Indonesia’s Lion Air underlined its clear love for Boeing aircraft here on St. Valentine’s Day when it signed a “ceremonial certificate of purchase” to firm up the massive aircraft order it first revealed at the Dubai Airshow last November.
Jakarta-based Lion Air’s founder and president director, Rusdi Kirana, and Dinesh Keskar, vice president of Asia Pacific and India Sales for Boeing Commercial Airplanes, were on hand to seal the deal whereby the airline becomes launch customer for 201 Leap-1B-powered Boeing 737-9 MAX airplanes and 29 CFM-7B-powered Next Generation 737-900ER aircraft, with purchase rights for an additional 150.
What is claimed to be the largest aircraft order in the history of civil aviation is valued at $22.4 billion at list prices. Further, the Leap-1B engine (exclusive powerplant for the new 737 variant) order is valued at $4.8 billion and CFM-7B engine at $580 million at list prices. Lion Air now has a total of 408 firm orders, with 57 already delivered. Deliveries for the 737-900ERs start in 2016 and for the 737-9 MAX in 2017.
“This is fabulous. We are so proud of Boeing and Lion Air…[the announcement] comes at a good time when Asia Pacific aviation is booming. We are very excited to be in this region,” said Nicole Lamb-Hale, U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Manufacturing and Services, who was present at the signing.
Lion Air already has 51 percent of the Indonesian local market and, according to Kirana, he will fly the 14 business and 150 economy configuration aircraft for the first two years in the domestic market and start international operations in the third year.
Lion Air is in the process of building hangars to accommodate 12 aircraft in the island of Batam free trade zone in the Riau Islands Province of Indonesia, located 12 mi from Singapore’s south coast, Kirana told AIN.