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Tuesday, November 16th, 2021

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DHL places its largest-ever order for nine Boeing 767-300BCFs

DHL Express (DHL) has announced from the Dubai Air Show that it has placed an order for nine 767-300 Boeing Converted Freighters (BCFs), it’s largest order to date for the aircraft type. The acquisition will help expand DHL's long-haul intercontinental fleet respond to increased global demand for cargo capacity.

DHL has already taken delivery of seven of a batch of eight 767-300BCFs that have been leased to DHL partner airlines in the Middle East and Latin America in support of its expanding regional networks. The 767-300BCF is the most efficient medium wide-body converted freighter and can carry up to 51.6 tonnes (113,900 pounds) up to 6,190 kilometres (3,345 nautical miles).

"We are confident in the quality and OEM expertise that comes with Boeing's converted freighters," explains Geoff Kehr, senior vice president, Global Air Fleet Management, DHL Express. "The additional B767 freighters are part of our efforts to modernise DHL's long-haul intercontinental fleet in order to fly eco-friendlier and more cost-efficiently. Our goal is to enhance our well-connected global network whilst reducing carbon emissions and fuel consumption to benefit the environment, partners and customers alike."

Ihssane Mounir, Boeing's senior vice president of Commercial Sales and Marketing commented: "We are pleased that DHL continues to expand its 767-300BCF fleet to help meet the growing demand for its global logistics and cargo business. The versatility of the 767-300BCF makes it the preferred medium wide-body converted freighter for both the general and express cargo markets, ensuring DHL will have the capability, reliability and efficiency it needs to capture growth opportunities and maximise its air cargo operations."

ATR finalises multiple aircraft deals at 2021 Dubai Airshow

At the Dubai Airshow ATR, the regional aircraft manufacturer, has signed a Letter of Intent (LoI) with Toki Air, a new regional commercial airline in Japan that will operate out of Niigata airport. The cooperation with ATR will help Toki Air to achieve its higher purpose of revitalising the city of Niigata, by increasing mobility within and between surrounding regions.Through this LoI, ATR and Toki Air are engaging in consultations to add ATR 42 aircraft to the airline’s fleet and introduce the ATR 42-600S variant – for STOL (Short Take-Off and Landing). This new version of the ATR 42-600, currently under development, will offer take-off and landing capabilities on runways as short as 800 metres with 40 passengers on board in standard flight conditions. First deliveries are expected for the beginning of 2025.

ATR has finalised the sale of three ATR 72-600 aircraft to Central African airline Afrijet which will use the aircraft to replace part of its ATR 72-500 fleet. From the second aircraft onwards, these ATR 72-600 will be equipped with the latest generation P&WC engine, the PW127XT-M, which delivers increased efficiency and burns less fuel. The deal is further proof of the ATR’s effectiveness at growing regional routes and networks, thanks to its cost-effective operations. Afrijet initially started with pre-owned ATR aircraft and then moved to a leased ATR 72-600 in 2020. This direct acquisition of brand new aircraft will increase the -600 fleet size to four ATR 72-600, allowing the opening of new routes and increasing frequency.

Air Corsica and ATR have signed a firm order for five new ATR 72-600 aircraft to be powered by the new Pratt & Whitney Canada engine, the PW127XT. Deliveries will start by November 2022. The order means a full upgrade of Air Corsica’s ATR 72 fleet. Thanks to its state-of-the-art turboprop engines, the Corsican airline will be able to optimise its operations, with increased capacity and reduced operating costs and contribute to the development of a more responsible aviation.

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Rolls-Royce provides Silk Way West Airlines with replacement RB211 engines

Rolls-Royce has signed an agreement with Silk Way West Airlines to provide replacement engines for five of its RB211-524 powered Boeing 747-400F aircraft that will support its operations until 2026.

The agreement will provide the cargo airline with a minimum of 20,000 flight cycles of engine life for the next five years and provides them with a cost-effective solution for maintaining the fleet at its current level of operability.

Rolls-Royce has been delivering services to Silk Way West Airlines since 2017 and will continue to work closely with the carrier to support the maintenance of its B747-400F fleet.

Jazeera Airways commits to 28 new A320neo family aircraft

Kuwait-based carrier Jazeera Airways and Airbus have signed a MoU for 20 A320neo and eight A321neo aircraft. Jazeera Airways commenced operations in 2005 and has since emerged as a leading carrier in the region. It is operating regionally and internationally serving Middle East, Europe and Asia’s top destinations from its home base Kuwait. The Kuwaiti airline supports the country’s 2035 vision to further economic expansion and transformation into a commercial hub. 

Marwan Boodai, Chairman Jazeera Airways said, “Jazeera Airways is pleased to extend its long-term relationship with Airbus further with this significant new order. We will effectively double our current fleet size to 35 aircraft by 2026. The airline has pulled out of the pandemic strongly in Q3 with a return to profitability.  We have exciting expansion plans ahead, which will further boost our contribution to the Kuwait economy and in particular the travel sector.” 

