SMBC Aviation Capital becomes first aircraft leasing company to sign leases through GATS

-GATS to streamline processes in aircraft leasing and reduce costs-

Dublin December 19 2019: SMBC Aviation Capital, one of the world’s leading aircraft leasing companies has today announced that it has completed the world’s first operating leases through the Global Aircraft Trading System - GATS.The leases were completed recently with Singapore based LCC, Scoot and Korean based airline, Air Busan. SMBC Aviation Capital expects to sign further GATS leases with additional airlines shortly.

GATS is an electronic trading platform which has been developed by the Aviation Working Group (AWG), working with Irish company Fexco, to create greater efficiencies and cost savings in trading processes and will make aircraft trading simpler. It is a system which will modernise aircraft trading and financing with a secure, live and searchable electronic ledger displaying details of ownership, transfers and security interests in GATS aircraft-owning trusts.

Commenting on the development, Alison Curtin, SVP Commercial Negotiation, SMBC Aviation Capital said, “We are delighted to be the first aircraft leasing company in the world to use the GATS platform to complete a number of leases with different airlines.We would like to acknowledge our airline customers for working closely with us in our implementation of GATS.

As the number of trades within the aviation industry has significantly increased, inefficiencies have developed in trading processes. This has resulted in wasted time and resources for airlines, lessors and financiers alike and a growing sentiment of “novation fatigue” amongst airlines in particular.GATS will revolutionise the aircraft leasing industry as it will streamline trading processes and will ultimately minimise onerous documentation requirements and reduce costs.”

GATS was developed as a result of the main aircraft leasing companies and other industry participants coming together through the AWG to discuss how processes can be innovated within aircraft leasing. The GATS electronic platform will officially go live from the first quarter of 2020.However, transactions can currently be completed through GATS in a paper based form.


Conor Irwin, SMBC Aviation Capital: +353 87 381 6106

Richard Webster Smith, Finsbury: +44 7796 708551

About GATS

GATS will be a fully electronic system, with e-signatures, e-delivery of documents and use of a secure electronic ledger to record transactions

Each aircraft will be owned by a US, Irish or Singapore trust.

The sale of an aircraft will be performed by an e-transfer of the beneficial interest in a trust.

The transfer and related documents will be standardised and executed and delivered electronically.

GATS won’t change commercial terms agreed with an airline in leases. Any conditions to a transfer can be integrated into a GATS transaction, which preserves all rights and protects all parties.

GATS is a voluntary system open to all industry players.

Full details on GATS, including GATS FAQs and guidance materials are available at

About SMBC Aviation Capital

Based in the IFSC in Dublin 1, SMBC Aviation Capital is one of the world’s leading aircraft leasing companies, with 83 airline customers in 37 countries. At 30 September 2019, the company owns, manages and is committed to purchase 717 aircraft. Established in 2001, the company was acquired in 2012 by a consortium comprising of two of Japan’s biggest companies SMFG and Sumitomo Corporation. For further information go to

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Conor Irwin/Orla Benson
SMBC Aviation Capital

+353 1 859 9425

+353 1 859 9067



Rob Greening /Jack Hickey

+44 0 207 250 1446
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