Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, & Division President - TechOps
Nicolas Finazzo founded AerSale in 2008 and has served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer since inception. He also serves as Division President - TechOps, which focuses on the Company’s growing MRO and Engineered Solutions products. From 1997 to 2008, Mr. Finazzo was Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of AeroTurbine, Inc., a leading private non-OEM affiliated aftermarket supplier of aircraft and engine products and MRO service provider. Mr. Finazzo together with his business partner, Robert Nichols, successfully grew this Company to become a premium integrated global aviation supplier and sold it to Cerberus in 2006, where it was merged into AerCap Holdings (NYSE: AER). Mr. Finazzo worked for AerCap for several years to integrate the operations and successfully transitioned his responsibilities to a successor management team.
In 1997, Mr. Finazzo was Vice President & General Counsel of AeroThrust, Inc., an MRO service provider for commercial jet aircraft engines. From 1991 to 1997, Mr. Finazzo was Vice President & General Counsel of International Air Leases, Inc., an integrated aircraft leasing company. From 1987 to 1991, Mr. Finazzo was Vice President of Contracts for Greenwich Air Services, a commercial jet engine MRO service provider. From 1981 to 1987, Mr. Finazzo was the founder and President of Southern Express Airways, Inc., a commuter airline operating in the United States as part of the Air Florida commuter network.
Mr. Finazzo has a J.D. degree from the University of Miami School of Law and a B.S. degree in Political Science from the University of Michigan. He is a member in good standing of the Florida Bar and holds an FAA Airframe and Powerplant license.
In 2019 Mr. Finazzo was honored to receive the Wright Brothers Memorial Award from the Greater Miami Aviation Association. The Wright Brothers Memorial award is presented to individuals who have demonstrated innovation, vision, perseverance, and have transformed their industry segment.
Robert B. Nichols
Vice Chairman, Division President, Asset Management Solutions and Director
Robert B. Nichols founded AerSale in 2008 and has served as the Executive Vice Chairman since January 2019. He has also served as Division President, Asset Management since December 2019. From 2008 to 2017, Mr. Nichols served as Chief Operating Officer of AerSale, and was key in developing AerSale’s integrated asset management model.
Mr. Nichols together with his business partner, Nicolas Finazzo, founded AeroTurbine, Inc. and successfully grew this Company to become a premium integrated global aviation supplier, which was later sold it to Cerberus and merged into AerCap Holdings (NYSE: AER). Mr. Nichols worked for AerCap for several years to help integrate the operations, and successfully transition his responsibility to the successor management team.
Mr Nichols began his aviation in career in 1982 where he would serve as an Account Manager for the Heavy Turbine Division of Aviall, Inc. (Now a part of GE Engine Services). He went on to become Director of Engine Sales and Leasing for Greenwich Air Services in 1990 (Now a part of GE Engine Services) prior to joining AeroThrust Corporation, where he would serve as Vice President of Engine Sales & Leasing until leaving to co-found AeroTurbine in 1997.
Mr. Nichols is a graduate of the University of Texas at Dallas, where he earned a B.S. in Business Administration, and is a licensed commercial aircraft pilot.
Sai S. Devabhaktuni
Sai S. Devabhaktuni is Co-Founder and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Monocle Acquisition Corporation (“Monocle”; NASDAQ: MNCL), whose business combination with AerSale was consummated in 2020. Prior to Monocle, Mr. Devabhaktuni was Head of Corporate Distressed Portfolio Management at Pacific Investment Management Company (“PIMCO”). While at PIMCO, Mr. Devabhaktuni served in various capacities on investment committees of numerous investment funds. Prior to PIMCO, and from 1998 to 2010, he was a Managing Principal at MHR Fund Management LLC (“MHR”) where he was involved in all aspects of the investment process and worked closely with senior management teams of portfolio companies on operational improvements and growth initiatives. Prior to MHR, Mr. Devabhaktuni was a member of the event-driven strategies group at Highbridge Capital Management LLC, and a member of the corporate finance, capital markets and emerging markets groups of Nomura Securities.
