Boeing ends sales drought, announcing first new airplane orders in three months

Posted June 21, 2019

The American Airlines deal could give Boeing more incentive to push ahead with the NMA.

Boeing Chairman and CEO Dennis Muilenburg on Sunday said he expected to announce orders for wide-body jets at the Paris show, but his main focus at the event was safety.

With the Max grounded since March after two deadly crashes, this year's biennial event was supposed to be dominated by Airbus.

Australia's Qantas Airways said on Wednesday it would order 10 Airbus A321XLR jets and convert a further 26 from existing orders already on the planemaker's books.

By Tuesday evening, Boeing had still not written a single firm order, according to Airfinance Journal's tally, although it has received commitments for 220 planes, substantially more than the 49 firm orders and 68 commitments received by arch-rival Airbus.

"The incredible extended range of the A321XLR allows us to evaluate even more overseas destinations as we think about JetBlue's expansion into European markets plagued by high premium fares and subpar service", said Robin Hayes, chief executive officer, JetBlue.

The jets will be allocated to Hungary's Wizz Air, US carrier Frontier Airlines and Chile's JetSMART, in which Indigo Partners owns stakes.

Cebu Air Inc ordered 31 aircraft from Airbus SE worth US$6.8 billion as the Philippines' largest budget carrier targets an all-new fleet in five years.

"Moreover, Le Bourget saw successes for the A220 which won new business for 85 aircraft, and for the widebody A330neo for which Airbus received orders and commitments for 24 new aircraft".

"The global air freight market is forecast to double over the next 20 years, and the 777 Freighter's market-leading capabilities and economics will help China Airlines extend their network and grow their cargo business", said Ihssane Mounir, senior vice president of Commercial Sales and Marketing of Boeing.

The A321XLR is expected to enter service in 2023.

The two sides also traded blows over competition for wide-body jets, with each scoring key wins in Asia.

Wrapping up the world's largest air show today, Airbus publicly voiced its frustration over the deal and urged IAG to run a competition for the planes, which would be deployed at Vueling, Iberia, Aer Lingus, Level and part of BA.