Los Angeles based aircraft leasing company Air Lease Corporation (ALC) has grabbed headlines on the first day of the 2011 Paris Airshow by revealing orders and commitments for up to 110 commercial jets, including up to 50 Airbus A320neo-family aircraft, 12 other Airbus airliners, up to 33 Boeing jetliners and 15 Embraer E-Jets.
Air Lease Corporation signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) at the 49th Le Bourget Airshow on June 20 for 50 A320neo-family aircraft, the total including 14 options. The agreement was signed by Steven Udvar-Hazy, ALC’s chairman and CEO, and John Leahy, Airbus’ chief operating officer, customers.
The leasing company also announced first orders for 11 Airbus A330-family widebodies and one A321.
“This new order enables ALC to continue to offer its customers the most fuel efficient aircraft in the short and medium to long haul segments. The A320neo family represents the industry’s new single-aisle benchmark and we look forward to seeing our customers benefitting from the cost savings it promises to deliver,” said Udvar-Hazy. “The A330 family offers excellent economics in the mid-size widebody category today making it the ideal aircraft, right now and therefore an absolute must for the growth of ALC’s portfolio.”
ALC previously ordered a total of 51 A320-family aircraft (30 A320s and 21 A321s) from Airbus, of which four A320s have been delivered. With this new order, ALC’s cumulative orders and commitments for new Airbus aircraft will reach 99 aircraft (52 A320-family, 36 A320neo-family and 11 A330-family aircraft.
Meanwhile, Boeing announced at the Paris Airshow that ALC had agreed to buy up to 33 of the U.S.-based company jetliners. The agreement calls for 14 firm orders and four options for 737-800s, as well as five 777-300ERs and four Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners. ALC has also agreed to exercise options on six 737NGs that formed part of last year’s agreement to order 60 737-800s.
Boeing says it looks forward to finalizing the details of the agreement, at which time the orders will be posted to the Boeing Orders & Deliveries website.
“We continue to build the foundation of our growing commercial lease fleet with these Next-Generation 737s, 777-300ERs and 787 Dreamliners,” said Udvar-Hazy. “These modern, fuel-efficient airplanes will provide our airline clients the capabilities to perform their missions in the most economical, reliable and environmentally responsible manner.”
Elsewhere at the Paris Airshow, Embraer revealed ALC had increased the original E-Jet order it had signed after the Farnborough Air Show last year. The original contract covered 15 firm Embraer 190s plus options on five more. ALC exercised the five options, subsequently added other five aircraft, and is now adding five additional firm Embraer 190s, bringing its current contract with Embraer to 30 E-Jets – 25 Embraer 190s and five Embraer 175s.
“Our repeat order of E-Jets reflects the strong demand we continue to see from our airline customers around the world,” remarks Udvar-Hazy. “With over 1,000 firm orders and a growing customer base on every continent, we see E-Jets playing an important role in our fleet expansion in the coming years.”
Air Lease Corporation has placed its inventory of E-Jets with customers in five countries: Alitalia (10 aircraft); TRIP Linhas Aéreas of Brazil (six); Bulgaria Air (four); Kenya Airways (three), and Air Astana of Kazakhstan (two). The placement of the remaining five aircraft has not been disclosed.
Sales of Embraer E-Jets have now surpassed 1,000 firm orders, the Brazilian manufacturer revealed on June 20 The aircraft have been selected by 60 customers in 40 countries. Embraer has delivered more than 750 E-Jets in the seven years since the first aircraft entered revenue service. According to Embraer, this makes the E-Jets family one of the three most successful new-aircraft programs in the history of commercial aviation.