Transportation: Aviation: Finance

Transportation: Aviation: Finance - Nationwide


第一等 |

Basic facts about the department
Key office is New York.

What the team is known for Highly regarded team offering a range of services in financing and transactional work. Regularly advises financial institutions and aviation industry clients on matters such as debt and equity offerings, securitizations and enhanced equipment trust certificates (EETC).

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"The team is outstanding. They are experienced, well informed and, very importantly, extraordinarily responsive to the needs of the company as we've progressed."

Work highlights Advised AWAS in connection with a $350 million private placement term loan. The loan was used to service debt for ten narrow-body aircraft.

Represented AerCap in a $1.5 billion term loan. The transaction is the largest ever loan secured by an aircraft lessor.

Notable practitioners  

The "top-notch" John Howitt co-heads the firm's US asset finance practice and has a recognized specialty in aviation finance. He has a depth of experience with a range of matters including leveraged lease transactions, aircraft purchases and securitizations.

The "outstanding" Zarrar Sehgal offers a well-established practice covering asset finance transactions, leveraged leasing, EETC transactions and secured lending. "I think very highly of him as a lawyer and a person," remarks one interviewee.  

The "excellent" Geoffrey White advises on asset financing, leasing and banking matters. His clients include airlines, operating lessors and financiers.

Emily DiStefano is well versed in aircraft financing and leasing, including EETCs and spare parts credit facilities. Sources call DiStefano "a superstar."

Significant clients Avolon, BBAM, Crédit Agricole, LATAM Airlines, BNP Paribas.

第一等 |

Basic facts about the department
Key office is New York.

What the team is known for A heavyweight practice that is often the first port of call for matters such as EETCs and capital market debt offerings. Regularly handles sophisticated, high-value transactions for airlines, financial institutes and lessors.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"Their performance has been excellent. The key differentiating factor is the depth of their bench and the level of senior partner involvement."

"The firm is dedicated to the sector and is clearly very focused on maintaining its leadership role." 

Work highlights Advised Goldman Sachs, Crédit Agricole and Natixis on Virgin Australia's first EETC transaction, which raised $796 million.

Represented a syndicate of lenders, led by Deutsche Bank and Goldman Sachs, in connection with a $1.5 billion term loan for the International Lease Finance Corporation.

Notable practitioners  

Drew Fine gains plaudits across the board, with one client noting that "on the securitization side there is no one better." In addition to aircraft securitizations, Fine handles a range of aviation-related work, including structured financings and leveraged leasing.

Helfried Schwarz has a broad practice which covers cross-border financings, EETCs and aircraft acquisitions, among other areas. "He has a good, calming effect when matters are running haywire, and has the ability to pick up the phone and resolve tricky matters based on his reputation and knowledge of counterparties," comments one impressed client.

Elihu Robertson has a wealth of experience in matters such as secured bank loans, EETCs and pre-delivery payments. Sources describe Robertson as "very practical and very pragmatic."

Significant clients Citibank, AerCap, Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan Chase, BBAM.

Band 1 | Vedder Price

第一等 |

Basic facts about the department
Key offices include Chicago and New York.

What the team is known for Hugely respected group servicing an impressive roster of national and international clients, including lenders, owners, government agencies and operators. Experience spans the full spectrum of matters, including securitizations, acquisitions, leasing and loan financings.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"They are highly knowledgeable. I admire their pragmatism and their business focus. That is a differentiator. Every person has been unflappable. They are always calm and pragmatic and are always looking for a solution."

"They do have a good knowledge and expertise, and they have a practical, no-nonsense approach." 

Work highlights Advised US Ex-Im Bank in connection with the $864.7 million financing of six Boeing 747 aircraft for Atlas Air and the $78 million financing of a Boeing 767 for MIAT Mongolian Airlines.

Represented Castlelake as issuer's counsel on its $515 million securitization of 79 aircraft, subject to operating leases.

Notable practitioners  

The Chicago-based Dean Gerber heads the firm's global transportation practice and advises a broad range of clients on matters such as cross-border leasing, securitizations and restructurings. One market observer notes: "When you see him on a deal, you know it will go well."

Ronald Scheinberg regularly handles equipment finance matters, including leveraged leases, operating leases and mortgage financings. His client base includes banks, manufacturers, underwriters and airlines. Sources describe him as "really top-notch."

Joshua Gentner assists clients on a plethora of issues including cross-border leveraged leases, project financing, mortgage financing and securitizations. He also has experience with advising airlines in bankruptcies and restructurings.

