Airbus signs $11bn A380 deal

AIRBUS celebrated yesterday after receiving a record breaking order from Emirates Airline for 32 A380 planes worth $11.5bn (£8bn).

The deal, the largest of its kind yet, was signed in Berlin by the airline’s chief executive and chairman Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al-Maktoum and Airbus president and chief executive Tom Enders.

The signing was witnessed by German chancellor Angela Merkel at the Berlin Air Show.

Enders called the endorsement by Emirates the best he could imagine and thanked the airline for its support.

“Emirates has supported the development of the A380 from the earliest days, and today’s order – the single largest A380 order ever – is the best endorsement I can imagine,” said Enders.

The Dubai-based airline first purchased the luxury jetliner, which can hold up to 835 passengers, two years ago and yesterday’s order will add to its existing fleet of 58 A380 planes.

“Our latest commitment signals Emirates’ confidence in the growth to come in a thriving aviation sector,” said Saeed Al-Maktoum.

Over 16 airlines currently have orders for A380 crafts, bringing the total number of orders to 234.

The orders are good for Airbus, which posted a 64 per cent drop in operating profit last year to €83m (£69m), which missed the average market expectations.

Airbus owner EADS, had said last month that the A380 continued to significantly weigh on its underlying performance.

Meanwhile, Airbus has seen a further request for 20 A320 and five A350-900 aircraft by Brazilian airline TAM.