The Japanese banking giant Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group has launched a new aviation finance business in the Americas and has named aircraft finance veteran Olivier Trauchessec managing director of the unit.

The $2.9 trillion-asset MUFG, which is the parent company for MUFG Union Bank in San Francisco, has a global aviation finance group. It said in a press release that the addition of a New York-based team — responsible for activities across North America and South America — complements its existing aviation finance hubs in Tokyo, Hong Kong, Singapore and London.

Asked on Wednesday about MUFG's plan to expand in aviation — at a time when some, such as CIT Group, are opting to exit that sector — President and Chief Executive Nobuyuki Hirano said the company is looking to diversify its revenue. It is also looking to increase its activity in the United States, which it views as one of its two most promising growth markets along with Southeast Asia.

Trauchessec joins MUFG from BNP Paribas, where he was in charge of global origination and structuring for aircraft finance transactions. He will report to Lance Markowitz, group head of leasing and asset finance in the Americas, a unit of MUFG's Investment Banking & Markets group.

Trauchessec began his career at BNP Paribas in 1994 and created its New York-based aviation desk for the Americas in 2000. He was responsible for the product coverage of airlines and aircraft leasing companies, in addition to all aviation finance activities.

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