London: British airline Virgin Atlantic said on Monday that it had placed an order for ten mid-sized and fuel-efficient A330-300 passenger aircraft worth $2.1 billion (€1.5 billion).
“Virgin Atlantic, one of the world’s leading long-haul airlines, on Monday announced a $2.1billion order for 10 new Airbus A330-300 aircraft which will be delivered from early 2011,” Richard Branson’s carrier said in a statement, adding that five aircraft will arrive in 2011 and five in 2012.
“The new aircraft, which can seat up to 270 passengers, will operate on many of Virgin Atlantic’s existing business and leisure routes worldwide.
“They will also assist future growth, helping Virgin Atlantic to fly to new destinations from London such as Beijing, Cancun and Vancouver,” added the airline
Virgin Atlantic also celebrated its 25th anniversary on Monday. The carrier launched its first flight, from London to New York, on June 22, 1984.
The airline enjoyed soaring profits last year despite a vicious recession in Britain, the eurozone, the US and elsewhere.
“Despite the worst economic conditions in decades, we are focusing on sustainable growth in the years ahead using the most fuel-efficient aircraft possible,” Virgin Atlantic’s chief executive Steve Ridgway said on Monday.