Paul is a partner in the Singapore office of Milbank LLP. He is a member of the global Transportation and Space Practice and leads the aviation and asset finance practice in Asia. Prior to joining Milbank, Paul was the global head of aviation for an international law firm based in Singapore.
Primary Focus & Experience
Paul has helmed some of the most complex and first-in-the industry asset backed structured and receivables financings. He has an in-depth understanding of the financing and leasing of aviation and maritime assets, rolling stock and other moveable assets and extensive experience of financing of such assets, including tax-based, leveraged Islamic and export credit. He regularly acts major lenders, operating and finance lessors, borrowers, lessees and arrangers in a wide range of banking, finance and leasing transactions for over 20 years.
Paul has led the teams on several landmark and industry leading transactions and his experience includes advising:
- AirAsia Berhad, Asia's largest low-cost airline, in the financing of a portfolio of 14 CFM-56 spare engines by France-based, Crédit Agricole Corporate & Investment Bank.
- Vietjet in a US$3.58 billion transaction to purchase 215 aircraft engines from joint French-American maker CFM.
- Vietjet Aviation in its $2.39 billion agreement to purchase at least 20 A321 passenger jets from Airbus Group SE.
- Placement agents in the US$170 initial public offering by Vietnam’s leading budget airline, VietJet Aviation Joint Stock Company. This was the first internationally marketed IPO in Vietnam’s history.
- China Southern, the largest carrier in China in the restructuring of 13 operating leases with Air Lease Corp to allow our client to take advantage of new free trade zones in Tianjin, China.
- Minsheng Financial Leasing in relation to a financing for pre-delivery payments (PDP financing) for Korean Air.
- Bank of Communications Financial Leasing Co. (BOCFL) on the financing of a six-year lease of four jet engines to Korean Air Lines. The transaction had the added complexity of being denominated in euros—the first such euro-denominated lease financing from a China-based financier. This deal won the “Innovation Award” at the 2016 China Air Finance Development Summit.
- PT Lion Mentari on its $24 billion acquisition of over 230 Airbus aircraft, one of the largest commercial aircraft orders of all time.
- AirAsia the largest low cost carrier in Asia, on a complex multi-tiered Islamic financing of a French tax leasing vehicle for the acquisition of up to eight A320 Airbus aircraft (worth over $500 million based on catalogue prices), the first such financing to be successfully completed in Asia. This transaction was named by Airfinance Journal as "Innovative Deal of the Year".
- China’s ICBC Leasing on a complex multi-tiered financing of up to three new Airbus aircraft for operations with Aeroflot through the Russian State Transport Leasing Company. This was unique for being the first Sino-Soviet cooperation of leasing companies for the leasing aviation assets.
- Vietjet on its $9 billion acquisition of 92 Airbus aircraft and $800 million order of CFM engines.
- Eight A320 Airbus aircraft to be operated by China Southern Airlines. This was the first Japanese operating lease financing to be successfully completed in China. This transaction was named by Airfinance Journal as "Asia Pacific Deal of the Year".
Recognition & Accomplishments
Paul is consistently listed as a Band 1 lawyer for Aviation: Finance in Chambers Asia Pacific, and Chambers Global, including in the most recent editions. He is also recognized as a Leading Individual for Asset Finance in Singapore by Legal 500. Paul is regularly recognized by Best Lawyers for his work in aviation in Singapore and was named as one of the “Best of the Best” top 30 aviation practitioners in the world by Who’s Who Legal. Paul is also named as a leading Islamic finance adviser in relation to transportation matters by Islamic Finance News.
In the most recent edition of Chambers Asia Pacific, Paul was described by clients as “king of the low-cost carriers”, “an asset to his firm” and recognized for “his proficiency in complex, innovative finance and leasing structures.”
Paul speaks several Chinese dialects including Mandarin, Teochew and Cantonese.
- University of London, LL.B.
- England and Wales