All Nippon Airways (ANA) and Boeing signed (25-Sep-2011) the formal documents completing the contractual delivery of the first B787. The signing comes after a series of test flights, inspections and the transfer of funds. A delivery ceremony and the flyaway of the aircraft will take place on 26-Sep-2011. ANA will televise the landing of the B787 at Tokyo Haneda on 28-Sep-2011. The first B787 was initially expected for delivery to ANA in May-2008 but has experienced seven delays due to engineering and supply chain glitches and a 58-day labour strike in 2008.
"We have been waiting for the 787 for over three years as we expected it in the summer of 2008. I can't say the delayed delivery didn't have any impact but ANA and Boeing worked closely to mitigate it," said ANA senior VP Satoru Fujiki. ANA will deploy the first B787 into service domestically on 26-Oct-2011, before being deployed on international routes in 2012. ANA has ordered 55 B787s worth USD11 billion at current list prices.
ANA expects to take delivery of four B787s in 2011 and an additional eight in 2011. By the end of 2017, the carrier will have all B787s in service. Mr Fujiki added ANA is now confident Boeing will meet its production-rate target and fill the rest of ANA's 55 B787s on time, adding: "We are confident the B787 is going to be a good performer". The B787 programme has reportedly cost USD32 billion, according to Seattle Times reports, meaning it will be some time before the programme breaks even. Commenting on the B787, Boeing VP and GM 787 programme Scott Fancher stated: "For aviation we believe this is as important as the 707 was with the introduction of the jet age. Plastic is what you have on the dashboard of your car. This is not plastic". Mr Fancher added the manufacturer is working "very hard" with B787 customers to ensure the aircraft meets their needs and any concerns, including those about the initial B787s being overweight, are resolved.
Meanwhile, Boeing spokeswoman Lori Gunter stated Boeing is maintaining its 2013 targets for the next B787 variant, the B787-9. [more - original PR]