Aero Asset’s Q3 Preowned Helicopter Market Trends show improving conditions

posted on 14th October 2019 by Eddie Saunders
Aero Asset’s Q3 Preowned Helicopter Market Trends show improving conditions

International helicopter brokerage, Aero Asset, releases its third quarter 2019 Preowned Helicopter Market Trends  this week.   Timed just ahead of the NBAA-BACE Convention in Las Vegas, its latest report shows North America as the most active region.   A total 37% of pre-owned twin engine helicopter buyers were in this territory Q3, up from 31% in Q2.

Year to date (YTD), 85 twin turbine helicopters closed to retail buyers (across all weight classes) and twin engine supply for sale is down nearly 20% to 230 aircraft, the report highlighted.

Drawing on its proprietary intelligence and close knowledge of the market, Preowned Heli Market Trends reviews Q3 and YTD performance of twelve twin engine models in the light, medium and heavy categories, from Airbus Helicopters H135 to Sikorsky’s S92.   Preowned helicopter markets are ranked by retail sales volume and absorption rates.

Light twin market led by Airbus

The EC135/145 market continues to dominate resale activity, especially in the 2006 to 2014 year of manufacture segment.  Much of the demand is driven by US air ambulance appetite for Pratt & Whitney Canada powered SP-IFR machines. The report highlights six EC135 and seven EC145 deals pending at the end of Q3.  

Light twin helicopter supply is down 17% year-on-year (YOY) and so is trading volume equating to a stable absorption rate.

Leonardo AW109 markets suffered a substantial drop in Grand & GrandNew preowned transaction activity.  However, in contrast with YTD sales volume, Q3 is clearly an anomaly.  Power retail sales volume remains stable.

Lower pricing triggered increased demand for the Bell 429, with three retail trades in Q3.  However, a total of four retail trades YTD means the Bell 429 absorption rate remains higher than competing markets.  

AW139 dominates the medium twin market

The Leonardo AW139 leads the preowned medium twin market, with five retail sales in Q3 and ten YTD. Supply continued its decrease year on year to 22 aircraft for sale at the end of Q3. This equates to an absorption rate of just 14 months. Absorption rate has seen a significant drop YOY – good news for the manufacturer, which recently delivered its 1,000th AW139.

The Bell 412 market remains soft with zero transactions in Q3 and only three YTD.  Supply in the Airbus H155 market doubled in Q3 and absorption rate remains high with three years of supply at Q3 trade levels.  

Sales volume in the Sikorsky S76C+/C++ market was flat in Q3. Sales volume is up YOY, but oversupply continues to hamper the C+ and the utility segments of this market.

Increased activity in the heavy twin market

The H225 saw one sale per quarter YTD. This consistent sales volume suggests a better market outlook. With sixteen units for sale however, absorption rate remains high at four years of supply at Q3 trade levels. Five deals are currently pending.

The S92 market saw its first preowned transaction in five years and supply in this market continued to decrease Q3, down 50% YTD.