SInGAPORE_AIR
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Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 5:31 pm

Virgin Atlantic Airways Limited - 49% owned by Singapore Airlines Limited - A Member of Star Alliance- The Airline Network For Earth - and a participant of the KrisFlyer frequent flyer programme - has said that it is looking to order up to £1 billion / US$1.6941 billion.

Capacity this year will increase 7% with the arrival of new A340-600s. The Airline wants to add new aircraft which are more efficient and cheaper to fly to new destinations in the United States of America, the Carribean, Africa and Asia.

"We are talking to Boeing about the 777s and Airbus about more A340-600s. The 777 is a serious option for us," said CEO Steven Ridgway. Such planes would be delivered in 2005 and 2006.

The market is "still tough," and "we are still small enough, we are riding the storm pretty well. This year is not any easier than last year," added Mr. Ridgway.

More information at the Business Times Singapore / Bloomberg website

Information was gathered from the above hyperlinked webpage. Information was rephrased and not copied and pasted. Currency conversion from United Kingdom Sterling to U.S.A. Dollars courtesy of the Singaporeair.com Currency Converter

[Edited 2003-10-28 09:44:59]
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teahan
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 5:42 pm

If he is talking about A340-600s, than it must be the B777-300ER from Boeing. While I generally believe anything can happen in aircraft orders, it makes absolutely no sense for Virgin to operate both A340-600s and B777-300ERs in such a small fleet (B777-200s to replace A340-300s are another story).

"We are talking to Boeing about the 777s and Airbus about more A340-600s. The 777 is a serious option for us,"

can be translated as

"Oh Airbus, look we are talking to Boeing, please give us a lower price or we might go with them"

Jeremiah
Goodbye SR-LX MD-11 / 6th of March 1991 to the 31st of October 2004
 
Korg747
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 5:52 pm

It probably is a waste of Boeing's time and money to talk to VS any way. I would be very surprised and my eyes would be as wide as earth if VS orders ONE 777. I would love to see VS having 777s. But like many people said and I 'm just going to repeat it just for the heck of it. It's going to be a pride thing(the 4 engine crap)
Please excuse my English!
 
Shenzhen
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 5:59 pm

I'll bet Virgin are telling Airbus that Boeing are offering to come in and purchase all their A340s, their spares, and provide a 40 percent discount.

However, I think Airbus have been at this game a little longer then Virgin, and they'll do just fine.
 
behramjee
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 7:00 pm

Yup it will be very very stupid on VSs part to order B 773s and have them alongside B 744s and A 346s...logic and basic sense would say to order more A 346s or sell all of them and replace them all with B 773ERs!!!

Werent the A 346s replacing the A 343s? If so when are they being phased out?
 
MYT332
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 7:48 pm

The A343's are being replaced by the A346's yes, but when, i'm not sure. I imagine it's why some A343's still havent been re-painted in the new c/s, although why have some been?

Wouldn't Virgin be best to keep their 4 engine aircraft for if/when LROPS comes in. They'd be able to fly routes that the 777's couldn't?? Does anybody see were i'm going with this i'm not too sure myself,  Confused
One Life, Live it.
 
HUYfan
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 8:24 pm

It HAS to be a dead cert that VS will go Airbus. They would look pretty stupid if they opted for twinjets after their blatant slandering of twinjets. Airbus it is!

Regards

Mike
 
MD-11 forever
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 8:44 pm

@Singapore_Air

What a pity indeed......... I hope that VS, 49% owned by Singapore Airlines Limited, a proud Member of Star Alliance (why the hell isn't VS there yet?) the network for earth is choosing and selecting their planes by commercial and economical reasons and not "by the flavour of the month"!  Big grin

Cheers, Thomas
 
vsmike
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 11:25 pm

Isn't corporate rivalry great!?! If VS talk to Boeing, the price & terms of Airbus come waaaay down. Simple.

Sorry, no 777 for VS anytime soon. No need for fleet diversification like that. Keepin' it simple...

VSM
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SInGAPORE_AIR
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 11:31 pm

"So why not put our minds at ease and quote your source for your earlier statements?"

Manzoori: It's somewhere in the forums but because the search feature I feel is very inadequate now I shall not bother..yet
Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
 
JBirdAV8r
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 11:35 pm

Funny how often the enlightened are often put down but the ignorant and stupid.

Alright, Mohammed  Big grin You win the award for the most insecure person of the day.

