17, 2020 – The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is postponing their 49th Annual Conference due to precautions taking place in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19, or Coronavirus. Scheduled to be held April 28th through May 1st, 2020 at The Meritage Resort in Napa Valley, California, NAFA’s Annual Conference is now on hold until further notice. 

    NAFA’s decision to postpone comes amidst what is now a national emergency due to the ongoing spread and impact of Coronavirus. With an abundance of care for its hundreds of members and dedication to promoting the aviation industry, the Board of Directors took great consideration in this course of action.

    “We understand the travel precautions our members are taking to protect their staff and communities, and the likely need for a temporary continuation of these restrictions,” stated Jim Blessing, President of NAFA. “Our Annual Conference is a highly anticipated meeting, with an extensive schedule of sessions on the latest developments in aviation and several social events. We don’t want anyone to miss out or be at risk, so our decision is to reconvene in 2021.”

    NAFA will remain apprised of all developments regarding COVID-19, including member and government-imposed travel precautions, and reschedule their Annual Conference based on those factors. The Board of Directors is hopeful about the timeframe and will keep its members and other attendees updated regularly.

    About NAFA:  

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit NAFA.aero.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    We Florida Financial Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    EDGEWATER, Md. – March 12, 2020 – National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that We Florida Financial has recently joined its professional network of aviation service providers. 

    “NAFA members form a network of aviation finance services who diligently and competently operate with integrity and objectivity throughout the world. We’re excited to welcome We Florida Financial to our growing organization as we head to our 50th anniversary,” said Jim Blessing, president of NAFA.

    We Florida Financial is a Fort Lauderdale based credit union – combining old-fashioned values with 21st century technology. As a credit union, their focus is on individual attention and support at the most competitive rates.

    The company’s aviation lending program, We fly, offers loans for aircraft purchases, aircraft refinance, aircraft upgrades, and flight training. We fly was created to provide an exceptional and affordable financing solution for clients’ aviation dreams. 

    Much like NAFA, We Florida Financial is dedicated to community, shared purpose and mutual trust. We fly and NAFA are committed to their members, and in turn the growth and success of the aviation industry. 

    For more information about We Florida Financial, visit nafa.aero/companies/we-florida-financial.

    About NAFA:  

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit NAFA.aero.

     

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Holstein Aviation Joins National Aircraft Finance Association, aviation finance, see more
    EDGEWATER, Md. – Feb. 27, 2020 – National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that Holstein Aviation has recently joined its professional network of aviation service providers. 

    “NAFA members form a network of aviation finance services who diligently and competently operate with integrity and objectivity throughout the world. We’re excited to welcome Holstein Aviation to our growing organization as we head to our 50th anniversary,” said Jim Blessing, president of NAFA.

    Holstein Aviation is a full service aircraft brokerage and acquisition firm. The company’s leaders and team are talented and seasoned – representing more than 300 years of domestic and international experience with knowledge, expertise and success as aircraft brokers and acquisition specialists.  

    The team’s success includes approximately 4,700 business aviation transactions valued in excess of 10 billion dollars, along with 66,000 combined flight hours, with light, medium and heavy jet type ratings from nearly all major aircraft manufacturers. Their extensive knowledge and in-depth experience as aircraft brokers and acquisition specialists is invaluable to their clients in negotiations.

    Holstein Aviation offers experienced professionals with broad backgrounds, including fixed- and rotary-wing airframe manufacturers, manufacturers of gas turbine engines, corporate flight department management, air charter companies, fractional aircraft programs, Fixed Base Operations (FBO), Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) and commercial airlines.

    Much like NAFA, Holstein Aviation prides itself on the integrity, capability and professionalism of the individuals who form their organization. Holstein and NAFA foster connections, credibility and capability throughout the aviation industry.

    "The Holstein Aviation team is proud to be a NAFA member,” said Shawn Holstein, President of the company. “Ensuring that our global client base is informed about financing opportunities and trends is critical, and NAFA helps make that possible."

    For more information about Holstein Aviation, visit nafa.aero/companies/holstein-aviation-inc.

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit NAFA.aero.

     

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    King & Spalding Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    EDGEWATER, Md. – Feb. 27, 2020 – National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that King & Spalding has recently joined its professional network of aviation service providers. 

    “NAFA members form a network of aviation finance services who diligently and competently operate with integrity and objectivity throughout the world. We’re excited to welcome King & Spalding to our growing organization as we head to our 50th anniversary,” said Jim Blessing, president of NAFA.

