Boeing tops Airbus in orders at Paris Air Show

Airbus has conceded defeat to arch-rival Boeing at the Paris Airshow as a last-minute haul of almost 100 orders, including new interest from Iran, failed to close a gap opened up by the launch of Boeing's new 737 model.
A Boeing 737 MAX 9 on the tarmac prior to performing in a flying display on Wednesday during the Paris Air Show. The total haul of about US$83 billion in deals at this year's show easily surpassed the US$50 billion signed at last year's show in Farnb
A Boeing 737 MAX 9 on the tarmac prior to performing in a flying display on Wednesday during the Paris Air Show. The total haul of about US$83 billion in deals at this year's show easily surpassed the US$50 billion signed at last year's show in Farnborough, England, which was the lowest figure since 2010.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

PARIS • Boeing secured twice as much in order value at the Paris Air Show as rival Airbus, marking the US plane-maker's first victory in five years at the aviation industry's annual showcase.

Boeing won orders and expressions of interest for about 420 planes worth as much as US$58 billion (S$80.6 billion) based on a Bloomberg count through midday on Wednesday, getting a boost from demand for the Max 10, the biggest version of its B-737 workhorse.

Airbus, which posted a tally of 229 airliners valued at about US$25 billion, dismissed the setback and said it was focusing on meeting delivery targets to make up for production snags rather than seeking new purchasers.

The haul of about US$83 billion in deals easily surpassed the US$50 billion signed at last year's show in Farnborough, England, which was the lowest figure since 2010.

Asian lessors and airlines were particularly active as they girded for an accelerating travel boom. The order binge reflected customer support for a new Boeing 737 model, and quieted concerns that demand is fading for new jetliners.

"Maybe people came to the show with muted expectations, but the order activity is positive on the backdrop of relatively strong air-traffic growth," said Mr Kelly Ortberg, CEO of aerospace supplier Rockwell Collins.

The biggest buyer at the Paris expo was General Electric's GE Capital Aviation Services, which ordered 100 Airbus planes valued at US$10.8 billion and converted 20 Boeing production slots from earlier purchases to the planned B-737 Max 10. That model, rolled out to combat Airbus' hot-selling A-321neo, secured 336 commitments.

One of the largest customers at the show was India's SpiceJet, which struck a deal with Boeing for 40 of the new Max model, co-founder Ajay Singh said in an interview. It was joined in orders at Boeing by Chinese operator Okay Airways Co, Indonesia's Lion Mentari Airlines, Japan Investment Adviser and BOC Aviation.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 23, 2017, with the headline 'Boeing tops Airbus in orders at Paris Air Show'. Print Edition | Subscribe