Willis Mitsui Engine Support Ltd (WMES)
On June 1, 2011 Willis Lease Finance Corporation entered into a joint venture agreement with Mitsui & Co., Ltd. to acquire and lease IAE V2500-A5 and General Electric CF34-10E jet engines. IAE V2500 engines are used on the Airbus A320 family of aircraft and CF34-10E engines are used on the Embraer E190 and E195 aircraft.
"We are delighted to partner with Mitsui and believe the joint venture will have a number of competitive advantages in the engine leasing market," said Charles F. Willis, President and CEO. "Our deep knowledge of the jet engine leasing market and Mitsuiâ€™s equity capital contribution, ability to provide attractive financing and its global network will be a powerful combination."
Willis Lease and Mitsui will each own 50% of the new joint venture. The new company, named Willis Mitsui & Co Engine Support Ltd., will be an Irish corporation with offices in Dublin. Initially the joint venture plans to acquire approximately $150 million in assets. Willis Lease will provide the initial lease portfolio by selling seven V2500 engines to the joint venture by the third quarter of 2011.
China Aviation Supplies Import & Export Corp. (CASC)
On June 9, 2014, Willis Lease Finance Corporation and China Aviation Supplies Import & Export Corporation Limited announced the launch of CASC Willis Engine Lease Company Limited (“CASC Willis”), a new 50/50 joint venture. The new company will be dedicated to supplying Chinese airlines with the best engine support solutions and creating an engine resource sharing platform. CASC Willis will be based in Shanghai and will concentrate on meeting the fast growing demand for leased commercial aircraft engines and aviation assets in the People’s Republic of China.
CASC Willis will be established within the China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone (“SFTZ”) in order to take advantage of the evolving governmental support programs offered to companies there.
The joint venture’s initial focus will be investing in current generation engines powering the fleet of narrow body and wide body commercial aircraft in China and fully expect to migrate into new technology engines, such as CFM International’s LEAPx, General Electric’s GEnx and GE9X and Pratt & Whitney’s GTF, once those engines become available.