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TheStreet Open House

Aircastle's CEO Presents At Credit Suisse 2011 Aerospace & Defense Conference (Transcript)

Stocks in this article: AYR

And it’s a cyclical business. It’s a business which is entirely global. And despite the cyclicality, that performance of the business has been quite good. I will talk about the market, I’ll talk about what we have bought, how we have done over the cycle, our financial profile and where we see things in terms of opportunities in our plan going forward. But it is a distinct -- we have a different investment strategy as you heard and also different funding strategy.

So a few comments about the market. I am going to talk about both in terms of long-term and short-term. Long-term the market tends to follow GDP and the relationship over time -- and I mean global GDP to be clear, because these are portable assets and when an aircraft lease is over we look around the whole world and find out where the best demand is. It’s a portable asset. And relationship between growth in air travel, which in turn is growth in aircraft demand and GDP, has been about 1.5 to 2 times. So it tends to grow and to move in the other direction in terms of GDP movement at an amplified way.

And that’s true for both the freight market and the passenger market. Roughly the same relationship. Now what's driving our market isn’t what's happening in terms of Europe or in the U.S. to have an effect. But the growth in our markets come from the emerging economies. And the emerging economies have accounted for an increasing share of the order stream and frankly that’s where we see more and more of our business going.

The effect of the -- I will just pause here and talk about American for a moment. We have zero aircraft in American airlines. U.S. airlines historically have done very very little with leasing companies. Although I think that’s changing for the upside. U.S. airlines tend to own their aircraft forever. For 20 years plus they used to rely on tax financings from -- tax shelter financings, they rely on the capital markets. And I think that as the capital markets have gone a little trickier, they have relied more and more, as you many have seen in the headlines, on leasing companies. I think that’s a positive trend.

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