Embraer’s $15 Bn E-Jet blitz

Brazil’s Embraer created a big stir on the second day of the Farnborough Airshow with signed orders and commitments with airlines for a total of 300 regional jets, valued at US$15.3 billion.

The biggest order of six announced was with US carrier Republic Airways, already the world’s largest E-Jet operator, who signed a Letter of Intent (LoI) for a firm order of 100 E175s, with the right to convert them to E175-E2 aircraft (with any potential change in US scope clause in mind). It also has purchase rights for an additional 100 E175s. If all purchase rights are exercised, the total value would be $9.3 billion based on current list prices. Deliveries will start in 2020.

Bryan Bedford, Republic’s president and CEO, said the order “positions Republic to focus on the next stage of growth in the North American regional market. The E-Jet has proven to be a product that allows Republic to provide a reliable and seamless product experience with our mainline partners.” The airline currently operates a fleet of nearly 190 E170 and E175 aircraft under its major airline partner brands of American Eagle, Delta Connection and United Express.


$1.4 Bn Azul order

Another order valued at $1.4 billion was placed by Brazilian carrier Azul Linhas Aéreas Brasileiras, signing an LoI for a firm order of 21 E195-E2 jets. This is in addition to an order for 30 E195-E2s signed by the airline in 2015, raising Azul’s total order to 51 E2 aircraft. The airline will be the launch operator of the E195-E2 and is scheduled to receive its first aircraft in 2019.

“Given that 50% of our E1s will be returned within the next five years, this new order ensures the replacement of these aircraft by fuel-efficient new generation aircraft, contributing to the continuous reduction of our unit costs,” said John Rodgerson, Azul’s CEO.

Another E2 buyer was Zurich-based Helvetic Airways, which signed an LoI with Embraer for the firm order of 12 E190-E2 aircraft, with purchase rights for another 12 (with conversion rights to the E195-E2). If all purchase rights are exercised, the deal has a list price of $1.5 billion.

The first 12 E190-E2 aircraft will begin replacing Helvetic’s five Fokker 100s and seven E190s, starting in late 2019 and completing in autumn 2021. Tobias Pogorevc, CEO, said, “Our existing Embraer fleet is performing with excellent dispatch rates and our Fokker 100s have been very productive in the last 12 years. However, with the new E2 family, Helvetic will consolidate its highly reliable operation with the quietest and most efficient next generation aircraft available.”


First Middle East E2 operator

A further E2 deal valued at $1.3 billion saw a firm order placed by Kuwaiti airline Wataniya Airways for 10 E195-E2s, which will see it become the first operator of the aircraft type in the Middle East. The contract also includes 10 purchase rights for the same model. Deliveries will start in 2020. The airline will configure the E195-E2 with 118 seats, with 12 in staggered business class and 106 in economy.

“The E195-E2 will allow us to open non-served markets and increase frequencies, delivering better connectivity to the Kuwait market”, said Rakan Al-Tuwaijri, CEO. “We have chosen the staggered seats to differentiate ourselves from the competition, offering a superior product with extra leg room and better privacy for our customers.”

A mystery airline buyer from Spain, meanwhile, has signed an LoI for up to five E195-E2 jets – three firm orders and two options. If all options are taken, the deal has a list price of $342 million.

An LoI was also signed with lessor Nordic Aviation Capital for a firm order of three E190s valued at $156 million, while last but not least, Embraer and Africa’s Mauritania Airlines confirmed a firm contract valued at $93.8 million for two E175s. The carrier will configure both aircraft with 76 seats in a dual class layout, with delivery next year.

The orders on Day 2 followed one on the first day with United Airlines for 25 E-Jets.


Written by: Mark Thomas

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