Anyhow...
I'm jumping on the "Branson propaganda" bandwagon for this. While I would love to see VS get some B777's, I just don't see it making loads of sense.

I got my head checked--by a jumbo jet
 
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RayChuang
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 11:46 pm

I think VS is trying to get a decent deal on about 8-12 A340-600HGW's that will be delivered from 2005 on.

Mind you, it'll be kind of unlikely VS will fly the A346HGW to SFO; SFO is a very popular destination for VS and it's more likely VS will eventually fly the A380-800 to SFO instead.  Smile
 
motech722
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 11:47 pm

I look at the article and the title says it all, "considering". The title does not say that Virgin is going to buy B777s, so it is just propaganda. Its as a few of you have already said, VS is just playing the field. If Boeing offers one deal, then VS can probably get a better deal from Airbus.


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Korg747, you're probably right, "it probably is a waste of Boeing's time and money to talk to VS any way." True, but in the business of aircraft sales, any potential sale is needed. Airbus has tried to break into the Japanese market for years, but so far hasn't (except for the A321 deal with ANA, which now ANA is replacing with Boeings). If Boeing could get a Virgin order, then that certainly would be news, but it seems that VS is just playing the field, which is the smart thing for any airline to do.

Take Care
 
LMP737
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Tue Oct 28, 2003 11:52 pm

IMHO Virgin is using Boeing as a bargaining chip in their dealings with Airbus. I suspect that Boeing is more than happy to do this. At the very least they could help Virgin get a good deal on A340's. Thus cutting into Airbuses profit margin on the aircraft.
Never take financial advice from co-workers.
 
GoAround
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 12:40 am

~: 4 Engines 4 Long Haul :~

So what do you think they're going to go for?

GoAround
GoAround
 
Shamrock_747
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 12:54 am

"4 Engines 4 Long Haul" is just a slogan to get publicity and make people think that VS aircraft are 'safer' than rivals twinjets like BA 777s. I don't think Branson actually believes 777s are dangerous!

Declan
 
Jaws707
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 12:56 am

I know Virgin is kind of limited by that 4 engine dabacle, but I personally think the aircraft that would suit them best for opening new routes and increasing frequencies on others would be the A332. If the A346 eventually is the smallest member of the fleet, I would imagine it would be very difficult opening new routes, as those routes would instantly have to support an aircraft that has almost 400 seats.
 
Alitalia744
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 1:02 am

People,

4 Engines 4 Long Haul is nothing more than an ad slogan or a portion of branding. If VS deems 777's are the best aircraft suited to the routes required, they will order it. History proves marketing campaigns and overall positioning (whether strategic positioning, marketing, or equity) changes over time.

I doubt VS will not look at the 777 simply because it is 2 engined.
Some see lines, others see between the lines.
 
GoAround
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 1:05 am

True... but Branson's not one to back out of his word, is he?

I'm sure they'd find something to say, but this looks like Virgin digging for a good deal from Airbus...

GoAround
GoAround
 
Arsenal@LHR
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 1:08 am

Maybe Branson will order some 777's as revenge against Airbus for not letting him have Concorde?  Big grin
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L1011Fan
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 1:17 am

On the one hand it makes sense for Boeing to play along in this game (even though it's unlikely they will win an order) just to see Airbus' margins severely cut.

On the other hand it would be fun to punish VS (for wasting Boeing's time pretending to want 777's) by issuing a press release stating that Boeing is not in negotiations with VS. That would certainly make VS angry b/c Airbus won't discount their planes nearly as much.

 
airchabum
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 2:15 am

Is Boeing selling that many a/c at the moment that they can afford to turn their noses up at a potential £1B order? I think not. VS is a significant Boeing customer (13th brand new 744 delivered this week) so it's not a foregone conclusion that the order will go to Airbus.

As I've said before, the 346 is a very good a/c for the routes that VS currently uses it on, ie mainly Far East. However a lot of Virgin's network is US Eastern Seaboard, India, Nigeria (with more routes to India, Africa and Mid East being sought) so an a/c that can fly 12hrs with max payload is not really required.

In a Virgin boardroom somewhere.....
Head of plane buying: "Hey guys I've just negotiated a deal for a fleet of new 777's that will save us £5M per year in operating costs!!"
CEO: "That's great! Oh but hang on, we've got a slogan painted on some of our a/c"
Head of plane buying: "Ok well forget it then"
I think it'll take more than a stupid slogan (which probably only people on a.net really notice anyway) to decide the airlines fleet for the next 10yrs.
Biggidy biggidy bong
 
airchabum
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 2:24 am

Behramjee

2 of the A340-300's are leaving the fleet this year. They were originally planned to leave as the 600's arrived but I'm not sure how many will be retained or how long they'll stay for.

