Toulouse, France | October 15, 2018– Kuwait Airways, the national carrier of the state of Kuwait, has signed a Purchase Agreement (PA) for eight A330-800 aircraft. The agreement was signed by Yousef Al-Jassim, Kuwait Airways Chairman and Christian Scherer, Airbus Chief Commercial Officer, at Airbus headquarters in Toulouse.

Yousef Al-Jassim, Chairman Kuwait Airways said: “The A330-800 will seamlessly fit into our fleet expansion and growth plans. Its unbeatable operating economics and performance in addition to best in class passenger comfort make it a sound investment. We are confident that the A330-800 will support us to compete effectively on our expanding route network. Our relationship with Airbus extends beyond aircraft acquisitions and we look forward to further collaboration on technical fields.”

The announcement marks an important step in Kuwait Airways’ fleet renewal and expansion strategy. The national carrier of Kuwait also has A350 XWB and A320neo Family aircraft on order. The delivery of the new Airbus fleet will start in 2019.

“We are delighted that Kuwait Airways has chosen the A330neo as a cornerstone of its futurewidebody fleet.  The A330-800 with its unique efficiency and versatility will support the carrier’s ambition to develop its expanding long haul network,” said Christian Scherer, Airbus Chief Commercial Officer. “The aircraft will seamlessly complement Kuwait Airways’  A320neos and A350 XWBs and deliver unbeatable operating economics, full operational commonality and unmatched passenger experience.”

Launched in July 2014, the A330neo Family is the new generation A330, comprising two versions: the A330-800 and A330-900 sharing 99 percent commonality. It builds on the proven economics, versatility and reliability of the A330 Family, while reducing fuel consumption by about 25 percent per seat versus previous generation competitors and increasing range by up to 1,500 nm compared to the majority of A330s in operation. The A330neo is powered by Rolls-Royce’s latest-generation Trent 7000 engines and features a new wing with increased span and new A350 XWB-inspired Sharklets. The cabin provides the comfort of the new Airspace amenities.

The A330 is one of the most popular widebody families ever, having received over 1,700 orders from 120 customers. More than 1,400 A330s are flying with over 120 operators worldwide. The A330neo is the latest addition to the leading Airbus widebody family, which also includes the A350 XWB and the A380, all featuring unmatched space and comfort combined with unprecedented efficiency levels and unrivalled range capability.

  • New aircraft will support company’s business expansion

France | April 19, 2016– Garuda Indonesia has confirmed an order with Airbus for the purchase of 14 A330-900neo, the new re-engined version of the best-selling A330 widebody airliner, to support the company’s growth and business expansion in the future.

The deal was signed at a ceremony in London in the presence of the President of Indonesia, His Excellency Joko Widodo and British Prime Minister, the Rt. Hon. David Cameron MP.
Garuda Indonesia plans to use the A330neo to develop its medium and long haul network, with the aircraft offering cutting edge technology along with more efficient operations. The order replaces and extends an existing order for seven A330-300 aircraft, and the A330neo will be delivered from 2019 onwards.

“We are pleased to announce that we continue our long-standing relationship with Airbus. Both Garuda Indonesia and Airbus fully understand the aim of the deal as a long-term strategy to win the global challenge,” said Arif Wibowo, CEO of Garuda Indonesia.

Arif explained, “The A330neo represents a more-efficient future for Garuda Indonesia. This order restructuring is believed to support our continued commitment to deliver the most modern, comfortable and excellent air travel service to all customers as well as to strengthen the sustained positive growth and business expansion of the company.
“Furthermore, we are confident that this latest technology aircraft will support us to compete better in the industry.”
Prime Minister David Cameron said: “This deal underlines the increasing importance of our ties with Indonesia – a fast growing economy and set to become the seventh largest in the world by 2030.

“We are the fifth biggest investor in Indonesia and our relationship has more untapped potential. We want to encourage more British businesses to seize on these opportunities and we will continue to support them by banging the drum for British skills and expertise.”
Airbus Chief Operating Officer Tom Williams said: “We are delighted to welcome Garuda Indonesia as a new customer for the A330neo.

