At the Dubai Air Show, Dubai-based Emirates Airline has announced an order for 50 Boeing 777-300ERs plus options for an additional 20.
The order, which Boeing values at $18 billion at list prices, makes the new Emirates deal the single largest commercial aircraft order in Boeing’s history by dollar value, according to the manufacturer.
Emirates is certain to be paying nowhere near the $360 million unit cost per aircraft implied by the $18 billion order valuation – perhaps receiving a discount of up to 40 per cent on the aircraft because of its volume buy and history as the largest operator of the 777.
The Dubai carrier’s latest Boeing 777-300ER order also makes 2011 the best-selling year for the 777 program, surpassing the previous record of orders for 154 aircraft set in 2005. With the Emirates order, the 2011 net orderbook for the 777 currently stands at 182 aircraft. Boeing values Emirates’ options for 20 additional aircraft at $8 billion.
“The 777’s reliability, performance and operating economics have firmly established it as the backbone of our fleet,” said His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman and chief executive of Emirates Airline & Group. “We have an ambitious and strategic plan to continue growing our international network and especially increasing our long-haul, non-stop routes. This order supports our fleet expansion and reiterates our commitment to operating a modern fleet for the benefit of our passengers and to ensure operational efficiency as well.”
Emirates is the world’s largest Boeing 777 operator with a fleet of 94 777s through direct purchase and lease, plus additional unfilled orders on backlog for 41 777-300ERs previously on order. It is also the only airline in the world to operate every model in the Boeing 777 family, including the 777 Freighter.
Emirates took delivery of its first Boeing 777 – a 777-200 – in 1996 and since then the airline has deployed the 777 on short-, medium- and long-haul routes.
“This is an extremely proud moment for us as it not only underscores Emirates’ ongoing confidence in the 777 but also makes this the single largest order by dollar value in Boeing’s history,” said Jim Albaugh, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “As the largest operator of the 777 in the world, Emirates has played an important role in development of the airplane and its input over the years has been invaluable in the development of the 777 program.”
The Boeing 777 is the world’s most successful twin-engine, long-haul aircraft. The 777-300ER carries 365 passengers up to 7,930 nautical miles (14,685 kilometers), though Emirates operates some of its 777-300ERs in cabin configurations seating 427 or 442 passengers.