Korean Air and Boeing announced (18-Jun-2013) that the airline has agreed to purchase five 747-8s and six 777-300ERs, valued at approximately USD3.6 billion at current list prices. Boeing will work with Korean Air to finalise the order, at which time the order will be posted to Boeing's Orders & Deliveries website. The 747-8I is powered with GEnx-2B engines and the 777-300ERs with GE90-115B engines. When the engine order is finalised, the list price of the engines will be valued at more than USD800 million. Korean Air is the only airline in the world to order both the passenger and freighter variations of the 747-8. When this order is finalised, the carrier will have 10 747-8s on order. The airline has taken delivery of three of its seven 747-8Fs on order. Korean Air currently operates a fleet of 90 Boeing passenger aircraft that consist of 737, 747 and 777 aircraft. The airline also operates an all-Boeing cargo fleet of 27 747-400, 747-8 and 777 Freighters. In Feb-2012, Korean Air became the first airline in the world to operate both the 747-8F and 777Fs. [more - original PR - Boeing] [more - original PR - GE]
Korean Air announces commitment to purchase five 747-8s and six 777-300ERs
You may also be interested in the following articles...
Hainan Airlines to Las Vegas: more international flights to follow as Southwest starts partnerships
Hainan Airlines' Beijing-Las Vegas 787 service commencing in Dec-2016 will end Korean Air's tenure as the only Asian airline in Las Vegas. Las Vegas is arguably the largest feasible unserved North American market for Hainan. Delivery of over 30 787-9s in coming years means that Hainan will need to establish new markets. The route tests the booking data that airlines and airports rely on: Las Vegas believes airlines have shied away from serving the city and that this is misguided – because Las Vegas' international visitors are not represented, since they often take multi-city itineraries and thus do not appear as a Las Vegas international passenger. Las Vegas wants to prise its international passengers away from transit hubs.
Hainan's presence will initially be about half of Korean Air's, which was upped days prior to Hainan's announcement. Yet this may be the best outcome for Korean. A Chinese service was inevitable, but Las Vegas had to wait for political sensitivities to cool since Las Vegas flights would not have been timely as China's anti-corruption and austerity campaigns unfolded. Hainan brings enough presence to deter more competition in the short term, yet its narrow focus on the outbound Beijing market leaves Korean Air with many opportunities around Asia. Further international growth for Las Vegas is likely after McCarran airport's largest operator, Southwest Airlines, is ready to partner with other airlines in 2018.
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.