“The A330neo will bring a range of benefits from unbeatable operating economics including significant reductions in fuel consumption, lower maintenance costs and extended range capability. The aircraft will have Airbus’ all new Airspace cabin which will ensure the A330 continues to be a benchmark for passengers and airlines alike.”

The deal is the latest milestone in a long standing partnership dating back more than 30 years, when the airline took delivery of its first Airbus A300.

The A330-800neo and the A330-900neo are two new members of the Airbus Widebody Family with first deliveries scheduled to start in Q4 2017. The A330neo incorporates latest generation Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, aerodynamic enhancements and new cabin features. Benefitting from the unbeatable economics, versatility and high reliability of the A330, the A330neo reduces fuel consumption by 14% per seat, making it the most cost efficient, long range widebody aircraft on the market.

In addition to greater fuel savings, A330neo operators will also benefit from a range increase of up to 400 nautical miles and all the operational commonality advantages of the Airbus Family.

Garuda Indonesia is already rated a five star airline in terms of comfort and passenger services
Airbus launched its new Cabin brand “Airspace by Airbus” on 23rd March in London. At the heart of this new philosophy, Airbus connects the wellbeing for passengers with the operational performance for its airline customers. Representing the best of Airbus’ cabin innovation and design, Airspace will offer a sophisticated, flexible canvas as a back-drop to enhance the airlines’ own brands.

Farnborough was a big success for Airbus, who beat out Boeing almost 2 to 1, at least based on aircraft sales dollars there – $75.22B and $40.2B respectively, sort of! At show’s end, Airbus had some 496 aircraft orders/commitments from the show and Boeing chalked 201, but there were some deals in the works. There were 121 A330neo commitments, and 317 A320neo orders that included the 3,000th order of that family. Yes, Airbus beat Boeing “at the show” but a decision by Emirates in June to cancel 70 A350’s ($21B) and another decision in July to accept a Boeing deal for 150 B777x’s, with the right to purchase 50 more somewhat changes the picture. Since Emirates also cancelled the A350 orders, they might actually exercise the 50 B777 option. So where do they stand? While not technically a ‘Farnborough deal’, Emirates is purchasing 115 B777-9Xs and 35 B777-8Xs, the deal value adds over $70B to Boeing’s larder. Industry estimates say a big deal like this is only worth $31B, but if you add that to the $40.2B the show netted Boeing, it looks as if they are at least the July winner! (By the way, the Qatar 777X order announced at the show is indeed a firm order, so we are told.)

To help understand, we contacted Boeing and got this response: “There were no surprises on our end at the air show. We know that Airbus stockpiles orders specifically for the air show, while Boeing announces orders throughout the year. While the air show orders totals you list are correct, I should point out that Boeing went into the air show with more net orders for the year (Boeing 649, Airbus 290)—and we left the air show with more net orders for the year (Boeing 783, Airbus 648). The air show is simply one week out of 52″.

After reading Boeing’s Current Market Outlook we wondered how big the total IFE market over the next 20 years? Lets have some fun.

Below is the projected (20 years) airplane market in the study. We then made a seat number estimate at the average number of seats on each option. Finally, we picked an average seat IFE price of $5000 per seat with the assumption that each and every seat received IFE. Obviously our assumptions will not happen in real life; however, we wanted to get a feel for the cumulative market size, and based on a yearly IFE sale today of $2 – $3 Billion dollars, our dollar number estimate is roughly three quarters what is currently spent per year but we thought our readers would find the process interesting… and feel free to plug in your own numbers.

IFE 20-Year Market Growth Chart

If you look at the total seats from the aforementioned chart and multiply each seat by our $5,000 IFE estimate, you will get $36,208,250,000 as a total value of 20 years worth of seats. Now, divide by 20 years and the yearly total is $1.81B per year estimated average.