The "bright, effective, pragmatic and unflappable" Geoffrey Kass is noted for his expertise in structured financings. He regularly works with borrowers, lenders, lessors and credit enhancers.

Jeffrey Veber is often called upon to advise on tax-motivated structured financings, mortgage financings and asset purchase agreements. "As lenders' counsel, he is very pragmatic and commercial," notes a source.  

Significant clients Air Canada, CIT, RBS Asset Finance, DVB Bank, Intrepid Aviation.

第二等 |

Basic facts about the department
Key offices include New York and San Francisco.

What the team is known for Deep bench of well-regarded practitioners with recognized expertise in aircraft acquisitions, financings, leasings and restructuring transactions. Works with a range of domestic and international clients, and has noted experience in matters pertaining to the Latin American market.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"In one word, excellent. It's an absolute pleasure to deal with them. Extremely diligent and very commercial. The best law firm I have worked with in a long time."

"Excellent, excellent and excellent. They have great domain expertise and are extremely responsive."

Work highlights Advised BBAM on the purchase and leaseback of two 737-800 aircraft to TUI.

Acted for JetBlue Airways in connection with the structuring of the financing lease for two A321 aircraft.

Notable practitioners  

The "very commercial and solution-oriented" William Piels has a wealth of experience with financing and transactional matters and regularly advises operating lessors and financial institutes. He "keeps his cool," notes one client, who adds: "I enjoy having him on my side."

Practice head John Pritchard is described as "a pillar of the industry" and "a wonderful guy to work with" by impressed sources. Pritchard is based in New York and advises aviation industry clients in connection with the full spectrum of asset-based finance work.  

Fred Bass regularly advises on the financing and leasing of aircraft, including cross-border transactions and export credit agency-supported financing. Sources assert that he is "very knowledgeable" and "easy to work with."

MJ Spelliscy is noted for her work on a range of aviation financing and transactional issues, including sale and leaseback work and pre-delivery payment matters. Spelliscy handles aviation finance matters as part of a broader asset-based finance practice.

The "absolutely excellent" Phillip Durham has a specialty in advising on financings in the Latin American, Asian, African and Middle Eastern regions. "It's fantastic to work with him - he always comes out with a creative solution," remarks a client.

Sources praise Audrey Sung as being "very through, very persistent and dedicated to the details." She is based in San Francisco and works on securitizations and portfolio transactions, among other areas.

Associate Nathan Leavitt regularly assists on finance transactions in Latin America. "He can very easily take leadership of matters. He is very good from a technical point of view," comments an impressed client.

Significant clients GE Capital Aviation Services, CIT, Southwest Airlines, Apple Bank for Savings, Aircastle.

第二等 |

Basic facts about the department
Key offices include New York and Washington, DC.

What the team is known for Strong capabilities in financings, securities offerings and workouts in the aviation space. Regularly works with the world's most recognizable airlines and financial institutions.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"What stands out for me is the attention to detail, responsiveness even when our deadlines are tight, sound professional judgment and synoptic knowledge of other previous deals."

Work highlights Advised United Airlines on its issuance of $949 million pass-through trust certificates, series 2014-1 and $1.06 billion pass-through trust certificates, series 2014-2.

Acted for Republic Airways Holdings in its sale of Frontier Airlines.

Notable practitioners  

John Hoyns advises on a range of transportation and equipment financing issues. Hoyns is praised by sources for being "a strong writer, an excellent issue spotter and extremely responsive."

The DC-based Steven Chung is "super-accessible and very detail-oriented," according to one source, who adds: "He really knows the guts of a deal." He advises clients including lenders and commercial banks in connection with financings and corporate transactions.

Significant clients Wells Fargo Securities, Tennenbaum Capital Partners, Merx Aviation Capital, Delta Air Lines, JetBlue Airways.

第二等 |

Basic facts about the department
Key offices include New York, Miami and Los Angeles.

What the team is known for Well regarded for its handling of a range of asset finance work, including syndicated portfolio financings and EETCs. Works with a range of clients, including leasing companies, airlines and financial institutes.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"Great legal and negotiating skills and knowledge. They are very knowledgeable of financing structures and implications."

"The performance was outstanding. Their attention to detail, prompt responsiveness, and identification of the issues and their provision of solutions were some of the factors that stood out. I was impressed with the overall team." 

Work highlights Represented BBAM in the purchase and leasing, to Cathay Pacific Airways, of five Boeing 777-300ER aircraft.

Advised MIAT Mongolian Airlines in connection with the financing of a Boeing 767-300ER aircraft.

