Wednesday, 19 June 2019

Korean Air agrees an 'intent' letter to 'acquire' 30 787 Dreamliners - yet holds secret talks with Airbus over A350 purchase

Boeing rushed out a press release advising that Korean Air and leasing firm Air Lease Corporation has agreed to add 30 new 787 Dreamliner aircraft to its fleet, with a commitment to purchase 10 new 787-10s and 10 additional 787-9 aeroplanes valued at $6.3 billion at current list prices. As part of this agreement, Korean Air will also lease 10 787-10s from ALC.

"As we continue to innovate our product offering, the 787 Dreamliner family will become the backbone of our long-haul fleet for many years to come," said Walter Cho, Chairman of Korean Air. 

The airline, one of the largest transpacific carriers in Asia with 16 non-stop routes to North America, will introduce the larger 787-10 to complement its long-haul fleet of 787-9 and 777 aeroplanes. This order will only be reflected on Boeing's Orders and Deliveries website once it is finalised. Yet, advisors at the Paris Air Show also said that a Korean Air delegation held secret talks with Airbus over a possible A350 order. 

"ALC is delighted and honoured to bring the 787-10 to Korean Air's fleet in a joint effort with Boeing. The 787-10 provides significant revenue enhancement to complement Korean's 787-9 fleet, and the long-term lease of ten 787-10s from ALC will greatly expand the scope and reach of the 787-10 in Korean Air's global network," said John L. Plueger, CEO and President of Air Lease Corporation.

"Today's announcement demonstrates the strength of our enduring partnership with Korean Air. The airline has been a pioneer in Asia's commercial aviation industry over the past five decades and Boeing is honoured to play an important role in their continued success," said Kevin McAllister, president and chief executive officer, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

Korean Air operates a fleet of 96 Boeing passenger aeroplanes, including the Next-Generation 737, 747, 777 and 787 aeroplanes. The airline also operates an all-Boeing cargo fleet with the 747-400, 747-8 and 777 Freighters.

"Korean Air is a leading global airline and has become one of Asia's largest transpacific carriers. We are honoured that Korean Air has decided to quadruple its 787 Dreamliner fleet and we will work closely with them to finalize this landmark deal," said Ihssane Mounir, senior vice president of Commercial Sales and Marketing of The Boeing Company. "Korean Air continues to build its incredible widebody aeroplane fleet to enable its philosophy of providing 'Excellence in Flight' for its passengers."

Korean Air also selected the GEnx engine to power its 30 additional Boeing 787 Dreamliners. This selection will increase Korean Air's GEnx-powered Dreamliner fleet to 40 aircraft.

Korean Air's Aerospace Division is a key Boeing partner on the 747-8 and 787 programs, supplying the distinctive raked wing-tips for each model. The division is also a supplier of the new 737 MAX Advanced Technology (AT) Winglet.

With a fleet of 168 aircraft, Korean Air is one of the world's top 20 airlines and serves 126 destinations in 44 countries worldwide. It is a founding member of the SkyTeam alliance and recently formed a Joint Venture partnership with Delta Air Lines.

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