About | AerCap

Our History

Over 40 years legacy of growth and innovation. 

AerCap is the global leader in aircraft leasing and aviation finance with a legacy spanning more than 40 years, from the two founders of aircraft leasing: Guinness Peat Aviation (GPA) established in 1975 and International Lease Finance Corporation (ILFC) established in 1973.

  • 1973

    The first transaction: purchase of a used National Airlines McDonnell Douglas DC-8 and its lease to Aeromexico.

    International Lease Finance Corporation ("ILFC") is established.

  • 1975

    Guinness Peat Aviation ("GPA") is established.

  • 1977

    Delivery of the first new Boeing jet, a 737-204A.

  • 1978

    Delivery of the first new widebody jet, DC-10-30.

  • 1981

    Delivery of the first new McDonnell Douglas MD-82.

  • 1983

    ILFC's Initial Public Offering.

  • 1984

    Announcement of the first large scale order placed with OEMs by a leasing company - an order for 10 Boeing 737-300s.

  • 1988

    Announcement of the largest new aircraft order in history - 130 aircraft from Airbus and Boeing.

    The 767-200ER was the first 767 to complete a non-stop transatlantic journey, and broke the flying distance record for a twinjet airliner on April 17, 1988 with an Air Mauritius flight from Halifax, Nova Scotia to Port Louis, Mauritius, covering 8,727 nmi (10,000 mi; 16,200 km).

  • 1990

    ILFC is acquired by American International Group (AIG).

    Announcement of an order for 700 new aircraft, values at $17 billion at list prices.

  • 1991

    Delivery of the first new Boeing 747-400 jumbo jet on lease to Cathay Pacific Airways.

  • 1992

    GPA's Initial Public Offering.

  • 1993

    GPA is restructured through partial sale of aircraft to GECAS.

    Launch customer of the Airbus A319, with the first order for six A319 aircraft.

  • 1994

    Delivery of the first and only Boeing 747-400 on lease to Air New Zealand

    Test flight of the Boeing 777 in June. The 777 was the first jetliner to be 100% digitally designed. It has the longest range capability of any commercial airplane and is the most popular twin-aisle aircraft of all time with more than 1,600 orders worldwide.

  • 1995

    First leased aircraft placement in China of the Airbus A320 on lease to China Hainan Airlines.

  • 1996

    First leasing company to lease an Airbus A330 aircraft to Malaysia Airlines.

    GPA sells 229 aircraft, continuing to consolidate its position.

  • 1997

    Delivery of the first Airbus A321 on lease to Middle East Airlines.

    Delivery of the first Boeing 757-200 to China Southern.

  • 1998

    GPA becomes AerFi as part of Texas Pacific Group deal.

    Delivery of the first Airbus A330-200.

    Delivery of the first Boeing 737 Next Generation in China on lease to Shanghai Airlines.

  • 1999

    AerFi acquires Indigo Aviation, a Swedish aircraft lessor.

    Delivery of the 1,000th Airbus A320 Family aircraft, an A319, on lease to Air France.

  • 2000

    debis AirFinance acquires AerFi, with a fleet of 104 aircraft.

  • 2001

    Delivery of the first Boeing 777 on lease to Asiana Airlines.

    First leasing company to lease a Boeing 737-800 aircraft to Shanghai Airlines.

  • 2002

    First lease placement in China of an Airbus A340-600 aircraft, on lease to Cathay Pacific.

  • 2003

    ILFC becomes the largest aircraft lessor in the world measured by fleet value ($27.5 billion).

  • 2004

    Delivery of the first Airbus A330-200, on lease to Yemenia Airlines.

  • 2005

    debis AirFinance is acquired by Cerberus Capital and is subsequently renamed AerCap.

    Delivery of the first Boeing 777-300ER on lease to Emirates.

  • 2006

    AerCap’s Initial Public Offering on the New York Stock Exchange.

  • 2007

    Announcement of an order for 50 Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft, making the lessor the largest customer of the aircraft type with 74 on order.

  • 2008

    Delivery of 400th Boeing 737, a 737-800.

    Delivery of 700th new Boeing 777, a 777-300ER, on lease to Cathay Pacific Airways.

    Launch customer for the Airbus A320/A321 passenger to freighter ("P2F") conversion programe.

    Delivery of the first new Airbus A330 and its sale to Waha Capital.

  • 2009

    First flight of Boeing 787 Dreamliner in December. The aircraft features the largest windows of any commercial airplane in the world and 50% of its primary structure is made of advanced composite materials. Since its launch the 787 has opened more than 150 new, non-stop routes.

  • 2010

    AerCap acquires Genesis Lease Limited.

    AerCap takes delivery of its 100th Airbus aircraft.

  • 2011

    Announcement of an order for 100 Airbus A320neo Family aircraft, with 50 options. AerCap becomes the launch customer of the Airbus A320neo aircraft.