Mr. Devabhaktuni holds a Bachelor of Science in Economics, with concentrations in Finance, Economics and Legal Studies from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Mr. Devabhaktuni has served on the Board of Directors of Loral Space & Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ: LORL) and Applied Natural Gas Fuels Inc., and currently serves on the Board of Directors of Sequa Corporation.
General C. Robert Kehler
General C. Robert Kehler, USAF (ret), has served as a director of Monocle Acquisition Corp since its prospectus. . He has 43 years of leadership, strategy and governance experience related to military operations of the United States of America. General Kehler currently serves on the board of directors of Maxar Technologies Ltd. (Ticker: MAXR) and Inmarsat plc (Ticker: ISAT LN), and is a trustee of the Mitre Corporation, a senior advisor to McKinsey and Company and special advisor to EaglePicher Technologies, LLC.
General Kehler retired from the United States Air Force in December 2013 after almost 39 years of distinguished service. From January 2011 until November 2013, he served as the Commander, United States Strategic Command (“USSTRATCOM”), where he was directly responsible to the Secretary of Defense and President for the plans and operations of all U.S. forces conducting strategic deterrence, nuclear alert, global strike, space, cyberspace and associated operations. Prior to commanding USSTRATCOM, General Kehler commanded United States Air Force Space Command and two operational space wings conducting space launch, missile warning, and space control missions. He also commanded an intercontinental ballistic missile squadron and group.
General Kehler entered the Air Force in 1975 as a Distinguished Graduate of the Pennsylvania State University R.O.T.C. program, has master’s degrees in Public Administration and National Security and Strategic Studies, and completed executive development programs at Carnegie-Mellon University, Syracuse University, and Harvard University. His military awards include the Defense Distinguished and Superior Service Medals, the Distinguished Service Medal (2 awards), Legion of Merit (3 awards), and the French Legion of Honor (Officer). General Kehler was the S.T. Lee Distinguished Lecturer at Stanford University’s Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies for academic year 2014 – 2015, and remains an Affiliate of Stanford’s Center for International Security and Cooperation. He is a Senior Fellow of the National Defense University.
Michael Kirton currently serves as Partner with Leonard Green which he joined in 2007. Before joining Leonard Green, he worked in the Investment Banking Division of Credit Suisse First Boston as a Generalist. Mr. Kirton currently serves on the boards of Charter Next Generation, FineLine Technologies, ProMach, Pure Gym, The Wrench Group, and Troon Golf. Mr. Kirton previously served on the Board of Directors of Authentic Brands Group, Lucky Brand, and PDC Brands. Mr. Kirton brings knowledge and experience in finance and broad-based experience in the leadership of middle-market businesses.
Mr. Kirton earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Honors Business Administration from the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario.
Peter Nolan is the founder and Chairman of Nolan Capital, the holding company for his Family office that makes long term investments in growth-oriented companies. Mr. Nolan is also a senior advisor to Leonard Green & Partners, L.P., a private equity firm, and was previously a managing partner of Leonard Green & Partners. During his time at Leonard Green, the firm completed 100 principal investments and grew Assets Under Management from $500 million in 1997 to $38 billion today.
Prior to becoming a partner at Leonard Green & Partners in 1997, Mr. Nolan served as a managing director and the Co-Head of Donaldson, Lufkin and Jenrette’s Los Angeles Investment Banking Division from 1990 to 1997. During his time at DLJ, Mr. Nolan helped to build the LA based investment bank to the largest regional presence in the country. Prior to DLJ, Mr. Nolan had served as a First Vice President in corporate finance at Drexel Burnham Lambert from 1986 to 1990, and as a Vice President at Prudential Securities, Inc. from 1982 to 1986. Prior to 1982, Mr. Nolan was an associate at Manufacturers Hanover Trust Company.
