As any aviation advocate knows, the future of International Lease Finance Corp. is uncertain due to the problems at its parent, AIG. The US government has bailed out AIG for $85 billion (which would fund the acquisition of 360 USAF tankers, BTW, but that’s a different issue) and plans to have an orderly sale of AIG assets.
ILFC’s CEO and founder, Steven Udvar-Hazy, is trying to arrange financing to buy the company back from AIG, which bought it from Hazy and his co-founders in 1990.
Today, Boeing stock is down on fears ILFC’s troubles will lead ILFC to cancel orders for 74 787s and some 30 737s. (Disclosure: we have a long-term holding in Boeing stock.)
We don’t think that will happen and we believe the stock market is off base on this one.
The orders, especially for the 787, are a great asset for ILFC and will be an important part of any sale of the company. Furthermore, even if ILFC were to cancel, other lessors and airlines will snap up these positions, resulting in no net loss in orders for Boeing.