SAUDIA selects Boeing's advanced digital analytics tools to improve maintenance operations and on-time performance

SAUDIA has selected Boeing for a suite of services to improve its 787 Dreamliner and 777 fleets' operational efficiency through digital analytics and to modify its 777 cabin interiors.

SAUDIA will utilise Boeing's Optimized Maintenance Program (OMP), which uses advanced data analytics to provide detailed insights for improved maintenance operations, and Boeing's Airplane Health Management (AHM) digital solution, which applies predictive maintenance analytics and diagnostic tools to help improve the quality and speed of maintenance decisions, resulting in improved on-time performance. These services will be combined with Boeing's OEM engineering and consulting expertise.

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Emirates and GE Aviation commit to test flight programme using 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel

Emirates and GE Aviation have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to develop a programme that will see an Emirates Boeing 777-300ER, powered by GE90 engines, conduct a test flight using 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) by the end of 2022.

Currently, SAF approved for use is a blend of petroleum-based Jet A or Jet A-1 fuel and a SAF component with a maximum blend limit of 50%. One of GE’s fuel experts chairs an international task force to develop standardized industry specifications supporting adoption of 100% SAF, which does not require blending with conventional jet fuel.

A milestone collaboration for both Emirates and GE Aviation, the 100% SAF test flight is expected to demonstrate how wide-body commercial aircraft using jet fuel made from alternative sources can lower lifecycle CO2 emissions compared to petroleum-based fuels with no operational issues.

The demonstration flight also supports both companies’ broader efforts to reduce CO2 emissions as the industry looks to scale up its use of SAF.

Emirates will work closely with regulators to secure approvals for experimental type certification and will also coordinate with airframe, Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) and Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) on pre- and post-flight requirements, in addition to closely working with SAF suppliers on procurement and delivery logistics.

Pratt & Whitney Canada launches new PW127XT engine series

Pratt & Whitney Canada, a business unit of Pratt & Whitney, has launched its new regional turboprop PW127XT engine series, designed with the latest materials and technologies to deliver the next level of efficiency, time-on-wing and service. The company celebrated the launch with ATR, with the PW127XT-M engine that is purpose-built to offer world-class reliability and increased value for ATR 42/72 aircraft.

“Since its inception, ATR has exclusively turned to Pratt & Whitney to power its fleet of regional aircraft,” said Maria Della Posta, President of Pratt & Whitney Canada. “We are pleased to launch this exciting new PW127XT-M engine with ATR. Optimised for the ATR 42/72 aircraft family, it will deliver a significant improvement in operating costs, extending the already impressive operating economics and sustainability of this regional turboprop."

"The PW127XT engine series builds upon the success of the PW127M engine. We have injected into this new PW127XT-M engine the knowledge gained from Pratt & Whitney’s history of transformation and continuous innovation and more than 2.5 billion hours of operational expertise to provide a step change in performance and customer service that helps regional airline customers achieve their business goals,” said Della Posta.

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Boeing signs purchase agreements with Emirates, Air Tanzania and Sky One FZE

Boeing has signed multiple new purchase agreements with various airlines, including Emirates which has signed an order for two 777 freighters at the 2021 Dubai Airshow, expanding the future capability of one of the world's largest cargo airlines at a time of significant global demand for air freight. The freighters will be operated by Emirates SkyCargo, which currently operates an all-Boeing fleet of ten 777 freighters and also carries cargo on Emirates' 134 777 passenger airplanes.

The United Republic of Tanzania has ordered one 787-8 Dreamliner, one 767-300 Freighter and two 737 MAX jets at the Dubai Airshow. The airplanes will be operated by Air Tanzania, the national flag-carrier of Tanzania, to expand service from the country to new markets across Africa, Asia and Europe.

Boeing’s wholly owned subsidiary Boeing Capital Corporation and Sky One FZE have signed a sales agreement for three 777-300 airplanes. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed. Sky One FZE is a privately held aircraft leasing company based in the United Arab Emirates. Sky One FZE has a diverse business portfolio, namely dry and wet leasing, maintenance, repair and overhaul services, pilot training, operations, Air Operator’s Certificate management as well as spares and logistics. The firm has a strong focus on growing airlines in Africa, the Commonwealth of Independent States and India.

ALC orders 111 Airbus aircraft - launches sustainability fund

Air Lease Corporation (ALC) has signed a Letter of Intent (LoI) covering all Airbus families, highlighting the power of the company’s full product range. The agreement is for 25 A220-300s, 55 A321neos, 20 A321XLRs, four A330neos and includes seven A350Fs. The order which will be finalised in the coming months, makes Los Angeles-based ALC one of Airbus’ largest customers and lessor with the biggest A220 order book. Founded in 2010, ALC has ordered a total of 496 Airbus aircraft to date.