Lets stop for a minute and talk about the $5000 per seat for IFE. First, it is not realistic to assign IFE for every seat on the plane, on every plane, and the same value for every class of seat…we know that. And $5000 is probably good for a coach seat but we have heard numbers or upper class seats of at least $20,000… and we haven’t even mentioned inflation. Further, the aircraft seat numbers were arrived as an average number of seats per plane in the categories outlined in the Current Market Outlook. Our goal was not to give readers a NUMBER that reflects the some value that is slightly real today, but rather, a “water cooler” talkable number and a system to get there. Of course, real data clouds the result but we wanted a “number’ and thought this way, you could enter your own data and installation predictions/prices and show your boss how smart you are!

We should also note that the “number” does not include connectivity and new product developments and derivatives. Nor do we consider technology developments on the ground. If you look at IFE today and the consumer demand for IFE or connectivity, our numbers 20 years ago would seem way out of place today.

Then, for 20 years of IFE sales we average about $1.81B per year! We know the price per seat is going to go up, we know that there will be a lot of wireless connectivity and in-seat power and there will be many aircraft with no IFE. We also know an “average” seat count is not correct, and on and on. So don’t send us letters about how our assumptions are out of whack… we know it, we just wanted to get an average ‘feel’ of 20 years worth of value of the IFE business!

Along with the growth of the IFEC market value there is the growth in the design of IFEC, and the change in the content used. That is to say, in twenty years, IFEC will be different, and the content used in the new hardware will be different (i.e., 3D, 4D, “n”D, hi res., and so on). Make no mistake, it will change, not necessarily because the IFEC vendors want lighter weight hardware, not necessarily because airlines want different, higher quality content, but because passenger wants and needs will change just like they have over the last 10 years. If you think airlines are looking at HD video display because they want it, you might think again. It is the passenger home entertainment quality that keeps the demand for better movie quality. Today, if they are not satisfied with the screen, out comes the laptop, iPad, and in many cases, the personal telephone handset. What we are saying is, today it is the passenger that drives the IFEC requirements. If you need more proof, consider inflight Wi-Fi connectivity. Home Internet speeds are the driver that keeps the folks like Gogo, Panasonic and others awake at night. You climb aboard the most sophisticated flying machine ever invented and bring along a handheld device that has the fastest, lowest power consuming device/processor ever invented, and you just naturally expect the rest of the experience to be sterling because at your end, you have paid your dues. Guess what, connectivity to aircraft has not grown with the airplane technology, it came 90 years afterward so expecting it to develop at the same rate is unreasonable… it just is.

In reality, the IFE answer in the future could either be full-up everything, or nothing… based on what you believe passengers will bring aboard. In reality the answer may be both, and everything in between. If the past is any indicator, the aforementioned statement is probably going to be true. Want more proof, a reader sent us a link to one of the best airline position articles we have seen. As airlines become “hybrids” the world of aviation continues to change. It’s about Southwest, but we think you will get the message.

Next week we will have a look into the future with two if the best in IFE… Rich Salter and Michael Childers… don’t miss it.

For you history buffs, we supply a link and note we received in from a reader: “On Saturday, July 12, I led a walk-around tour at the Museum of Flight – covering the history of Boeing jetliners. My thrust was perhaps a little different from that which some may have expected. For me, the success of Boeing’s jet transport line was not the designing, and building, and flying of the 707 – it was something else – a subtle but profound attitude change inside Boeing. And the critical event was not the kick-off order for the 707 from Pan Am, but rather the later order from American Airlines – Bob Bogash.” The 707 is 60

  • Customers endorse newly launched A330neo with 121 commitments;
  • A320neo Family continues to outpace the competition with 317 orders
  • Airbus achieves the 3,000th A320neo Family order during the show

Farnborough, UK | July 17, 2014– During the 2014 Farnborough Air Show, Airbus won US$75.3 billion worth of business for a total of 496 aircraft, making it by far the largest Farnborough show for Airbus – both in terms of dollar value and also in the number aircraft. The deals comprise Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) for 138 aircraft worth $36.9 billion and purchase orders for 358 aircraft worth $38.4 billion.

