IndiGO, India's largest domestic airline by market value, has purchased a massive order of 250 A320 neo aircrafts from Airbus for $26. 5 billion. According to an Airbus' spokesperson, it is the company's single largest order based on the number of aircrafts but the second-largest order by value.
The IndiGo-Airbus deal was signed on Saturday, which confirmed an earlier provisional order by the Indian airline company for narrow-body planes that were announced in October, BBC News noted. Now, IndiGO has ordered 530 A320 family planes in all from Airbus. The delivery of which would be from 2018 until 2026, airline company president Aditya Ghosh said.
Ghosh also told Reuters that IndiGo will perform sale and leaseback transactions on the majority of the aircraft bought from Airbus. The $26.5 billion deal makes IndiGo the largest airline customer for the Airbus A320-family of aircraft. Low-cost carriers such as Malaysia's AirAsia and Indonesia's Lion Air are among the other large A320 customers of Airbus.
"This new order further reaffirms IndiGo's commitment to the long-term development of affordable air transportation in India and overseas," Ghosh said in a statement, as per Business Standard. "The additional fuel efficient A320neo aircraft will enable us to continue to bring our low fares and courteous, hassle-free service to more customers and markets and will create more job opportunities and growth. The IndiGo team is energized and excited to herald this new phase of our growth for many years to come."
The firm has placed a series of orders for Airbus jets as it tries to win a bigger share of India's fast-growing aviation market.
The A320neo, the re-engined and upgraded variant of the A320 family of planes, is a more fuel-efficient variant of the widely-used A320 aircraft. It competes against Boeing's upgraded 737 Max, which are used on flights of up to around five hours, in the narrow-body market segment.
Over the next two decades, 70 percent of all planes will require the narrow-body type.
Meanwhile, travel entrepreneur Rahul Bhatia and U.S. Airways former chief executive Rakesh Gangwal founded IndiGo, an Indian budget airline, in 2006. Though a low-cost carrier, IndiGo strives hard to get the bigger share of India's fast-growing aviation market.