Notable practitioners  

The New York-based Michael Smith has an extensive financing practice and often leads on syndicated secured loans, EETCs, private placements and portfolio acquisitions. Sources describe him as "a fine practitioner" and "highly capable."

Key partner Christian Hansen is based in the firm's Miami office and regularly advises on secured lending and equipment financing transactions. "He is a very smart guy, very knowledgeable and an industry expert. He understands the dynamics of what's going on," notes one source.  

Ji Hoon Hong has a specialty in asset-backed and structured debt capital market transactions. "I was very impressed with his professionalism, negotiation skills and his commitment throughout the whole transaction. He was always on top of the issues, and presented us with the key points with follow-ups after very discussion," comments an interviewee.

Los Angeles-based Richard Smith is "extremely detail-oriented" and "very commercial and knowledgeable in the aircraft leasing stratosphere," say sources. Smith often represents Asian clients in leveraged financing, operating leases and portfolio acquisitions.

Significant clients Avianca Holdings, JPMorgan Chase, ILFC, Bank of America, LATAM.

第三等 |

Basic facts about the department
Key office is New York.

What the team is known for Represents a range of industry clients on the full spectrum of aviation-related transactions. Regularly advises on finance and capital markets work, workouts, restructurings and joint ventures.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"Their counsel on financing matters exceeds my expectations. They provide legal counsel that is informed, appropriate and studied. They make it easier for us to work on the business issues."

"I think they are one of the most capable law firms out there in terms of understanding the nuances of all the technical details with regards to financings and restructurings." 

Work highlights Advised AIG on its $7.6 billion sale of International Lease Finance Corporation to AerCap.

Acted for American Airlines in its acquisition of 60 Embraer E175 jets.

Notable practitioners  

Interviewees attest that John Curry "has business smarts as well as legal smarts." Curry is a well-regarded transactional lawyer and regularly handles capital markets work.

The "extremely knowledgeable" Jaeyong So is recognized for his handling of a range of aircraft financing work, including lease and mortgage financings.

Significant clients Clayton Dubilier & Rice, Delta Air Lines, Spirit Airlines, JFK International Air Terminal.

第三等 |

Basic facts about the department
Key office is New York.

What the team is known for Offers services in areas such as lease securitizations, secured revolving credit facilities and subordinated secured debt structures. Advises domestic and international entities such as airlines and investment banks.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"Their performance was top-notch and we were very pleased." 

"Excellent and timely advice." 

Work highlights Advised Air Canada on the financing of five Boeing 787 aircraft.

Represented Emirates in financing issues relating to the purchase of two Airbus A380 aircraft.  

Notable practitioners  

James Tussing advises on cross-border equipment finance and lease transactions, in addition to handling joint venture, workouts and restructurings associated with equipment financing. Sources say: "He is commercial and always finds solutions to things."

Sean Corrigan represents a broad range of clients such as airlines, equity investors and lenders. His areas of expertise include unsecured lending transactions and public debt placements.

Significant clients Mitsui, Apollo Aviation, Jackson Square Aviation, Republic Airway Holding.

第三等 |

Basic facts about the department
Key office is New York.

What the team is known for Handles an extensive range of aviation finance work, from procurement arrangements to capital markets offerings. Impressive roster of clients including commercial lenders, operating lessors and international airlines.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)  

"Outstanding performance on all aspects, very professional, timely manner, in all of the aircraft finance transactions I have been involved."

"They did an excellent job. We would like to work with them again."

Work highlights Advised a syndicate of banks on the secured financing of ten A320 and A321 aircraft for Spirit Airlines.

Represented Cargolux Airlines in its $1.4 billion financing of eight Boeing 747-8F aircraft and its refinancing of a Boeing 747-400.

Notable practitioners  

Michael Schumaecker regularly advises airlines on issues such as purchases, sales, pre-delivery payments and debt restructurings. Sources call him "a strong professional."

Mark Lessard cochairs the practice and advises on the full spectrum of aviation asset-based financing work. "He has a great combination of legal and technical skills and has the ability to take the commercial aspects into account," affirms one interviewee.  

Significant clients Turkish Airlines, Ethiopian Airlines, Citibank, Global Jet Capital, BBAM.

第四等 |

Basic facts about the department
Key office is Washington, DC.

What the team is known for Broad client base including aircraft manufacturers, insurers, part distributors, lessors and financial institutions. Solid expertise on transactional work, bankruptcies and insolvencies.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"Their performance has been great. They are very strong at processing legal documents to streamline closing processes. In addition, Katten has taken the time to understand our firm and develop institutional knowledge of our organization which leads to efficiencies when we are working with them on new projects."