The show kicked-off with the launch of the A330neo, followed by a brisk slew of announcements from major customers for a total of 121 A330neos worth $33.2 billion. Leading the charge was Air Asia X with a deal for 50 A330-900neos worth $13.8 billion. This landmark selection from one of Asia’s fastest growing carriers, in addition to the stamp of approval from the leading lessors ALC, Avolon and CIT, have together provided further proof that Airbus and Rolls-Royce have made the right choice to build on the outstanding success of the medium-range A330 airliner with the latest technology Trent engines. Furthermore, in doing so, Airbus is proud to continue to develop this platform as the ideal complement to its bigger and long-range brother, the A350 XWB, in the Airbus leading Widebody Family.

In the single-aisle sector, Airbus’ A320 Family garnered an impressive 363 commitments worth $39.0 billion. Of these, the orders for 317 A320neo and A321neo aircraft worth $34.4 billion is a further reflection of how the A320neo Family continues to outpace the competition. To add the icing to the cake, Airbus achieved the 3,000th A320neo Family sale during the show. The milestone was reached when SMBC Aviation Capital ordered 110 A320neo aircraft, marking the show’s biggest vote of confidence for the leading Single Aisle aircraft Family.

John Leahy, Airbus’ Chief Operating Officer, Customers said: “The orders and commitments we’ve received at this record-breaking Farnborough for both the A330neo and A320neo families are together an unequivocally resounding endorsement for these most cost-efficient aircraft.” He adds: “For both our single-aisle and widebody categories, the high representation of lessors – widely regarded as the global ‘barometer’ of the industry – is indicative of the long term confidence in the capacity needs for sustainable growth for the airlines in the years ahead.”

Airbus is a leading aircraft manufacturer with the most modern family of airliners, ranging in capacity from 100 to more than 500 seats. Airbus has delivered more than 8,500 aircraft to some 360 customers worldwide and has a backlog of more than 5,500 aircraft. Airbus has design and manufacturing facilities in France, Germany, the UK and Spain as well as subsidiaries in the US, China, India, Japan and in the Middle East.


As we all expected, Airbus pulled out a new plane solution to the B787 “problem” at Farnborough,  and announced that the company is launching the A330neo. It will provide 14% fuel savings per seat and first delivery is expected within 42 months (end of 2017).  The A330neo will not only have new engines, but a larger wingspan. Over-all weight reduction will be at least 800 kg. Kiran Rao, Airbus Executive Vice President, Strategy and Marketing said that the passengers will be the big winners alongside the airlines as they will see a “new look” and an even more comfortable cabin on the A330neo. He said: “Today we are announcing the A330neo. The A330neo is, of course, taken from the A330. The A330 has been one of our most successful aircraft in the Airbus wide-body family. We have sold over 1300 airplanes, and have nearly 100 customers worldwide. This is one of the most successful aircraft in the wide-body category that Airbus has produced; in fact the world has produced. And what we are doing is making this aircraft which is already great, we are making it better.”

Mr. Rao went on; “Fuel is extremely important when it comes to operating an aircraft. Because of the fuel prices that we have today, the cost of fuel represents half of the total cost of operating an aircraft. So any advantage that we can bring, the airlines have of course put the pressure on us to make sure we deliver fuel efficiency and with over 14% fuel efficiency per seat improvement, the A330neo will quickly be a great success. We have learned a lot of lessons of course in building the A320neo that is why we are able to do the A330neo in a shorter period of time. And what the airlines are asking us for is an A330neo as soon as they can get it. So with a 42-month program we will be able to deliver the first A330neo at the end of 2017. The A330 has a very comfortable cabin. Every passenger in economy class has an 18″ seat, that is much more than you get in an 787. So if we take the cabin, you take the improvements that we will give to the lighting, the improvements we will give to the sidewalls and the larger overhead bins, we will improve the crew rest areas for the pilots and cockpit crew. Well, put all that together and we will deliver an airplane where the passenger is the real winner.”

