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Vistara Plans for Expansion with Airbus & Boeing Order

Indian Airline Vistara has announced a $3.1 billion order for A320/A321neo and B787 aircraft.

The joint venture between Tata and Singapore Airlines announced the purchase of 13 A320neo/A321neo aircraft (the exact breakup is as yet unknown) as well a six Boeing 787-9.

“This order is very important for Vistara because we always felt tat internatonal operations will give us a leverage on further improving our financial performance,” CEO Leslie Thng said. “As a full service model in an extremely competitive local market, Vistara is not yet profitable.”

Vistara currently operates an all-Airbus fleet and surely, Airbus was hoping this would continue, culminating in an order for the A330neo instead of the 787. It would have strengthened the order book for the A330neo, which is struggling. Those hopes have been dashed with the announcement of the order.

In addition to the purchase, Vistara will be leasing 37 A320neos and has options on another 4 787-9. The sheer volume of this is an indication of their expansions plans. The Airbus narrow-bodies will be powered by CFM engines and will be delivered between 2019 and 2023. The Boeing wide-bodies will be delivered between 2020 and 2022.

As aviation changes around the world, and with Airbus’ bringing the Bombardier C-Series jets into the family, it is becoming more and more apparent that in the times to come, Airbus will hold the major share of the narrow-body market while Boeing will dominate the wide-body market. What strikes us as strange is the announcements of orders just a few days before a key airshow event – Farnborough Airshow is starting in just 3 days, and yet – Airbus and JetBlue announced the order of 60 A220s yesterday and now, this announcement from Vistara. Surely, it would make more sense for these triumphs to be revealed at the airshow?