Home / Companies / GoAir takes delivery of its first of 72 A320neo aircraft

Mumbai: Go Airlines (India) Ltd, which runs low-fare airline GoAir, has taken delivery of its first fuel efficient A320neo aircraft, becoming the world’s third operator to do so.

In a statement on Thursday, European airplane maker Airbus SAS said the A320neo, powered by Pratt and Whitney engines, is the first of 72 A320neo on order and joins GoAir’s existing fleet of 19 A320 aircraft.

A320neo planes are expected to offer 15-20% savings on jet fuel, which makes up the largest chunk of spending by airlines.

“The aircraft is configured in a conformable layout and is the first A320neo equipped with the innovative Spaceflex cabin configuration with 186 seats. GoAir currently flies to 22 Indian destinations. With the Neo induction, GoAir will expand its network and offer fliers better connectivity and continue its growth as one of India’s preferred low-cost airline," Airbus said.

GoAir’s first A320neo is the first of the type to be financed on sale and leaseback arrangement through SMBC Aviation Capital Ltd of Ireland.

A sale and leaseback arrangement is common in the airline business. Airlines sell their planes to a lender in a process that helps them generate revenue, and then lease the same planes for a fee.

GoAir declined to comment.

According to Airbus, the A320neo family incorporates latest technologies, including new generation engines and Sharklet wing tip devices, which together deliver more than 15% in fuel savings from day one and 20% by 2020 with further cabin innovations.

The A320neo family is the world’s best-selling single aisle product line with over 4,500 orders from 82 customers since its launch in 2010 capturing almost 60% share of the market, the airplane maker said.

GoAir’s initial public offer (IPO) timing is directly linked with the induction of A320neo planes into its fleet and it would finalize the share sale plan once it receives clarity on the delivery schedule from Airbus.

In October 2015, the IPO of InterGlobe Aviation Ltd, owner of India’s largest and most profitable airline IndiGo, received demand for 6.14 times the shares it offered investors, as financial institutions and rich individuals sought to tap the world’s fastest growing aviation market.

IndiGo took delivery of Asia’s first A320neo aircraft on 10 March from Airbus. On 29 February, IndiGo said Airbus had confirmed that it will deliver 24 A320neo aircraft by March 2017.

Induction of A320neos is also critical for IndiGo—which has been consistently profitable since 2009, a feat unrivalled by any other domestic airline—to maintain its dominant market share in Indian aviation.

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