    King & Spalding is an international law firm that represents a broad array of clients, including half of the Fortune Global 100, with more than 1,100 lawyers in 21 offices in the United States, Europe, the Middle East and Asia.

    Celebrating more than 130 years of service, the firm has handled matters in over 160 countries on six continents and is consistently recognized for the results it obtains, uncompromising commitment to quality, and dedication to understanding the business and culture of its clients.

    The firm’s aviation finance lawyers have extensive experience advising clients on various financing structures involving aviation assets in North America, Europe, Asia, Oceania and South America – including operating leases, leveraged leases, capital leases, synthetic leases, syndicated and single-bank credit facilities as well as on purchases and sales of aircraft, engines and portfolios involving aircraft and aircraft-related assets.

    Much like NAFA, King & Spalding is dedicated to demonstrating professional excellence in service to clients. King & Spalding and NAFA are committed to educating and developing others in the field – ensuring long-term growth and success in the aviation industry. 

    For more information about King & Spalding, visit nafa.aero/companies/king-spalding-llp.

    About NAFA:  

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit NAFA.aero.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Aircraft Finance Specialists Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    EDGEWATER, Md. – Feb. 3, 2020 – National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that Aircraft Finance Specialists has recently joined its professional network of aviation service providers. 

    “NAFA members form a network of aviation finance services who diligently and competently operate with integrity and objectivity throughout the world. We’re excited to welcome Aircraft Finance Specialists to our growing organization as we head to our 50th anniversary,” said Jim Blessing, president of NAFA.

    Aircraft Finance Specialists’ objective is to secure the best financing terms to fit their clients’ needs. The company provides financing solutions for corporate and personal acquisition or refinance of jets and turboprops. 

    With decades of banking experience, the team at Aircraft Finance Specialists uses their wide breadth of industry knowledge and their specialty focus to market client transactions to multiple financial institutions. 

    Much like NAFA, Aircraft Finance Specialists' is dedicated to the aviation industry – delivering high quality and specialized service to their clients. 

    "Aircraft Finance Specialists is proud to join NAFA to ensure our customers are on the leading edge of information as it relates to financing trends within the marketplace,” stated Jonathan Robinett, President of the company.

    For more information about Aircraft Finance Specialists, visit nafa.aero/companies/aircraft-finance-specialists.

    About NAFA:  

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit NAFA.aero.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Professional Aircraft Appraisal Organization Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more

     

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    EDGEWATER, Md. – Feb. 7, 2020 – National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that The Professional Aircraft Appraisal Organization (PAAO) has recently joined its professional network of aviation service providers. 

    “NAFA members form a network of aviation finance services who diligently and competently operate with integrity and objectivity throughout the world. We’re excited to welcome the PAAO to our growing organization as we head to our 50th anniversary,” said Jim Blessing, president of NAFA.

    The Professional Aircraft Appraisal Organization (PAAO) was established to ensure the public trust in aircraft appraisal reporting. The group carefully selects aviation professionals, who then through training, comprehensive research, and detailed analysis provide credible reliable opinions of value.

    The PAAO, collectively comprised of aviation professionals both domestically and internationally, with thousands of years of aircraft appraising experience and knowledge, is the only professional aircraft appraisal organization focused exclusively on aircraft appraisal services. 

    The PAAO is second to none when it comes to credible and reliable aircraft appraisal reports. When clients engage the services of one PAAO Associate they also get the knowledge and experience of the entire PAAO organization due to the manner in which the PAAO is structured along with the interworking between Associates. Much like NAFA, the Professional Aircraft Appraisal Organization is committed to promoting high-level education and training in the aviation industry.  

    “It is important for the general public to understand that the aircraft appraisal industry is unregulated,” said Mike Simmons, President and Chairman of the PAAO. “Because there are no real standards in the aircraft appraisal industry, anyone can claim to be an aircraft appraiser. There are also no industry requirements regarding training, background and experience of these individuals so those clients who need creditable, reliable information when buying, selling or financing aircraft have no idea who has the knowledge, skills and abilities to help them. The general public generally tends to believe that pointing to a number on a display or in a book or checking a few boxes in an online analysis will provide them with credible results which is not the case at all. There are also individuals who claim to be aircraft appraisers who never leave the office to look at one rivet on an airframe or read one page in any log book when developing their opinion of value.”  

