Fuji Dream Airlines (FDA) signed (20-Dec-2012) a contract for two Embraer E175 jets. The total value of the deal is USD81.6 million, at list price, which will be included in Embraer’s 4Q2012 backlog. Both aircraft will be configured in a single-class layout with 84 seats. This order brings the total number of aircraft in the airline's all-E-Jet fleet to eight. These aircraft will be equipped with Autoland systems to perform CAT III approach and landing in limited visual conditions. In line with FDA’s brand, each of these aircraft will be painted in a different colour. The colours of the six E-Jets in the airline’s current fleet are red, light blue, green, orange, pink and purple. Created in 2007 as a low-cost operator, FDA initially ordered two E170 jets for its start-up operations from Shizuoka in Jul-2009. In that same year, FDA ordered another E175, and subsequently added one E170 and two E175 jets between 2010 and 2011, thereby tripling its initial fleet in less than three years of revenue service. With aircraft based in Nagoya and Shizuoka, FDA links secondary cities in Japan where demand is growing. The six E-Jets in FDA’s current fleet covers a network of 10 stations spread across Japan such as Fukuoka, Niigata, Aomori and Sapporo, with the carrier transporting over 1.3 million passengers to date. It operates 40 daily services. [more - original PR]
Fuji Dream Airlines orders two more E175 Jets
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Bombardier C Series: record orders in 2016 as both variants finally enter service
The first commercial flight of the Bombardier CS300 on 14-Dec-2016, operated by airBaltic from Riga to Amsterdam, will be a major milestone for the Canadian manufacturer's new C Series aircraft programme. Three CS100 aircraft are already in service with SWISS, so the airBaltic flight will mean that both variants of the C Series are finally in commercial operation.
The programme is Bombardier's first wholly new aircraft development, aimed at the 100 to 150-seat market segment and offering advantages of fuel efficiency, cabin space, noise and emissions. Bombardier once targeted 2013 for entry into service, but has been dogged by problems and delays. In 2015, Bombardier seemed to have overstretched itself. The C Series received no new orders during the year and Bombardier was forced to seek investment from the Province of Québec to rescue the programme.
In 2016 the company has recovered to win a net 117 new orders, its highest annual total, bringing the programme total to 360. However, competition is cut-throat, with Airbus, Boeing and Embraer all having new developments of existing products in the same space as the C Series. Bombardier's breakthrough orders from Air Canada and Delta in 2016 required heavy price discounts.
United Airlines Part 2: Sustaining balance sheet strength while declaring ambitious margin targets
One area where United Airlines has made important strides during the last few years is in overhauling its balance sheet. Its efforts have gained some recognition from credit agencies for its progress in paring down debt and improving leverage ratios; but similarly to its rival American Airlines – attaining an investment-grade credit rating is not a huge priority for United. The airline believes it can achieve some benefits that investment-grade companies enjoy with the current state of its balance sheet.
In order to sustain the progress it has made in balance sheet repair United plans to amend its aircraft order book to slash capex commitments during the next couple of years, including the deferral of 61 Boeing narrowbodies. United is hinting that other fleet changes could be under consideration, including deals similar to the agreement it forged during 2015 to lease used Airbus A319s.
This is Part 2 in a two-part series reviewing United’s financial and revenue-generating opportunities.