AIG Aims to Sell Plane Leasing Firm AerCap for $4 Billion
American International Group Inc. registered to sell its 46 percent stake in plane lessor AerCap Holdings NV for a price that values the holding at more than $4 billion, as the insurer streamlines it operations.
AIG would offer 97.6 million shares of AerCap at a maximum price of $43.74 each, AerCap said in a regulatory filing on Tuesday. The insurer obtained the stake through its sale of International Lease Finance Corp. last year to Schiphol, Netherlands-based AerCap.
AerCap said that the offering price may change because the share value is only an estimate. AIG Chief Executive Officer Peter Hancock said in February that the insurer is in no rush to sell the stake. He said in his first annual letter to investors on Monday that he looks to keep exiting businesses that don’t align with AIG’s most lucrative operations, which are property and casualty, life and retirement coverage.
“Potential long-only investors have remained on the sidelines due to this large overhang” of AerCap’s stock, Helane Becker, an analyst with Cowen & Co., said in a note Tuesday. “The sale will create liquidity and introduce more long-term owners to the stock providing stability.”
AIG was required to retain its entire AerCap stake for at least nine months following the completion of the ILFC deal, after which it could dispose of one-third of its shares. The insurer then has to wait another three months to cut its holding to 33 percent and can completely exit three months after that.
AerCap fell 2.1 percent to $43.65 Tuesday in New York and has climbed 12 percent this year. AIG was little changed at $54.79.
AerCap also said Tuesday it will vote to add William N. Dooley, AIG’s executive vice president for investments, to the plane lessor’s board during this year’s annual meeting. He would replace the insurer’s former CEO Robert Benmosche, who died last month after treatment for lung cancer.
By Sonali Basak | April 2, 2015