    Mike Simmons went on to say – “The PAAO continues to be different in the aircraft appraisal industry because we are the only organization that generally REQUIRES every signed report to involve a field visit of the aircraft and a review of all log books and maintenance records. The PAAO is focused exclusively on aircraft and aircraft values. We have no interest in any other heavy machinery or any interest in the publishing industry. Those clients who relied on credible and trustworthy results from a previous organization will find the PAAO staffed and filled with trained, experienced, professional aircraft appraisers who will provide detailed reports based on comprehensive research and analysis of the market. The objectives of our associates are to help our clients better manage their risks when buying, selling or financing aircraft.  We do this by providing factual data and information. “Knowledge is power.”

    For more information about The Professional Aircraft Appraisal Organization, visit nafa.aero/companies/the-professional-aircraft-appraisal-organization.

    About NAFA:  

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit NAFA.aero.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Sky Allies Capital Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more
     

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    EDGEWATER, Md. – Nov. 13, 2019 – National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that Sky Allies Capital has recently joined its professional network of aviation lenders. 

    “NAFA members form a network of aviation finance services who diligently and competently operate with integrity and objectivity throughout the world. We’re excited to welcome Sky Allies to our growing organization as we head to our 50th anniversary,” said Jim Blessing, president of NAFA.

    Sky Allies is a group of finance and aviation industry professionals – financing and leasing airplanes, helicopters, flight simulators and other aviation or industrial and technological equipment. The company specializes in credit challenged borrowers and other abnormal deal opportunities. They also offer special hourly simulator leasing programs for flight schools.

    The company is privately held and based in Las Vegas, NV. Sky Allies is a member of the American Association of Commercial Finance Brokers and thereby adhere to a Code of Ethics Program as voted on by their broker members. Their principal has 26 years experience in the aviation industry, is a Citation 525 rated pilot, ATP and an airplane owner.

    Much like NAFA, Sky Allies Capital is focused on the financing of aircraft – putting business plans in the air. Sky Allies and NAFA are committed to the highest level of customer service, fostering long lasting business relationships throughout the aviation industry.

    For more information about Sky Allies Capital, visit nafa.aero/companies/sky-allies-capital.

    About NAFA:  

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit NAFA.aero.

     

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    Wings Insurance Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    EDGEWATER, Md. – Nov. 11, 2019 – National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that Wings Insurance has recently joined its professional network of aviation service providers. 

    “NAFA members form a network of aviation finance services who diligently and competently operate with integrity and objectivity throughout the world. We’re excited to welcome Wings to our growing organization as we head to our 50th anniversary,” said Jim Blessing, president of NAFA.

    Wings Insurance is one of the largest aviation risks-only insurance brokers in the country, maintaining five office locations in the USA (Daytona Beach, Cleveland, Minneapolis, Chicago and Denver) and a customer base of over 2500 clients. The company’s aviation insurance reach encompasses every state in the USA along with global insurance placements in most EU, Middle East and Asian locales.

    Wings Insurance began in 1984, specializing in aviation insurance on a regional level. Since inception, the business has experienced a steady rate of growth, and almost 35 years later they offer global insurance solutions through a world-wide network of solution providers with over 100 years of combined aviation insurance experience.

    With their hands-on background in both the aviation and insurance industries, Wings has the resources to help their clients make informed decisions, whether it involves purchasing, financing, tax, legal, transitions or recurrent training. The company aims to provide the best coverages at the lowest price point available and solidify long-term partnerships through responsive customer service, creativity, and integrity. Wings is also one of only three International Aircraft Dealers Association (IADA) endorsed insurance brokerage firms. 

    Much like NAFA, Wings Insurance is dedicated to the highest quality of service to their clients and business associates – delivered with a sense of friendliness and individual pride. Wings and NAFA are committed to fostering industry knowledge and leading-edge technology throughout the aviation industry.

    For more information about Wings Insurance, visit nafa.aero/companies/wings-insurance.

    About NAFA:  

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit NAFA.aero.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    NAFA Announces Dawn Hudson as Keynote Speaker for 49th Annual Conference see more

    NAFA Announces Dawn Hudson as Keynote Speaker for 49th Annual Conference

     

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    EDGEWATER, Md. – November 11, 2019 – The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that Dawn Hudson will be the keynote speaker at their upcoming 49th Annual Conference, to be held April 28th through May 1st, 2020, at The Meritage Resort in Napa Valley, California. Hudson will be presenting to an audience of aviation industry and finance experts with a global reach – supporting or enabling the financing of general and business aviation aircraft throughout the world. 

