By Andy Sambidge
Leasing firm finalises expanded order for A320neo planes with option for 30 more
Alafco, the Kuwait-based aviation leasing and financing company, said on Monday it has finalised an expanded order for 50 Airbus A320neo aircraft.
It has also taken options for 30 more to be finalised by year-end, Alafco said in a statement.
The contract, which was signed on Monday at the 2011 Dubai Airshow, is an increase of the initial deal inked at the Paris Le Bourget Airshow for 30 A320neo aircraft, the company added.
Alafco has already ordered a total of 26 A320s of which 25 have been delivered to date.
"The A320neo is the market's favourite single-aisle aircraft family," said Ahmed Al Zabin, Alafco chairman.
"The significant fuel burn savings it offers, combined with the operational reliability and cost effectiveness of the A320 family, make it an absolute 'must have' in our portfolio to meet the demand and the requirements of our customers."
John Leahy, Airbus chief operating officer, said: "This significant order from Alafco confirms that the neo ticks all the right boxes and is clearly the best product on the market."
Over 8,100 A320 aircraft have already been ordered and more than 4,800 delivered to 340 customers and operators worldwide.
The A320neo is a new engine option for the A320 family entering into service from 2015 and incorporates latest generation engines and large "Sharklet" wing tip devices, which together will deliver 15 percent in fuel savings.
Last month, Alafco announced a net profit of KD47m for the fiscal year ended September 30, a four-fold increase on the previous year.
The company added in a statement that its assets increased by eight percent to KD581m.