Avialeasing firms order for 24 Superjets

 - June 16, 2009, 11:41 AM

Russian aircraft lessor Avialeasing yesterday converted a letter of intent for 24 Sukhoi Superjet 100 regional airliners signed at last July’s Farnborough airshow into a firm order valued at $715 million. Scheduled for delivery between 2011 and 2013, the airplanes are destined for Avialeasing customer airlines.

Sukhoi Civil Aircraft president Victor Soubbotin and Avialeasing vice president Victor Novikov, vice president of Avialeasing, sealed the Superjet deal with champagne at Sukhoi’s Paris Air Show chalet yesterday morning. Avialeasing still holds a letter of intent for options covering another 16 Superjet 100s.

The deal brings Sukhoi Civil Aircraft’s firm order book for the Superjet to 122 airplanes, initial deliveries for which are set to begin in December when launch customer Aeroflot takes its first aircraft. Aeroflot holds 30 firm orders plus 15 options for the Superjet 100.

Here in Paris on Monday, Sukhoi announced Hungarian flagcarrier Malev signed a letter of intent for 30 Superjets, 15 of which are firm orders and the remainder options. The deal could potentially be worth $1 billion if all orders and options are exercised. Sukhoi followed up that news with the signing yesterday of another letter of intent, this one with Spanish airline Gadair, involving two firm orders and two options and potentially worth around $60 million.  

Sukhoi plans to build 70 Superjets a year by 2012 and has hopes of capturing a 20-percent share of the world regional jet market in the next 20 years. Thirteen Superjet 100s are currently under production at the Sukhoi Civil Aircraft factory in eastern Russia and two prototypes are flying. A third airplane is scheduled to join the test regimen next month as the company works toward concurrent Russian and EASA certifications. Soubbotin said Sukhoi is targeting almost 30 more firm orders by the end of this year.