Helicopter Investor London 2015 Live Blog: Day Two


More than 250 people have returned to the final day of Helicopter Investor London 2015, held again at The Royal Garden Hotel. Today we have speakers from Bristow, Airbus Helicopters and Waypoint Leasing.

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Live news

16.30 Helicopter Investor London 2015 is finished. Join us again next year for a conference that will no doubt be even bigger and better. Make sure you check back on the website from tomorrow where delegates can download presentations.

15.25 The current motion: “This house believes that only weirdos and nerds end up in the helicopter market.”

A lot of hands have gone up…

15.15 Alasdair Whyte, editor of Helicopter Investor, is now leading an Oxford-style debate with Sharon Desfor, president of HeliValue$ and Kipp Fawcett, managing director at Nomura Securities arguing for the motion and Crispin Mauder and Ed Washecka, CEO and founder of Waypoint Leasing aruging against.

Unfortunately, I’m not allowed to quote anything, as – like everybody else in the room – I’m bound by Chatham House rules. But it’s safe to say that the session is proving very popular amongst our delegates.

15.00 Crispin Maunder, executive chairman of LCI Helicopters, confirms a substantial helicopter order from AgustaWestland.

12.50 Last poll before lunch: how important is ECA-supported finance in the helicopter market?

Very important: 31%
Fairly important: 51%
Just another funding source: 13%
Not really important: 0%
Irrelevant: 4%

12.25 Audience poll: what should be the principal vocations of export credit agencies?

Lender of last resort: 17%
Supporting their country’s manufacturing industry: 64%
Complimentary finance source to complimentary finance: 19%

10.45 Alan Jenkins, CFO of Waypoint Leasing and Stephane Arsenault, vice president of capital markets at Element Financial are now sharing their different approaches to structuring helicopter transactions in a session moderated by Vedder Price’s Ed Gross.

10.25 If you’re curious about the make-up of the room, 64% of delegates at Helicopter Investor London 2015 say they are finance providers.

10.00 Fabrice Arfi, VP Business Development, Airbus Helicopters, says: “This is no longer Eurocopter as you know it. We hope the rebranding of the company will have a significant effect on you all.”

“One of the great assests of Airbus Helicopter is our global presence,” says Arfi, pointing to a slide that shows there are more than 3,000 operators of AIrbus Helicopters in the world.

09.55 Audience poll: 69% of delegates think we will see more consolidation of helicopter operators in 2015.

09.40 Bristow also operates fixed-wing aircraft. The company recently acquired an 85% stake in Airnorth, the larest regional airline in North Australia. “We do a lot more for our clients than just helicopters,” says Mannion.

09.35 The UK search and rescue contract is the biggest – and most prestigious – contract in Bristow’s history, says Mannion. The company will operate from nine bases and rely heavily on the Sikorsky S-92 helicopter, which he describes as a “beast.”

The AgustaWestland AW189 is a smaller, lower investment aircraft, but delivers similar capabilities.

09.30 Bristow’s John Mannion is kicking things off with a look into the company’s operating lease strategy.