Spring Airlines to Buy 60 Airbus A320neo Jets
China's Spring Airlines Co., founded by billionaire Wang Zhenghua, signed an agreement to buy 60 Airbus A320 planes to meet demand in a country poised to overtake the U.S. as the world's largest travel market. The planes have a list price of US$6.3 billion and will be delivered from 2019 to 2023, the airline said in a statement Thursday.
The transaction reflects the popularity of the single-aisle A320 among low-cost carriers, adding to a US$3.6 billion deal by Vietnam's VietJet Aviation Joint Stock Co. last month. Spring Air said the new planes will more than double its capacity, based on available seat kilometers as last Dec. 31.
Shares of Spring Airlines rose 4.9 percent Thursday to 60.28 yuan in Shanghai, before the deal was announced. The carrier's shares have risen 564 percent since their debut in January, compared to the 6.4 percent decline during that time in the benchmark Hang Seng Index.
The purchase comprises 45 A320neo planes and 15 A321neo aircraft, and needs approval from shareholders and relevant authorities, Spring Air said.
Demand in Asia will push commercial aircraft sales to US$5.2 trillion over the next two decades as China overtakes the U.S. as the world's largest aviation market, according to a Boeing Co. prediction last year.