AIG sells plane leasing firm ILFC to Chinese investors

American insurance company AIG said Sunday it will sell up to 90 percent of its plane leasing firm ILFC to a group of Chinese investors, in a deal that values ILFC at $5.28 billion.

The purchasing investor group is made up of New China Trust Co. Ltd, China Aviation Industrial Fund and P3 Investments Ltd.

They will acquire 80 percent of International Lease Finance Corporation for about $4.23 billion, with an option to acquire an additional 9.9 percent.

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When the transaction is completed, expected by mid-2013, AIG's 10 percent stake will allow "it to continue to participate in the growth of ILFC's unique franchise, including the benefits that the investor group will bring to the company," the insurance company said in a statement.

"This transaction creates a solid and strategic partnership for ILFC," said AIG chief Robert Benmosche, in the statement.

"While ILFC is an extremely strong business platform and AIG will retain a minority stake as a passive investor, the aircraft leasing business is not core to our insurance operations," he said, adding that the sale will benefit AIG's bottom line.

It will have "a positive impact on AIG's liquidity and credit profile and will enable us to continue to focus on our core insurance businesses," he said.

© 2012 AFP

Source: AFP
Date: Dec 10, 2012