Knighthood Capital Partners and AVi8 Air Capital have signed an MoU to cooperate in aviation consulting and aircraft leasing and financing.
The collaboration will allow Knighthood to leverage AVi8’s position in the US and South American markets, while sharing its deep aviation management and aircraft financing expertise as well as its wide network of contacts in the global airline and aviation finance industry.
James Hogan, Executive Chairman of Knighthood Capital said: “By sharing our expertise and broader range of contacts globally, we can cooperate in areas such as new airline development and new aircraft leasing platforms, in addition to traditional airline consulting and advisory across a broader market.
“We are also very pleased to welcome Ed on to our advisory board. His extensive experience in North and South America as well as the Caribbean will be a unique asset.”
Ed Wegel, AVi8’s Co-founder and President said: “At AVi8 Air Capital we have created value across the aviation industry over four decades, managing and learning from the cycles and launching new business models to meet the requirements of the changing industry.
“We are currently working on a number of exciting projects, which will undoubtedly be enriched through our partnership with Knighthood and we look forward to working on new projects where we can leverage our joint expertise across a wider geographic area.”
US-based Mr. Wegel has been a leader in the global airline and aviation industry for over three decades. During his career to date, he has launched several new airlines, restructured other airlines and aviation companies, and advised many airlines worldwide on strategy and aircraft programmes. He also brings expertise in investment banking and deep expertise in airline mergers and acquisitions, having served as an advisor to major equity and investment funds.
He is the Co-founder and President of AVi8 Air Capital LLC, which he set up in 2017. The company offers aviation consultancy and aircraft leasing services primarily in the North American and Latin American markets. Amongst other projects, AVi8 is presently developing new airlines including Global Crossing Airlines, Inc. an A320 ACMI/wet lease charter operator.
Mr. Wegel is also a consultant to Credit Suisse on Securitized Products, providing advisory on the development of a new aircraft leasing platform.
James Hogan said: “Ed’s appointment to our advisory board will further strengthen our new strategic commercial and consulting collaboration with AVi8 and extend the scope of our work geographically into the Americas where he has a wide network and deep expertise.
“We are sure his experience and expertise will complement and strengthen our global offering and look forward to working with him.”
Prior to setting up AVi8, he worked in a range of senior management and C suite positions across the American airline industry and also served as Vice President in the investment banking and restructuring division of Lehman Brothers in New York from 1987 to 1991, where he worked on several major airline restructurings and ran Lehman's portfolio of 45 commercial jet aircraft on lease to major US airlines.
He saw five years of active military service as a combat arms commander in the US Army from 1980 to 1985.
He is a graduate of the United States Military Academy, West Point and received his MBA in Finance from the University of Northern Colorado in 1982.
AVi8 will create a development plan including long term infrastructure development and funding, for the Latacunga/Quito Airport which will include a new LCC airline to serve intra-regional routes as well as the US.
AVi8 will provide strategic advice with regards to route and fleet planning, and will be arranging the sale leaseback of two 737-800s owned by thai Summer. AVi8 will also work with Boeing on a potential order for ten (10) 737-9 MAX aircraft. Thais Summer will provide scheduled service to bangkok from a number of cities in China, and will eventually expand to Vietnam, Cambodia and other Asian countries.
Ed Wegel will join Next Levels' board of directors as they complete their funding with Turning Rock Partners, a $400 million equity fund based in New York.
Next Level Aviation is an ASA-100 accredited and FAA Advisory Circular 00-56B compliant supplier stocking QEC, airframe and APU rotable material for all Boeing and Airbus platforms, with a specialization in parts for B737NG/ B777/ A320/ A330 aircraft.
AVi8 will assist Next level in growing annual sales to $250 million over the next three (3) years and open new marketing opportunities with airlines and suppliers worldwide.
AVi8™ Air Capital has acquired three (3) A320-200 aircraft and spare V2500 engines, to be operated by a major tour operator airline.