Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA), the largest U.S. aerospace manufacturer, said Tuesday it reached a deal with Kuwaiti airplane leasing company ALAFCO to sell 20 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft valued at $1.9 billion, its second big deal at the Farnborough Airshow in England.
This is the first commitment for the 737 MAX from the Middle East, which is one of the aviation industry's highest growth regions, said Ray Conner, CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, in a statement.
The deal followed another big deal for Chicago-based Boeing. On Monday, the company finalized an order for 75 of its 737 planes from Los Angeles leasing company Air Lease Corp, with a list price of $7.2 billion.
The 737 MAX has over 1,000 orders and commitments from 17 customers since launching Aug. 30, 2011, said Boeing. The plane has fuel efficiency features that reduce carbon emissions by 13 percent, compared to current planes, according to the company. ALAFCO previously ordered six 737-800s in March 2007, with the last delivery in July 2011.
We think Boeing will enjoy strong revenue growth over the short run, powered by higher production rates in its commercial airplane segment. Boeing anticipates increasing the 737 production to 42 per month by mid-2014, from today's 35-per-month pace, wrote Neal Dihora, an analyst with Morningstar, in an April research note.
Meanwhile, Boeing's main rival, Toulouse, France-based Airbus SAS, a division of EADS NV (Euronext Paris: EAD), said Tuesday it reached an agreement to sell 20 of its massive A350-1000 planes to Hong Kong-based Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. (Hong Kong: 0293), with a list price of $4.2 billion. It was the first order for Airbus' 350-seat plane, which had been pushed back two years to mid-2017 because of lack of demand.
Shares of Boeing rose 50 cents to $74.53 in Tuesday-morning trading. EAD was down 0.24 euros to 28.27 euros. Cathay Pacific was down 2 percent to 12.72 Hong Kong dollars at market close.