Vietnam’s budget airline VietJetAir on Wednesday placed a provisional order for about 92 Airbus jets in a deal worth about $9 billion dollars, and will lease eight more planes from third party lessors, Airbus SAS said in a statement.
According to the agreement signed by the companies, VietJet has placed orders for 42 A320neo jets, 14 A320ceo jets and six A321ceo planes, and purchase rights for an additional 30 A320 single-aisle jets. The deliveries are expected to begin by next year, with the first two jets scheduled for delivery by the end of 2014, followed by up to 10 jets each year until 2022, Reuters reported. The planes cost from $70 million to $101million according to prices listed on the Airbus website on Wednesday.
The deal is the latest in a slew of huge orders placed by Asian carriers with Airbus, as rapidly expanding domestic aviation traffic in several southeast Asian countries has forced airlines in the region to expand capacity.
Airbus maker EADS NV (EPA:EAD), headquartered in Leiden, Netherlands, also received orders worth $6.75 billion for 68 Airbus A320 jets from three companies -- two Chinese airline startups and a Singapore-based plane-leasing company owned by the Bank of China -- on Wednesday.
VietJet, Vietnam's first privately-owned airline, last month had said that the company is considering an initial share sale to fund its expansion. The company plans to go for a stock-market listing in either Hong Kong or Singapore in 2015.
The company, according to industry experts, is planning to expand operations within the country and also to other international destinations. VietJet, which launched its operations on Dec. 2011 currently flies to 11 destinations within the country, and operates international services to Bangkok.
"This deal is a milestone in our company, it means we are aiming to be a multinational budget airline," managing director Luu Duc Khanh said in a telephone interview, Reuters reported. "Vietjet Air's purpose is expanding to the regional market, not only in the domestic market, so we need to be in the overseas market in order to call in more capital,” Khanh said.