American aircraft manufacturer Boeing has announced an order for 72 Boeing 737 MAXs from Akasa Air, the new airline founded by ex-Jet Airways CEO Vinay Dube with funding from Rakesh Jhunjhunwala.
The order which is valued at nearly $9 billion at list prices, which would have been placed at a sizeable discount as per industry norms includes two variants of the MAX – the 737-8 and the high-capacity 737-8-200. The MAX 200 which was primarily designed to suit the requirements of launch customer Ryan Air will allow Akasa to fight head on with the major LCCs of India.
Vinay Dube, CEO, Akasa Air
“We are delighted to partner with Boeing for our first airplane order and thank them for their trust and confidence in Akasa Air’s business plan and leadership team. We believe that the new 737 MAX airplane will support our aim of running not just a cost-efficient, reliable and affordable airline, but also an environmentally friendly company with the youngest and greenest fleet in the Indian skies.
India is one of the fastest-growing aviation markets in the world with an unparalleled potential. We are already witnessing a strong recovery in air travel, and we see decades of growth ahead of us. Akasa Air’s core purpose is to help power India’s growth engine and democratize air travel by creating an inclusive environment for all Indians regardless of their socio-economic or cultural backgrounds.”
The order comes as a big win for Boeing which only has the 737 MAX in service with one carrier in India namely Spicejet. Akasa plans to launch commercial operations in the summer of 2022.