Airbus has just announced its biggest commercial plane order ever - worth $50bn

Rebecca Smith
The company has unveiled a huge deal at the Dubai Airshow
The company has unveiled a huge deal at the Dubai Airshow (Source: Airbus)

Aerospace giant Airbus has today announced a deal worth nearly $50bn (£38bn) with private equity firm Indigo Partners, which it hailed as its largest single announcement ever.

Airbus shares rose nearly four per cent in early trading on news of the hefty order spanning four airlines.

Indigo's four portfolio airlines, Hungarian carrier Wizz Air, US-based Frontier, Chile's JetSmart and Mexico's Volaris, have signed a memorandum of understanding for the purchase of 430 aircraft, as the crop of low-cost airlines eye greater expansion.

Read more: Wizz Air ramps up expansion plans with 146 plane Airbus deal worth $17.2bn

The deal is made up of 273 A320neos and 157 A321neos worth $49.5bn (£37.5bn) at list prices, and was announced today at the Dubai Airshow.

“This significant commitment for 430 additional aircraft underscores our optimistic view of the growth potential of our family of low-cost airlines, as well as our confidence in the A320neo family as a platform for that growth,” said Bill Franke, managing partner of Indigo Partners.

Franke added that engine selections will be decided, and announced, at a later date.

Airbus' chief operating officer - customers, John Leahy, said: "An order for 430 aircraft is remarkable, but it’s particularly gratifying to all of us at Airbus when it comes from a group of airline professionals who know our products as well as the folks at Indigo Partners do.

"We are proud to augment their airline fleets in Latin America, North America and Europe with the single-aisle aircraft that offers the lowest operating costs, longest range and most spacious cabin: the A320neo family."

The deal marks a significant coup for the company which is looking to catch up rival Boeing in orders for the year, after trailing the American firm heading into the Dubai Airshow.

Breakdown of Airbus' bumper order
  • Wizz Air - 72 A320neo, 74 A321neo
  • Frontier - 100 A320neo, 34 A321neo
  • JetSmart - 56 A320neo, 14 A321neo
  • Volaris - 46 A320neo, 34 A321neo

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