Our Haute 100 list details the accomplishments of the most influential people in each of our markets—Miami, New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. These people continue to make moves, so rather than waiting for the next Haute 100 issue to come out, we thought we’d provide you with regular updates on those Haute 100 members who are making headlines. After spending six months in retirement, Steven Udvar-Hazy is back with a vengeance in the aircraft leasing business.
Industry: International Lease Finance Corp.
What Makes Him Haute: Watch planes taking off at most airports around the world, and you are probably looking at planes owned by Steven Udvar-Hazy. International Lease Finance Corp., which he founded with the Gondas, is one of the world’s largest aircraft leasers. His $66 million donation led to the Steven Udvar-Hazy Center of the National Air & Space Museum at the Smithsonian Institute.
What Makes Him Haute Now: Retirement isn’t appealing to everyone. “Three hours into retirement, I was restless. I just decided that I didn’t want to be retired at the beach” said Udvar-Hazy. After a six month hiatus he is back to his lucrative business of leasing aircrafts with a new start-up company, Air Lease Corp., or ALC. Hazy recently purchased 51 Airbus airliners and 54 of the familiar 737 commercial jets for ALC. The 51 Airbuses are reportedly worth $4.4 billion while the 737s can cost up to $87 million each, totaling another $4.4 billion in purchases. Only last week Udvar-Hazy announced that ALC was able to secure $3.3 billion in financing, which he plans to spend on 125 commercial planes by next spring. Competitors beware, Udvar-Hazy is back in business and ready to regain his position as leader in aircraft leasing.