Air Cargo Management

Challenge Group secures $60m freighter conversion financing deal with Investec

Investec Aviation Finance has announced that it has provided €60.45 million to Challenge Group to assist with the purchase and conversion of four Boeing 767-300ER planes into freighter aircraft.

The passenger-to-freighter conversion programme is core to Challenge Group’s expansion strategy and will allow it to increase its current fleet of eight widebody aircraft.

It is hoped the financing deal with Aviation Finance is the start of a long-term partnership with Investec which operates across the UK, South Africa, the US, Singapore and Dublin. Over the past decade it has supported around $10bn of aviation debt.

Joseph Barnwell, senior associate at Investec Aviation Finance, said: “The financing solution we provided for the Challenge Group highlights Investec’s ability to create an innovative financing package that not only takes into account the value of the aircraft in their passenger and freighter configurations, but also Challenge Group’s ability to utilise these assets before and after conversion.”

Michael Koish, chief investment officer at Challenge Group, said:  “This was no straight-forward financing deal but thanks to strong cooperation and out-of-the box thinking we were able to solve some of the complicated issues that popped up along the way.

“Hopefully this will be the first of many deals to come with Investec, as Challenge Group continues to assert its ambition to strengthen its position in the air cargo sector.”

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