SpiceJet looks to buy 100 narrow-body aircraft

Indian low-cost airline SpiceJet is planning to purchase around 100 narrow-body aircraft from Boeing and Airbus.


The potential deal, which could be worth around $11bn at list prices, will be the carrier's largest-ever aircraft order.


SpiceJet is looking to buy Airbus A320neo and Boeing 737 MAX, and plans to fund the purchase through equity or debt facilities.


SpiceJet CFO Kiran Koteshwar was quoted by Press Trust of India as saying: "We need to have some long-term aircraft order so that we can put a business plan around it.


"The next logical step, after the revival is that we need to have a long-term vision and for that we need aircraft order."


"This will give us economies of scale and for our vendors and suppliers to see that we are growing."


The firm currently operates a fleet of 34 aircraft, including 18 Boeing 737s, two Airbus A319 on wet-lease, and 14 Bombardier Q400.


Latest plans come after SpiceJet was supported by chairman Ajay Singh in January, at a time when the company had failed to pay creditors due to a cash shortage.


Koteshwar was cited by Reuters as saying: "SpiceJet has always been constrained by the lack of long-term orders.


"This will give us economies of scale and for our vendors and suppliers to see that we are growing."


For the three-month period ending in June, SpiceJet recorded net earnings of Rs718m ($11.26m), compared with the loss of Rs1.24bn ($19.4m) for the same period last year.


According to Boeing's 20-year market outlook, India is estimated to require more than 1,600 new aircraft between 2013 and 2032.