Exhibit 99.1

 

NEWS RELEASE

CONTACT:

 

Charles F. Willis
Chairman & CEO
(415) 408-4700

 

Willis Lease Finance Reports 2015 Pretax Profit Up 19.4% to $14.1 Million

 

NOVATO, CA — March 7, 2016 —

Willis Lease Finance Corporation (NASDAQ: WLFC), the premier independent jet engine lessor in the commercial finance sector, today reported pretax earnings for 2015 of $14.1 million, up 19.4% from $11.8 million in 2014.  Net income for 2015 was $7.4 million, or $0.92 cents per diluted share, compared to $7.2 million, or $0.89 per diluted share the prior year. Fourth quarter 2015 net income increased to $3.0 million, or $0.38 per diluted share, compared to a loss of $0.3 million, or $0.03 per diluted share, in the same quarter a year ago. The year ago quarter was impacted by a $2.7 million non-cash engines write-down and the expensing of a $3.5 million engine repair.

 

“I am pleased to report that on a pretax basis our financial performance in 2015 was the best since 2011,” said Charles F. Willis, Chairman and CEO.  “Our fourth quarter and full year results reflect a combination of improvements in utilization, greater trading activity and growth in the lease portfolio—all contributing to record total revenues of $200 million. I believe we have a lot of momentum going into 2016. Many of our customers are having record years as well, due in large part to the low cost of fuel. Demand for our engines remains strong. Our product and service offerings are expanding and should present opportunities for revenue growth in the future—this includes our end of life solutions business, Willis Aero, which is registering impressive growth.  Our joint ventures in China and Ireland are also continuing to grow and develop.  The market remains favorable for leasing and trading assets, and we are optimistic about the opportunities we see for the coming year.”

 

“In 2015, we achieved record levels of lease rent and maintenance reserve revenue, mainly due to higher utilization,” said Donald A. Nunemaker, President. “We placed a lot of focus on utilization improvement last year and the hard work paid off.  Our average utilization for 2015 reached 87%, which was the highest level achieved since 2009. Utilization for the fourth quarter of 2015 averaged 91%.  We have said before that our utilization is subject to upward and downward swings from quarter to quarter due to a variety of different factors, and it remains to be seen how long it can be held at historically high levels like the last two quarters of 2015.”

 

2015 Highlights (at or for the periods ended December 31, 2015, compared to December 31, 2014, and September 30, 2015):

 

·                  Total revenues grew 14.5% to $199.6 million in 2015, fueled by higher portfolio utilization, the growing lease portfolio and higher spare parts and equipment sales.  In the fourth quarter of 2015, revenues increased 32.8% to $55.2 million from $41.6 million in the year ago quarter.

·                  Average utilization in the fourth quarter of 2015 was sustained at 91%, equaling our performance in the previous quarter and a significant improvement from 82% reported in the year ago period. For 2015, average utilization improved to 87% from 83% in 2014. Utilization at year-end was 90% compared to 79% a year ago.

·                  Total engines and aircraft owned and managed have grown to nearly $1.5 billion.  The owned lease portfolio grew 5.3% in 2015 to $1.123 billion from $1.066 billion a year ago, with $171 million in

 


The following information was filed by Willis Lease Finance Corp (WLFC) on Tuesday, March 8, 2016 as an 8K 2.02 statement, which is an earnings press release pertaining to results of operations and financial condition. It may be helpful to assess the quality of management by comparing the information in the press release to the information in the accompanying 10-K Annual Report statement of earnings and operation as management may choose to highlight particular information in the press release.

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