General Electric has expanded its corporate-aircraft financing portfolio by acquiring loans and leases worth almost $1 billion on about 380 business jets, turboprops and helicopters from CIT Group.

About $700 million in loans and $200 million in leases will be integrated into GE Commercial Finance’s corporate aircraft business, which includes the business jet financing portfolio acquired from Bombardier in August 2003.

CIT retains a corporate-aircraft portfolio worth about $500 million, including fractional shares for NetJets customers and aircraft leased to selected clients. This will transfer to CIT Aerospace, which has a portfolio of over 300 commercial and regional aircraft and will continue to finance fractional shares and select corporate aircraft.

GE says the acquisition expands its market reach, diversifies its customer base and creates opportunities to sell other equipment-financing services. CIT says the sale will allow it to redeploy capital to higher-returning businesses.

Source: Flight International