Singapore Air

Why isn't the 346 'flavour of the month'? I work for VS and we're very happy with it. Care to enlighten us?

RayChuang

I think you're getting some A340 flts to SFO soon but will check the details at work later.

Cheers
Biggidy biggidy bong
 
SInGAPORE_AIR
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 3:16 am

Well I read on the forum that Virgin Atlantic and Hong Kong's de facto flag carrier were not happy with the landing gear component (dunno which) that need replacing more times than expected and the despatch reliability is not as promised...
Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
 
ConcordeBoy
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 4:37 am

Well I read on the forum that Virgin Atlantic and Hong Kong's de facto flag carrier were not happy with the landing gear component (dunno which) that need replacing more times than expected and the despatch reliability is not as promised...

not to mention the severely overweight wing on the currently delivered models  Big grin
Faire du ciel le plus bel endroit de la terre c'est impossible sans Concorde!
 
airchabum
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 5:15 am

Singapore Air

I don't know about CX but VS's first few a/c did need to go for a landing gear modification. It was just a one-off thing though and not unexpected for a brand-new a/c. Apart from one week a couple of months ago when the whole 346 fleet seemed to be suffering (unrelated) problems, reliability has been pretty good.

Incidentally...is this actually 'news' or is it just a newspaper re-hashing an old story to fill a bit of space?!  Wink/being sarcastic I haven't seen anything about this at work or on the BBC/FT sites.

Cheers
Biggidy biggidy bong
 
dalecary
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 7:02 am

Everyone seems to forget VS were on the verge of ordering 777s before S11. I believe they may have gone as far as signing an LOI or MOU. They have seriously considered the plane before and they are seriously considering it again. The 773ER will undoubtedly be a more efficient beast than the 346/346HGW for the majority of VS's route network. This will play a major part in the decision. The 2 "real" advantages of the 346HGW over the 773ER are a slight range advantage and better hot-n-high performance. Hot-n-high performance is hardly going to be a problem for VS as it could be for EK.
VS 343s are reportedly already starting to be retired, with 2 apparently leaving to go to a French start-up operation out of Nantes very soon. Certainly, the 773ER would be a much better proposition economically on Trans-Atlantic flights.
We will have to see whether the operational advantage of the 773ER is enough to outweigh the fleet commonality of the 346/346HGW. I think it will be a pretty tight decision,actually.

Dale.
 
airchabum
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 7:38 am

Dale

Good points. I had heard that the 2 343's leaving the fleet this year would be going to the French Air Force but I've not heard anything recently.

I wouldn't have thought that VS would be looking at 777-300ER's as they are too similar to the 346 in capacity and range, but as I said above I can see a requirement for a smaller a/c (772 or 330) to operate 6-9hr sectors for which the 744 or 346 are not best suited.

As you say, I don't think that the decision is a foregone conclusion.

Cheers
Biggidy biggidy bong
 
B2707SST
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 7:58 am

With new figures from 777-300ER flight testing, the A340-600 has a 5 nm range advantage  Big grin, although forthcoming HGW versions of both may change this. With standardized seating configurations, the two aircraft are as identical in terms of range and pax capacity as any Boeing/Airbus planes have ever been. I can't really see it happening unless Virgin is very unhappy with their A340s, but if Virgin does sign for the 777-300ER, I wonder if SQ will as well.

--B2707SST
Keynes is dead and we are living in his long run.
 
gigneil
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 8:41 am

With new figures from 777-300ER flight testing, the A340-600 has a 5 nm range advantage  , although forthcoming HGW versions of both may change this.

Boeing will be able to offer less restrictions at max range on the 773ER, but no actual additional range.

Airbus believes they can add a bit more of both.

