TrueNoord lease for Bangladesh and Philippines


TrueNoord is leasing two new De Havilland Canada Dash 8-400 aircraft to Philippine Airlines under a long-term operating lease agreement.

These will be the first Dash 8-400 aircraft in TrueNoord’s portfolio and were financed within a new $360 million warehouse facility announced last October and underwritten by Citibank, Société Générale and Royal Bank of Canada.

Chief operating officer at De Havilland Canada, Todd Young, commented: “We’re extremely pleased to see our Dash 8-400 aircraft join TrueNoord’s growing fleet of regional aircraft types; and are delighted that it will enable them to offer airline customers more choice in this rapidly expanding sector of the aircraft leasing marketplace.

Extra seat capacity, flexible legroom, and excellent cargo capabilities are additional benefits that the Dash 8-400 aircraft offers and we’re confident that Philippine Airlines will derive the tangible operational efficiency and route network reliability that they seek.”

It will enter PAL’s commercial service in February and will be based at Clark International Airport. The Dash 8-400 aircraft will fly domestic routes throughout the Philippines archipelago of more than 7,600 islands.

Specialist regional aircraft lessor, TrueNoord has placed two additional ATR 72-600 aircraft on a long-term operating lease. The leases are in partnership with expanding Bangladeshi domestic and international operator, US-Bangla.

CEO of TrueNoord, Anne-Bart Tieleman, said: “We are delighted to further support US-Bangla’s fleet modernisation programme. Our recent deliveries to them form part of a growing footprint for TrueNoord across the Indian sub-Continent.

“We are currently working on a variety of transactions where the flexibility and operational route expansion opportunities provided by regional aircraft suit the growth ambitions of several airlines. These two turboprops increase our number to fourteen ATRs out of an aggregate fleet of 48 regional aircraft operating worldwide.”

The aircraft was financed by Citibank Société Générale and Royal Bank of Canada under TrueNoord’s revolving warehouse facility.

The TrueNoord lease

The new aircraft has supplemented the recently re-marketed ATR72-600. The aircraft was transitioned in October from Air France HOP! by TrueNoord. This brings TrueNoord’s total fleet placed with US-Bangla to three ATRs. The aircraft type is said to shape the backbone of the airline’s modern regional fleet.

US-Bangla is headquartered in Dhaka, it flies to 16 destinations and the turboprops will be operated the domestic network covering Dhaka, Chattogram, Cox’s Bazar, Jashore, Sylhet, Saidpur, Rajshahi and Barishal.

TrueNoord has also placed two more new ATR 72-600 aircraft on long-term operating leases with expanding Bangladeshi domestic and international operator, US-Bangla.

The aircraft were have financed under TrueNoord’s revolving warehouse facility. Milbank represented TrueNoord and Clifford Chance advised the banks on the financing side of the transaction.

These new aircraft supplement the recently re-marketed ATR72-600 which TrueNoord transitioned from Air France HOP! in October and bring TrueNoord’s total fleet placed with US-Bangla to three ATRs.

Headquartered in Dhaka and flying to 16 destinations, US-Bangla has a long history of operating regional aircraft across their domestic skies. Currently, its network covers eight cities: Dhaka, Chattogram, Cox’s Bazar, Jashore, Sylhet, Saidpur, Rajshahi and Barishal.

Sales director of Asia Pacific TrueNoord, Carst Lindeboom, adds that the company is seeing significant growth across all parts of Asia.

As air travel becomes more affordable and the regional airport infrastructure expands, this increase is set to continue: “The economic and logistical benefits of turboprop aircraft provide the best solution where local geography is inhospitable and shorter runways are commonplace. TrueNoord’s portfolio of turboprops is operating across India, Bangladesh and South East Asia improving connectivity and commerce.”

To find out more about TrueNoord click here.

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