Mr. Nolan presently services as Chairman of Diamond Wipes International, Ortega National Parks, and Fresh Brothers. He currently services on the Board of Directors of Activision and AerSale. Peter has also serviced in various other boards including Aspen Dental Management, FTD Group, The Palms Hotel and Casino, Scitor Corporation, and the Supervisory Board of Adidas AG.
Mr. Nolan is a Trustee Emeritus and was Vice Chairman of the Executive Committee for Cornell University, and is currently a member of the Investment Committee for the University’s endowment. Mr. Nolan earned a B.S. of Science degree in Agricultural Economics and Finance from Cornell University and an M.B.A. from the Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University.
Jonathan Seiffer currently serves as Senior Partner with Leonard Green & Partners, L.P. (“Leonard Green”), a private equity firm which is one of AerSale’s significant shareholders, which he joined in 1994. Before joining Leonard Green, he worked in corporate finance at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette. Mr. Seiffer currently serves on the boards of AerSale, Signet Jewelers Limited, Authentic Brands Group, Caliber Collision Centers, Mister Car Wash and SRS Distribution. Mr. Seiffer’s previous board positions include Arrow Group Industries, Big 5 Sporting Goods, BJ’s Wholesale Club, The Tire Rack, Varsity Brands, and Whole Foods Market.
Mr. Seiffer brings knowledge and experience in finance, and broad-based experience in the leadership of distribution businesses. Mr. Seiffer earned a B.S. in Systems Engineering and a B.S. in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania.
Richard J. Townsend
Richard J. Townsend has served as the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Monocle Acquisition Corporation (“Monocle”; NASDAQ: MNCL), whose business combination with AerSale was consummated in 2020. Mr. Townsend brings 40 years of knowledge and experience in finance, strategy and operations.
Prior to Monocle, Mr. Townsend was a Managing Partner at Rangeley Capital (“Rangeley”), with responsibilities as a Portfolio Manager and Chief Operating Officer from 2008 to 2017, and subsequently as an Advisory Partner. Prior to Rangeley, Mr. Townsend was Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Loral Space & Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ: LORL) from 1998 to 2007, where he was responsible for all financial aspects of the business. From 1996 to 1998, Mr. Townsend served as the Corporate Controller and Director of Strategy of ITT Industries (NYSE: ITT). Mr. Townsend spent the prior 17 years in various roles in operations and financial Management at IBM (NYSE: IBM), including serving as Controller for EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) in France. Prior to IBM, Mr. Townsend was a mechanical engineer at General Electric’s Nuclear Energy Division (NYSE: GE).
Mr. Townsend holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan, a Master of Science degree in Engineering from the University of California at Berkeley and an MBA from Stanford University.
Eric J. Zahler
Eric J. Zahler has served as Co-Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of Monocle Acquisition Corporation (NASDAQ: MNCL), whose business combination with AerSale was consummated in 2020. He has over 35 years of senior leadership, strategy, operations, and governance experience with aerospace and defense companies. Until 2018, Mr. Zahler was a Co-Founder and Managing Director of Sagamore Capital, a private equity firm pursuing investments in the aerospace and defense, industrial electronics, and selected business service markets. Prior to founding Sagamore Capital. Mr. Zahler was President and Chief Operating Officer of Loral Space & Communications, Inc. for eight years and also served on Loral’s Board of Directors. Mr. Zahler was a senior member of the management of Loral since 1992.
Mr. Zahler is a member of the Board of Directors of Maxar Technologies (NYSE: MAXR; TSX: MAXR), a leading global provider of advanced space technology solutions for commercial and government markets. He is also Chairman of the Board of exactEarth Ltd. (TSX: XCT), a leading provider of global vessel tracking data for maritime situational awareness, and a member of the Board of Directors of Sequa Corporation, a portfolio company of The Carlyle Group, which provides the global airline industry with a broad range of aftermarket services.
From 1975 to 1992, Mr. Zahler was an attorney at Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson, where he was elected Partner in 1983. At Fried, Frank, he represented numerous aerospace and defense companies in all aspects of their interactions with the U.S. government. Mr. Zahler holds a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics from Yale University and a law degree from Harvard Law School.