    Widely recognized as one of the most important female business executives of the past decade, Dawn Hudson is the former Chief Marketing Officer at the National Football League and the former President and CEO of Pepsi Cola North America. She has led an impressive career spanning high-level posts in media, retail, consumer goods, consulting, and healthcare at some of the biggest corporations in the world. 

    Hudson’s work has been focused on revolutionizing and strengthening brands’ positioning and marketing, tapping into culture change as fuel for innovative business strategies, and championing inclusive leadership and diversity. She has been recognized as the “Most Vital Leader in Tech, Media, and Marketing” by AdWeek – topping a list of 50 industry titans – and twice as one of Fortune magazine’s “50 Most Powerful Women in Business.” 

    Dawn Hudson is an electric speaker – as an advocate of smart reinvention and growth, she shares insights on turning adversity into an advantage, building a global presence, and why in today’s business climate innovation must be central to everything from distribution to selling stories to human capital management. Hudson speaks about the power of brand, how to embrace change and drive innovation, and the importance of strong and inclusive leadership.

    The 49th Annual Meeting of the National Aircraft Finance Association will bring together the most active aircraft lenders in North America and worldwide to network and discuss issues topical to the industry, including: aviation regulatory changes, banking system regulatory changes, updates on new aircraft entering the marketplace, and other issues pertinent to aircraft buyers and their support systems. 

    “Dawn Hudson is an amazing mind with sharp insights into driving innovation, leadership and inclusion for successful business practices, and we are thrilled to have her speaking to our members and other attendees at the upcoming conference,” said Jim Blessing, President of NAFA. Hudson will present on “Inclusive Leadership” for the approximately 250 attendees on Thursday, April 30th, 2020. Additional details and time will be determined at a later date – visit NAFA.aero/events for information.

    For more information about Dawn Hudson, visit leadingauthorities.com/speakers/dawn-hudson.

    About NAFA: 

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit NAFA.aero.

  • Tracey Cheek posted an article
    NBT Bank Joins National Aircraft Finance Association see more

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

     

    FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – November 4, 2019 – National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is pleased to announce that NBT Bank recently joined its professional network of aviation lenders. 

    “NAFA members form a network of aviation finance services who diligently and competently operate with integrity and objectivity throughout the world. We’re excited to welcome NBT Bank to our growing organization as we head to our 50th anniversary,” said Jim Blessing, President of NAFA.

    NBT Bank offers personal and business banking, commercial banking and wealth management services from locations in seven states, including New York, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine and Connecticut and through its online and mobile channels. The bank added small aircraft financing to its array of lending options in 2019 and hired Douglas N. Place, Jr. as vice president of Aircraft Financing to lead their efforts. Place has nearly 15 years of experience in the financial services industry, including 10 years in aviation financing. He is also a private pilot and a member of the Board of Directors for the Greater Lawrence, MA Airport Authority.

    “NBT Bank is dedicated to building strong relationships and delivering high-quality service to our customers,” said Place. “I am proud to be a part of the NBT team and to deliver small aircraft financing as an enhancement to the bank’s business options. We’re very excited to join NAFA and foster long-term, mutually-beneficial relationships throughout the aviation finance community.”

    Established in 1856, NBT Bank is headquartered in Norwich, NY with its parent company, NBT Bancorp Inc. NBT Bancorp Inc. had assets of $9.7 billion as of September 30, 2019 and is traded on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol NBTB.

    NBT Bank appeared on the Forbes 2019 World’s Best Banks list as the top-ranked bank in Maine,  New Hampshire, New York and Vermont. Of the 60 U.S. banks on the list, NBT Bank was ranked #14. Forbes surveyed more than 40,000 customers around the globe and rated banks on overall recommendation and satisfaction as well as five subdimensions (trust, terms and conditions, customer services, digital services and financial advice).

    For more information about NBT Bank, visit nafa.aero/companies/nbt-bank.

    About NAFA:  

    The National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the general welfare of individuals and organizations providing aircraft financing and loans secured by aircraft; to improving the industry's service to the public; and to providing our members with a forum for education and the sharing of information and knowledge to encourage the financing, leasing and insuring of general aviation aircraft. For more information about NAFA, visit NAFA.aero.