Here is the point… he went on to say, “The A330neo delivers a 14% improvement in fuel per seat. 14% improvement will make us as efficient as today’s 787. If we couple that with the lower maintenance costs and the higher passenger count of the A330 we have an airplane that will deliver lower cash operating costs than that of the 787 and lets not talk about price. But I can tell you that if we put everything together we will have a much better proposition to the airlines than the 787 has.”

For our readers Airbus noted: “Cabin evolution through an innovative use of the cabin space, the A330-900neo will accommodate up to 10 additional seats (from 300 to 310), while the A330-800neo will seat up to six additional passengers (from 246 to 252) – and retain the same high comfort standard as today’s A330, with 18-inch wide seats in economy class. Moreover, all passengers will enjoy a 21st century on-board experience, including fourth-generation high-definition in-flight entertainment (IFE), full connectivity plus the same full-LED mood lighting as in the A330’s big brother – the A350 XWB. The LED cabin lighting will be lighter and cheaper to maintain than traditional illumination while offering unlimited mood-lighting customization scenarios.”

We wondered about the IFE statement and note that Airbus also referred to the IFE on the A350 as fourth generation. So what they’re saying is that they expect AVANT and Panasonic’s eX3, which is what delivers on today’s A330s, to carry over to the A330neo, possibly with some new features and capabilities being developed in the meantime.

There have been a lot of orders for newer Boeing and Airbus wide-bodies and backlogs could push out deliveries for those planes for five or six years. Airbus says they can deliver the “modified” A330 in less than four years. The expected price is in the category as the $250+ million dollar Boeing B787 plane price range. Since the A350 (300 – 350 pax) runs around $295 million dollars and seats 300 to 250 passengers, it makes an interesting playing field in the years to come. Luckily, Boeing and Airbus “own” this large, wide-body market but we predict the real competition will be with future, narrow-body planes as there are at least five manufacturers in that one.

Editors Note 1: Air Lease Corp. agreed to order 25 A330neo-900s for delivery beginning in 2018, and noted that, “at $275m for -900, the A330neo has a “compelling price difference” compared to any other widebody”.

Editors Note 2: When interviewed by an Aviation Week reporter, Jim McNerney, Boeing CEO backtracked on his “No more moon shots…” statement. He went on to explain – “What I would like to have done is pursued 70 percent of the technology that still would have satisfied 95 percent of [customer desires]. It would have gotten to them quicker, and it would have cost us less. I can think of five or six specific examples of things we did that didn’t add much to the performance or the efficiency of the airplane. We’ve just got to be a little more careful.” Naturally, Aviation Week next asked, if the B787 was a mistake and Mr. McNerney noted, “That’s not the point I was trying to make—the 787 is a wild success. We built a very compelling airplane, but we could have gotten it into the field a couple of years earlier. It would have cost us less, and our customers would have had 95 percent of the performance sooner. You get excited about these projects, and things creep into the design and you lose discipline sometimes. We just need to be reminded about that.” Looks like a confession to us!

Editors Note 3: The 2014 APEX EXPO (Sept. 15 – 18) in Anaheim registration can be found here and the Aircraft Exteriors Expo Americas (Seattle, WA Oct. 14- 16) free registration can be found here.

  • Leading lessor announces first commitment for A330neo

Farnborough | July 14, 2014– Air Lease Corporation (ALC), the Los Angeles based aircraft leasing company, has announced a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for 25 A330-900neo aircraft, becoming the first launch customer for the new Airbus Widebody. ALC simultaneously announced a firm order for 60 A321neo aircraft. The contact was signed today at the Farnborough International Airshow by Steven F. Udvar-Házy, Air Lease Corporation’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer and Fabrice Brégier, Airbus President and CEO.

