Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Norwegian Air Shuttle Makes Huge Aircraft Order

The Wall Street Journal

STOCKHOLM—Norwegian Air Shuttle has placed a huge order for new Boeing and Airbus jetliners to replace and expand its growing fleet, including firm orders for aircraft with a total value at list price of 127 billion Norwegian kroner ($21.58 billion).

A Norwegian Air Shuttle Boeing 737-800 is seen in the air near Oslo Airport in this July 17, 2009 file photo.

The Oslo-based carrier said it wants to replace existing planes with more fuel-efficient aircraft and add capacity for future growth in ordering a total of 372 aircraft, of which 222 are on firm order.

"Our order is the biggest order placed by a European airline ever and a milestone in Norwegian's 10-year history," said Bjorn Kjos, chief executive of Norwegian, in a statement.

Norwegian said the firm orders are for 22 Boeing 737-800, 100 Boeing 737 MAX8 and 100 Airbus A320neo aircraft, and the agreement includes purchase rights for an additional 100 Boeing 737 MAX8 and 50 Airbus A320neo. Aircraft deliveries are due to start in 2016.

Norwegian, the third biggest no-frills carrier in Europe after Ryanair and easyJet, currently has a total of 62 Boeing 737-800 and 737-300 aircraft in its fleet. The company placed an order for 42 new Boeing 737-800s in 2007, which it later increased to 63, excluding the six Boeing 787 Dreamliners it also ordered recently.

"The order is in line with Norwegian's established strategy of continuously striving for the lowest cost in the company's markets which includes operating the most fuel and cost efficient aircraft," the carrier said in a statement. 
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