Asset finance

A&O Shearman is a recognized leader in asset finance and is renowned for handling the most complex domestic and cross-border transactions.

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Our team comprises some of the world’s most experienced specialists who are consistently ranked in the top tiers by the leading legal directories.

Breath of expertise keeps our clients ahead of market developments

Our practice encompasses the aviation, shipping and container, rail, space, equipment, IT and satellite industries. 

We advise a wide variety of clients around the world including airlines, operating lessors, shipping companies, energy providers, sponsors, commercial banks, investment banks, private equity funds, export credit agencies, insurance consortiums, manufacturers, and governmental agencies.

This breadth of expertise gives us unique insights into key jurisdictional, legal and commercial issues and enables us to provide practical and focused advice aligned with the latest global and local trends.

Advice on M&A, finance and capital markets transactions

We have decades of experience advising clients on portfolio purchases and sales of various asset types, mergers and acquisitions, secured and unsecured facilities, revolving credit facilities, and ECA-supported financings.

We act on insurance-supported financings, sustainability linked financings, pre-delivery payments (PDP) financings, operating leases, tax-based leases, long- and short-term chartering arrangements, and vessel procurement and construction arrangements.

Our team also advises on terminal financings, capital markets transactions (including ABS and EETC), Islamic financings (including sukuks), slots and receivables financings, manufacturer contracts, maintenance and technical contracts, lease novations, trade financings, and litigation, restructurings, repossessions, and work-outs.

Advice at the cutting edge of ESG developments

We are at the forefront of ESG developments in the transportation sector and help our clients navigate the rapidly evolving landscape, as demonstrated by our knowledge partnership with the Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping in Copenhagen.

Our team is located in all major global markets and we pride ourselves on our truly integrated approach, refined through decades of close teamworking and collaboration, which enables us to offer our clients seamless cross-border services of the highest quality.

Representative matters

  • AviLease on its USD3.6 billion acquisition of Standard Chartered Bank’s global aviation leasing business, Pembroke Capital. (Named "M&A Deal of the Year" for 2023 by Airline Economics).
  • One of the world's largest airline groups on a USD1.755bn senior secured revolving credit facility (RCF) secured against eligible unencumbered aircraft and airport take-off and landing slots at London Heathrow and London Gatwick airports. (Named "European Debt Deal of the Year" for 2022 by Airline Economics). 
  • Telesat on its multibillion dollar financing and other aspects of the Lightspeed LEO constellation. 
  • SACE, Crédit Agricole CIB and Cassa Despositi e Prestiti on the pre- and post-delivery financing of four new Fincantieri-built luxury cruise ships for MSC to be operated under the "Explora" brand.
  • Lineas, the largest private rail freight company in Europe, on landmark partnerships with Beacon Rail and Ermewa through two sale and long-term leaseback transactions, one relating to 109 T77 diesel locomotives and the other relating to more than 4,000 wagons. 
  • A leading European flag carrier on a market-first USD553 million sustainability-linked enhanced equipment trust certificate (EETC) transaction described as a “historic raising” in industry reports. (Named "Sustainability Financing Deal of the Year" for 2021 by AirFinance Journal, "Best European Deal" for 2021 by Ishka, and "Sustainability Capital Markets Deal of the Year" and "European Overall Deal of the Year" for 2022 by Airline Economics.)
  • The banks on USD1.6bn innovative unsecured multi-tranche financing for DAE Capital, structured as a combination of revolving credit facilities and term financing facilities, combining conventional tranches and AAOIFI compliant and non-AAOIFI Islamic tranches.  
  • Crédit Agricole CIB and Lenders on a USD625m sustainability-linked loan for CDB Aviation marking the aviation industry’s first major sustainability-linked syndicated term loan facility for an aircraft lessor. (Named "Sustainability Deal of the Year" for 2023 by Airline Economics).
  • Air Lease Corporation on its inaugural USD$600m sukuk issuance, the first offering of its kind into the Middle East market from a North American corporate and the largest sukuk from a US-based borrower in history. (Named "Overall Deal of the Year" for 2023 by Airline Economics).

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