"The quality of advice has always been high and timely, and sector knowledge is top-notch."

Work highlights Acted for Merx Aviation in its purchase of two Airbus 320-232 aircraft.

Advised Citibank on the purchase of four Boeing 757-200 aircraft and eight Pratt & Whitney 2037-M engines.

Notable practitioners  

Practice head Timothy Lynes handles a range of sale, financing and leasing work for manufacturers, airlines and insurers, among other clients. Commentators describe him as "a problem solver" and "very experienced."

Thomas Healey has a specialty in the workouts of aircraft during airline reorganizations. "He understands the dynamics of the business very well. He is one of the guys that is trying to find ways to overcome challenging situations," said a source. 

Significant clients Embraer, Goldman Sachs, UniCredit, Capital Source, VX.

第四等 |

Basic facts about the department
Key office is New York.

What the team is known for Areas of focus include structured finance, securitization, leasing and warehouse financing facilities. Works with commercial and cargo carriers, as well as entities in the private jet arena.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"They have performed fantastically. Their aircraft team is fantastic. The biggest thing for us is that they are very commercial. The advice we get is appropriately tailored."

Work highlights Acted for a group of lenders, including BNP Paribas and RBS, on the restructuring of a $550 million warehouse credit facility for Avolon.

Advised Deutsche Bank on the restructuring of leases for several Airbus A320 aircraft, leased to Vueling Airlines.

Notable practitioners  

The "brilliant" Michael Mulitz "clearly knows the area like the back of his hand," according to sources. He heads the practice and has a specialty in transactional work, regularly advising commercial and cargo carriers on acquisitions, financings and leasing.

Significant clients Goldman Sachs, Wheels Up, Credit Suisse, SriLankan Airlines, Guggenheim Aviation.

Other Ranked Lawyers 其他上榜律师

The "terrific" Marc Latman of Smith Gambrell & Russell LLP has a broad practice which includes advising on lease and debt financings as well as acquisitions and dispositions.

The DC-based Eileen Gleimer of Crowell & Moring LLP is recommended for her handling of matters such as aircraft purchases, sales and financings.

Elizabeth Evans of Dentons has an "incredible knowledge of the industry, including an understanding of market trends and legal issues," say sources. Her expertise spans aircraft purchases and equipment leasing, and she advises both passenger and cargo carriers, among other clients.

Deepak Reddy of Dentons often advises airlines, leasing companies and financial institutions on financing and leasing transactions. "I think he is excellent, flat-out excellent. He went through the contract and pulled out the important points and helped us get a perspective," attests one client.

Jeffrey Tenen of Greenberg Traurig, LLP is noted for his work with South American carriers and is "a knowledgeable guy who you can talk to and do a deal with," reports one commentator. Tenen concentrates his practice on financing and leasing work.

Rory Kelleher of Sidley Austin LLP has a wide-ranging aviation finance practice and frequently handles cross-border lease transactions, securitizations and international transactions. His client base includes aircraft and aircraft engine manufacturers.

Alan Brenner of Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP has a wide-ranging practice which includes advising on leveraged finance. He has a domestic and international practice and regularly acts for clients in Africa, Asia and Latin America.

Market observers highlight William Bowers for his representation of financial institutions in aviation finance matters. He recently joined Winston & Strawn LLP from Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman. His areas of expertise include capital market deals and securitizations.

William Callaway of Zuckert, Scoutt & Rasenberger, LLP is highlighted by commentators for his work with financial institutes, with one insider noting: "I have always been impressed, I think he does the transactions well."

Foreign Experts

Foreign Experts are individuals with expertise in a different jurisdiction to the one they are based in. These individuals are particularly highly regarded for international and cross-border work. Usually, they will be identified in the jurisdiction in which they are based and in their country of expertise.

Senior Statesman

A 'Senior Statesman' is a lawyer who no longer works hands-on with the same intensity but who, by virtue of close links with major clients, remains pivotal to the firm’s success.

Eminent Practitioners

'Eminent Practitioners' are highly influential lawyers in a particular practice area who, due to managerial or client relationship commitments, are less active in day-to-day work but remain key players in the team.

Other Noted Practitioners

Other Noted Practitioners are individuals who have not yet been ranked but are seen to be active and accomplished in this area of law.

Other Noted Firms

Other Noted Firms are firms that have not yet been ranked but are seen to be active and accomplished in this area of law.