Financial Times EXTRACT
EasyJet plans to buy up to 75 aircraft
By Kevin Done, Aerospace Correspondent
Published: January 6 2002 20:24 | Last Updated: January 6 2002 22:02
EasyJet is planning to purchase up to 75 new aircraft in what would be the largest order ever placed by a low-cost airline in Europe.
The deal pitches Boeing and Airbus, the world's leading aircraft makers, into head-to-head competition for an order which could be worth up to $4bn at list prices.
It will be the first time a European no-frills carrier has considered buying from Airbus rather than its US rival.
The EasyJet order will attract hefty discounts, as the airline takes advantage of the depressed state of the world market for new and second- hand aircraft.
The planned order confirms that EasyJet is maintaining its expansion in spite of the events of September 11.
Ray Webster, EasyJet chief executive, said that discussions had been held with Boeing about placing more orders for the 737-700, while talks with Airbus on purchasing the rival 150-seat A319 had intensified.
Mr Webster said that EasyJet was aiming to expand its fleet to more than 100 aircraft by the end of 2007, to support a growth in capacity of about 25 per cent a year.
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