N
 
artsyman
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 9:06 am

While all of you are so quick to rule out Boeing here, please note that Virgin has more Boeing aircraft than they do Airbus when you consider Virgin Blue and the upcoming Virgin America which will almost certainly be all 737 series aircraft. I can also say that Virgin are not overly pleased with the A346, I have heard this from numerous relevent sources within Virgin, and oddly enough the same is true for CX. I know that Virgin were looking at some more 744 aircraft also, so it is far from a done deal with Airbus

Jeremy
 
dalecary
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 9:07 am

As an afterthought VS said they want the planes in 2005 and 2006. The 346HGW won't be available until 2006,whereas the 773ER is available from 2004 and the 346 is obviously available now. So, maybe it is 773ER v 346 or a 772ER/773ER combo v 346.
Why haven't VS shown any interest in the 332/333? Is it too small and range restricted?

Dale.
 
captaink
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 9:32 am

4 engines 4 longhaul? That is just Bransons idea of having a little by mocking BA..

But all jokes aside, airlines want to survive and make money. If an airline sees that a particular aircraft is cheaper to operate, whatever saying they had before will not make any difference. Maintaining pride for who? Most passengers don't even know where the engine on an aircraft is farless for them to be concerned with the airlines preference for 4 engined aircraft.

BA has saved a lot of my money by replacing the 747 with the 777 on caribbean routes. And VS sees that the 777 will be a cheaper and more profitable option, they will get them.. Its all about saving the business.....
There is something special about planes....
 
ConcordeBoy
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 10:16 am

People in this board have assumed the 773ER is the bird VS is looking at....

..but the possibility still remains that they'll order 772ER to replace A343 and continue with the A346 as a largership. Who knows at this point.
Faire du ciel le plus bel endroit de la terre c'est impossible sans Concorde!
 
B2707SST
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 12:03 pm

Gigneil -

Neither the A340-600 or the 777-300ER with normal pax loads is operating at max range, i.e. the tanks aren't full, so payload can be traded for greater or lesser range. Performance gains over predictions on the 773ER give more range for a given payload, more payload for a given range, or more of each. According to Boeing:

The additional thrust [of the GE90-115B] increases the 777-300ER’s maximum take-off weight to 759,600 pounds – almost 100,000 pounds more than the 777-300 – with virtually no difference in handling characteristics during takeoff, flight and landing.

That power comes at very little expense. Fuel mileage testing shows a 1 percent improvement in fuel efficiency over original predictions. Such an improvement can reduce by 106,400 gallons (402,724 liters) annually the amount of fuel one airplane uses. That’s enough to power 130 automobiles for one year.

It also increases the airplane’s range by 75 nautical miles (139 kilometers) to 7,495 nautical miles (13,881 kilometers); or it increases payload by 2,400 pounds (1,089 kilograms) -- passenger or cargo – on a 7,000 nautical mile (12,964 kilometer) flight.

http://www.boeing.com/news/releases/2003/q2/nr_030618g.html

Airbus' advertised range for the A346 is 7,500 nm, giving it a statistically insignificant range advantage of 5 nm.

If you're referring to the HGW versions, the 773ER's tanks are not full at typical payloads. With a higher MTOW, more fuel can be carried for a given payload, resulting in longer range. The higher takeoff weights on both aircraft will shift out the payload-range curve, allowing either greater range, more payload, or both.

--B2707SST

[Edited 2003-10-29 04:06:12]
Keynes is dead and we are living in his long run.
 
dalecary
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 12:12 pm

There is speculation at the Orders forum that the VS deal is tied up with the SQ 773ER/346 competition. In fact, it appears VS made their 380 order from SQ's dealings with Airbus. It looks as though 49% owner SQ might have been able to negotiate better terms than VS. So, if SQ goes with the 773ER(and I think they will), it makes it that more likely that VS also will go with this plane.
I don't think the 340 has won this competition by a long way ,yet(but it still may).

Dale.
 
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RayChuang
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 12:21 pm

Dale,

Given that SQ will receive their A340-500's, I have this feeling that Airbus may be about to offer a very lucrative maintenence deal that combines the A340-500/600 series and the A380-800 into the service deal for SQ. If that happens, I wouldn't be surprised that SQ ends up flying the A345, A340-600HGW and A380-800 all at the same time for their very long routes, and that could mean VS will likely get the A340-600HGW that will be delivered from 2006 on--as many as 8-12 planes.
 
ConcordeBoy
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RE: Virgin Atlantic Looks To 777s, A340s For £1B Order

Wed Oct 29, 2003 12:26 pm

and you think Boeing's just going to sit around and let that all go down... particularly considering that the longhaul needs of the world's second largest 777 operator (and the world's largest windbag  Laugh out loud) are up for grabs??
Faire du ciel le plus bel endroit de la terre c'est impossible sans Concorde!

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