New Regional Lessor Abelo Signs Provisional Deal For 10 ATR 72-600s

ATR and Abelo CEOs at Fboro 22
ATR CEO Stefano Bortoli (left) and Abelo CEO Steve Gorman (right)
Credit: ATR

FARNBOROUGH—Turboprop leasing startup Abelo, which was created from the June 2022 merger of Elix Aviation and ADARE Aviation Capital, has agreed on terms to acquire 10 ATR 72-600s.

Abelo also confirmed an order for 10 short take-off and landing (STOL) ATR 42-600S, based on a letter of intent signed by Elix in 2019. Deliveries of the ATR 72-600s will begin in 2023, while the first STOL version will arrive at the end of 2024.

The merged company brings together ADARE Aviation Capital—which was created in 2020 by former Nordic Aviation Capital (NAC) chief funding officer Steve Gorman—and Dublin-based regional aircraft specialist Elix Aviation, which launched in 2013. 

Elix investor Oaktree Capital Management initiated the merger. Elix provided its portfolio of 65 aircraft and a leasing platform, while ADARE contributed a management team made up of a number of ex-Nordic Aviation Capital (NAC) executives.

Abelo CEO Gorman said the company will specialize in turboprops and, with few active turboprop manufacturers in the market, ATRs will be a natural focus. “As we are looking to expand and become the go-to lessor of turboprops, our strong links with ATR will prove invaluable,” Gorman said.

Gorman sees significant demand for ATRs, particularly in southeast Asia, because this is a growth market where a lot of airports require STOL capability.

Abelo has around 60 owned and managed aircraft. “We would expect to be able to double that in the next two to three years,” Gorman said. “We can be opportunistic in terms of some of the acquisitions, but it generally will be through organic growth.”

Victoria Moores

Victoria Moores joined Air Transport World as our London-based European Editor/Bureau Chief on 18 June 2012. Victoria has nearly 20 years’ aviation industry experience, spanning airline ground operations, analytical, journalism and communications roles.