Jeff Pino, the ex-Sikorsky Aircraft President who "retired" in 2012, is back in the helicopter business, this time as CEO of newly formed Macquarie Rotorcraft Leasing, part of the U.S.-based Macquarie Group.
“Leasing reduces risk and improves operator balance sheets,” stated Pino. Having served at the pinnacle of one of the world major helicopter manufacturers, his experience leads him to believe that the growth of the leasing sector should not be seen by OEMs as a sudden growth in the market: “The OEMs must not see leasing as an increase in demand. There is a glut in money, not in helicopters. But OEM forecasting models are mature.” He believes that the OEMs will ensure that the residual value of helicopters will be maintained.
Jeff Pino at Heli-Expo 2014. Photo by Andrew Drwiega
“With the increase in the price of oil, operators can lease equipment but they don’t need to own it,” he said. With longer range offshore developments poised to expand the type and range of helicopters required, he said that the energy sector could "hedge" its options with smart risk management over a set period of time. Pino believes that around 75 percent of the leasing business will be in the oil and gas sector, although there are also growing opportunities in the EMS sector.
Forecasting his company’s business growth, he expects to have “$100s of millions of assets on the Macquiare Rotorcraft Leasing book by the end of the year.” The company focuses on owning and leasing medium and heavy twin turbine helicopters. Back in October 2013, Macquarie contracted with Sikorsky for two S-92As and two S-76Ds. At Heli-Expo 2014, it was revealed that another two S-92As were bought and leased back to Bond Offshore Helicopters, while another S-76D was added.
Related: Leasing News