With this order ALC and Airbus are launching a multi-million-dollar ESG fund initiative that will contribute towards investment into sustainable aviation development projects that will in the future be opened to multiple stakeholders from the aircraft leasing and financing community and beyond.

“With this major order, we underscore our confidence not only in the strong future and growth of global commercial air transport, but in ALC’s business model, in our specific aircraft purchase decisions including, for the first time, the new A350 Freighter and finally in our long-term view that ordering new aircraft is an optimum investment of our shareholder capital,” said John Plueger, Air Lease Corporation CEO and President. “Moreover, we and Airbus hereby announce the first ever joint ESG initiative in aircraft procurement by creating a multi-million-dollar fund for sustainable aviation development projects critical to the future”.

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Aero Capital Solutions continues freighter growth with 13 additional 737 conversions

Aero Capital Solutions (ACS), has reported the continued growth of its cargo aircraft fleet with a commitment to convert an additional 13 Boeing 737-800SF to freighters.

The conversions will be carried out in conjunction with an STC (supplemental type certificate) provided by Aeronautical Engineers (AEI) and add to the 21 aircraft that ACS has already committed for conversion.

The first of the additional Boeing 737-800SF aircraft will commence modification performed by Commercial Jet based in Miami, Florida, in March 2023. The remaining 12 aircraft modifications will be distributed between Commercial Jet, KF Aerospace and HAECO Xiamen with the final aircraft commencing in December 2023.

Upon completion, ACS’ total freighter portfolio will comprise of 34 Boeing 737-800SF aircraft.

GA Telesis closes new five-year US$225 million ABL credit facility

GA Telesis has announced the closing of a new five-year US$225 million ABL credit facility led by HSBC Bank USA and Fifth Third Bank, as joint lead arrangers. The syndication was met with overwhelming interest and allowed the company to improve terms while expanding its existing bank group.

The facility comprises nine global, super-regional and regional banks with HSBC Bank USA as administrative agent. The facility refinanced an existing US$225 million ABL facility led by HSBC, which was set to expire in 2022. The new facility has improved availability, pricing and other terms consistent with or better than the current facility with the support of a larger and more diverse bank group.

The proceeds from the facility will be used for general corporate purposes, acquisitions and funding future growth. In addition, the five-year term and competitive borrowing costs will provide financial stability while allowing the company to make longer-term acquisition decisions.

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Overland Airways and Embraer sign order for up to six E175 aircraft

Embraer and Overland Airways from Nigeria have signed a firm order for three new E175 aircraft, plus three purchase rights for the same model of aircraft, at the Dubai Airshow. The 88-seat aircraft, with premium class cabin configuration, will be delivered from 2023. The deal is worth at US$ 299.4 million, at list price with all purchase rights being exercised.

These aircraft will increase the domestic flights and allow to expand more regional routes. Overland Airways' President and CEO Capt. Edward Boyo said, “we are confident that this is the right moment to invest, as regional aviation is on an optimistic post-pandemic recovery. Our customers will really enjoy all comfort in the E175 and we appreciate our partnership with Embraer.”

Iraqi Airways selects Panasonic Avionics for narrow-body and wide-body IFE and connectivity

Panasonic Avionics has been selected by Iraqi Airways to provide in-flight entertainment and connectivity (IFEC) solutions for its new fleet of 21 narrow-body and 10 wide-body aircraft.

These aircraft, which includes five A220, 16 B737MAX and 10 B787 aircraft types, will be line-fitted with Panasonic’s X Series IFE solutions and are expected to enter service in October 2022.

Panasonic Avionics’ X Series offers elegant full HD seatback monitors, complete with capacitive touch displays and handsets and an intuitive, personalised interface. Passengers will have access to USB and laptop charging power points at every seat as well. The X Series portfolio also includes eXW, which delivers a premium passenger experience to passengers’ personal devices. Each of these systems are designed to help drive ancillary revenue, foster higher levels of passenger loyalty and increase passenger engagement.

The airline’s Boeing 737 MAX fleet, which will feature the company’s eX1 narrow-body IFE solution, also offers Panasonic Avionics’ in-flight Wi-Fi service. Its next-generation connectivity enables a host of connectivity benefits, from fast internet to video streaming, all powered by its new satellite modem featuring bandwidth up to twenty times greater than previously available.

Panasonic Avionics’ IFEC solutions are also being fitted to Iraqi Airways’ new fleet of five Airbus A220 aircraft, the first of which entered service last month. To meet the airline’s requirement of offering state-of-the-art wireless IFE streaming on its A220 fleet, Panasonic Avionics is installing its eXW solution, which delivers a wide range of content to passengers’ personal electronic devices, along with its in-flight Wi-Fi service.

For Iraqi Airways’ Boeing 787 aircraft, Panasonic Avionics is providing its industry-leading eX3 in-flight system and global high-speed connectivity services.
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Tamar Jorssen
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Email: tamar.jorssen@avitrader.com
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Tamar