  • 2012

    AerCap launches AerDragon, a joint venture with the Chinese government aircraft procurement agency CASC and Credit Agricole. The venture comprises Dragon Aviation Leasing Company Limited, based in Beijing, People's Republic of China, and AerDragon Aviation Partners Limited, based in Shannon, Co Clare, Ireland.

    Lease of first Airbus A320neo aircraft to Spirit Airlines.

    Signing of a lease agreement for six A330-300s with Air Asia X.

    July: The Boeing 737 became the first-ever commercial jet airplane to surpass the 10,000 orders milestone. A Boeing 737 takes off or lands every 1.5 seconds.

  • 2013

    AerCap announces intention to acquire ILFC from AIG.

    First lessor to take delivery of the first Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

    AerCap becomes the launch lessor customer of the Embraer E-Jets E2.

  • 2014

    In May, AerCap completes acquisition of ILFC from AIG.

    AerCap exercises options to purchase 50 A320neo Family aircraft from Airbus, bringing the order book of A320neo Family to a total of 200 aircraft.

    Delivery of the first Boeing 787 Dreamliner, on lease to Royal Jordanian.

  • 2015

    First A350 XWB touches down in Ireland, marking announcement by AerCap of 100 new highly skilled jobs in Ireland.

    Addition of the first Airbus A350XWB to AerCap's fleet, on lease to Vietnam Airlines, the world's second operator of the A350 XWB.

    Signing of an agreement with Boeing for an order of 100 Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft, at the Paris Air Show 2015, with deliveries starting in 2019.

    Agreement signed with China Southern, the largest airline in both Asia and the People's Republic of China, for the lease of 24 Airbus A320neo Family aircraft.

  • 2016

    Delivery of the first of two new Airbus A350 aircraft to Ethiopian Airlines, marking the first Airbus A350 XWB delivery to an African carrier. AerCap President and Chief Commercial Officer, Mr. Philip Scruggs presents a gift to Ethiopian Airlines Chief Executive Officer Mr. Tewolde GebreMariam.

    AerCap and Boeing celebrate delivery of Air France’s first Boeing 787 Dreamliner. The milestone delivery signifies AerCap’s 50th 787 delivery and Boeing’s 500th Dreamliner to come off its production line.

    Signing ceremony with US-Bangla for the lease of four 737-800s which took place in Dhaka.

    Signing ceremony of the lease of the first A350 for Sichuan Airlines on the occasion of the airline's 30-year anniversary celebration.

    AerCap relocates its headquarters to Dublin, Ireland. The company has had a presence in Dublin and Shannon for many years. Ireland has been the global leader in aircraft leasing since the founding of the industry in the 1970s.

    Delivery of the first new A350 XWB on lease to LATAM – the first of nine new A350s to be delivered by AerCap to the airline. 

    Delivery of the first Airbus A320neo on lease to Spirit Airlines – the first U.S. airline to receive the aircraft type.


    Delivery of the first of two new Airbus A350 XWB aircraft to Cathay Pacific Airways.

    Delivery of the first Airbus A320neo on lease to Volaris – the first carrier in North America to operate the aircraft type.

    Delivery of the first Airbus A320neo on lease to China Southern Airlines – the first carrier in China to operate the aircraft type.

  • 2017

    AerCap signs a lease agreement for 20 new aircraft with Chinese carrier Loong Air.

    Delivery of first 787-9 Dreamliner to Norwegian Airlines.


    AerCap places an order for 30 787-9 Dreamliners at the 2017 Paris Air Show. The agreement, valued at $8.1 billion at list prices, makes AerCap the largest customer for the 787 Dreamliner.

    Signing ceremony between AerCap and Bhutan Airlines for the lease of two A319 (2010 Vintage) aircraft.

    AerCap delivers the first of four new Airbus A350 aircraft to Hong Kong Airlines.

    AerCap CEO Aengus Kelly takes part in a signing ceremony where a Memorandum of Understanding is signed between AerCap and China Southern Airlines.

    Delivery of the first A350-900 to Air Caraibes, making the airline the first French carrier to operate the aircraft type. 

    AerCap becomes the only independent lessor to hold Investment Grade rating with three rating agencies: Standard & Poor's, Fitch Ratings and Moody’s.

    AerCap delivers the first of two new Airbus A350s to Air Mauritius.

    Delivery of a Boeing 787-9 to Hainan Airlines, which signifies AerCap’s first 787-9 to deliver to the airline and its 55th delivery of the aircraft type.

    AerCap signs a lease agreement for two 737 MAX aircraft with Neos, making the airline the first Italian 737 MAX operator when it takes delivery of the airplane in 2019.

    Delivery of the first Airbus A321neo aircraft on lease to SriLankan Airlines, the first A321neo to enter the airline’s fleet.

    Delivery of the second A350 to Cathay Pacific.

    AerCap delivers the first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner to Ethiopian Airlines, making the airline the first airline in Africa to operate the 787-9.