“The recently launched A330neo is a well-suited addition to ALC’s fleet as we continue to provide our customers with the most modern, fuel efficient aircraft on the market,” said Steven F. Udvar-Házy, Air Lease Corporation’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “The A330neo, like the A320neo Family, will have success in the medium range segment due to its combination of high reliability, exceptional comfort and low operating costs. We see a significant market opportunity for the A330neo and we’re pleased that the first order bears ALC’s name. The A321neo credentials, such as its lower fuel-burn, high reliability and wider, more comfortable cabin, also fit well in our product portfolio of innovative, profitable aircraft.”

“When a leading lessor, ALC, is the first to sign up for a new aircraft, it’s a loud and clear signal that you’ve got it right. This significant order is a strong endorsement of both our A330neo and A320neo, confirming they fully meet the needs of the world’s most demanding airlines,” said Fabrice Brégier, Airbus President and CEO. “The continuing success of the A320neo, paves the way for the A330neo and proves that our incremental innovation strategy to deliver reliable, innovative and efficient products at the right time, is what the market wants.”

Including today’s order, ALC’s total orders and commitments for Airbus aircraft reaches 225, of which 200 are firm orders (50 A320ceo Family, 110 A320neo Family, 15 A330 Family, 25 A350 XWB Family) plus the MoU for 25 A330neo’s. ALC will announce engine selections for the 60 A321neo aircraft at a later date.

The A330-800neo and the A330-900neo are two new members of the Airbus Widebody Family launched in July 2014 with first deliveries scheduled to start in Q4 2017. The A330neo incorporates latest generation Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, aerodynamic enhancements and new cabin features. Benefitting from the unbeatable economics, versatility and high reliability of the A330, the A330neo reduces fuel consumption by 14% per seat, making it the most cost efficient, medium range Widebody aircraft on the market. In addition to greater fuel savings, A330neo operators will also benefit from a range increase of around 400 nautical miles and of course all the operational commonality advantages of the Airbus Family.

  • Adds new members to its market-leading Widebody Family

Farnborough | July 14, 2014 Following a decision by the Board of Directors of the Group, Airbus has launched the A330-800neo and A330-900neo, two new members of its Widebody Family, which will incorporate latest generation Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, aerodynamic enhancements and new cabin features. Benefitting from the unbeatable economics, versatility and high reliability of the A330, the A330neo reduces fuel consumption by 14% per seat, making it the most cost efficient, medium range Widebody aircraft on the market. In addition to greater fuel savings, A330neo operators will benefit from a range increase of up to 400 nautical miles and all the operational commonality advantages of the Airbus Family. Deliveries of the A330neo will start in Q4 2017.

“The A330 is a very important margin contributor for our Group. It’s also one of the most reliable and efficient commercial aircraft ever. Customers love it. With our decision to re-engine the plane, we will keep the A330 flying high for many more years to come. The development costs for the A330neo will be incurred from 2015 to 2017 with an impact of around -70 basis points on Airbus Group’s 2015 Return on Sales target. However, we have a very good business case and the A330neo, once in service, will continue to significantly contribute to our group’s earnings,” said Tom Enders, CEO of Airbus Group.

“The A330neo is the logical evolution of our reliable and versatile A330 Family. It provides an optimal solution for airlines around the world looking to minimise their fuel and operating costs while offering best-in-class comfort to their passengers,” said Fabrice Brégier, Airbus President and CEO. “We see strong market potential for the A330neo, and like its market-leading smaller sister, the A320neo, we are confident this new aircraft will be a success in the medium-haul segment. We are again leveraging a proven aircraft with a wide operator base and making it even more efficient with the latest innovations and technology developments.”

In addition to the new Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, the A330neo will feature incremental innovations, including aerodynamic enhancements such as new A350 XWB inspired winglets, an increased wing span and new engine pylons. Pilots will benefit from latest generation cockpit systems, and the already very comfortable A330 cabin will be further optimised to offer up to ten additional 18 inch wide seats. Passengers are winners too, as they will be able to enjoy a 21st century on-board experience with for example, fourth generation In Flight Entertainment (3D films), mood-lighting and full connectivity.

Photos and video of our commercial announcements will be available for media to download from the Airbus broadcast room on www.airbus.com/presscentre/