Budget UK airline Monarch has announced it has ordered an extra 15 Boeing 737 Max 8s, as it plans to have a completely modern fleet by 2022.
The 15 737s are valued at $1.7bn (£1.3bn) at current list prices and will grow Monarch's fleet from 30 to 45 airplanes, with the first delivery in 2018.
The two companies have also announced the launch of a joint venture with the aim of securing additional third-party fleet servicing agreements.
“This is a momentous day for our business,” said Monarch’s chief executive Andrew Swaffield. “The decision to exercise our option for an additional 15 737 Max 8 aircraft is a clear illustration of confidence in Monarch’s future success. By the end of 2022, Monarch will have a completely new, modern fleet which will transform both the airline and the customer experience."
Swaffield said the fuel-efficient fleet will also help the airline reduce its environmental impact, and add £100m a year to its bottom line from lower fuel and servicing costs.
The airline was given a boost last October after turbulence from the post-Brexit vote devaluation of the pound made market conditions tougher.
It received a £165m cash injection from its majority shareholder, Greybull Capital, allowing the firm to renew its ATOL licences from the Civil Aviation Authority for the next year