LN-MOW, I was able to access the article. Here you go:
Delta sold 737 jet slots to Lombard-sources
By Kathy Fieweger
CHICAGO, Oct 17 (Reuters) - Delta Air Lines Inc (NYAS
Air Limited (Kenya)">SE: DAL
- news) . has sold 11 Boeing (NYAS
Air Limited (Kenya)">SE: BA
- news) 737-800s scheduled for delivery in 2005 to Lombard Aviation Capital, an aircraft finance unit of Royal Bank of Scotland (LAS
Air Limited (Kenya)">SE: RBS.L - news) , according to sources familiar with the matter.
Delta, in its third-quarter earnings release earlier this week, said it had agreed to sell the 11 737-800s to an unnamed third party, reducing its capital spending by about $500 million through 2005, while incurring a fourth-quarter charge of $26 million.
The deal also included an option for 10 additional aircraft scheduled for delivery in 2006 and 2007.
Atlanta-based Delta, the No. 3 U.S. airline, also announced it would defer until 2008 delivery of eight more 737-800 aircraft originally slated for 2005, but said it would still take delivery of two 777-200s in 2005 as scheduled.
Selling aircraft delivery positions outright is not typical, the sources said. Airlines generally arrange sale/leaseback transactions or delay taking deliveries.
"What that tells you is that Delta made some money off of this," said one source who asked not to be identified.
A spokeswoman for Delta declined to comment. Officials of Lombard Aviation could not immediately be reached to comment.
Boeing declined to comment on the specifics of the transaction.
"We are going to be selling these airplanes to Delta and what Delta does with them after that is between them and their third party," said Boeing spokesman Nicolaas Meijer.
NEWER 737S HOLDING UP
While demand for many older, classic jet models including some of the 737 family is down sharply since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, the newer 737-800 series has held up relatively well.
Executives of Lombard Aviation, which entered the aircraft lessor ranks shortly after the U.S. airline industry staggered into an unprecedented financial crisis in late 2001, have stated they believe the jet leasing market has reached a low point.
The lessor is said to be aggressively adding to its aircraft portfolio in anticipation of a market rebound.
When airline traffic fully recovers and airlines begin to post consistently profitable results, desirable aircraft will become more scarce and lease rates will rise.
Delta reported its third-quarter loss was halved to $164 million, or $1.36 per share, compared with a net loss of $326 million, or $2.67, a year earlier. But it also forecast a loss of between $225 million and $275 million in the fourth quarter. (Additional reporting by Chris Stetkiewicz in Seattle)
Sounds to me like, if AS
is going to get any of DL
's 738s, they'll have to go through Lombard to get it. If not, then the new AS
planes will come from someone else, perhaps even direct from Boeing.
I have never flown AS
either, flying them to Seattle would be an interesting change from DL
though I do like DL
. They were my preferred carrier for years till I discovered Southwest Airlines. I'm truly going to miss the 763s to Seattle though. I never flew on one, but in the mid-90s Delta had an L-1011 on that route and I did get to fly that as my first ever airline flight, which was fantastic, though I barely remember it.
A couple of quick questions:
How old are Alaska's MD
-80s? They can't be too terribly old, so why the desire to start phasing them out? If they wanted more planes couldn't they pick up some secondhand, low-cycle MD
-80s? Production of them ended only three years ago, they shouldn't be hard to find.
How is Alaska's onboard service? I've heard a few things about them, but not about their service. What I heard was what a friend of mine who works with them through a travel agency thinks of them, and she had some choice words for that carrier. Apparently, Alaska's reservations staff don't treat travel agents very well at all, in fact are quite rude, and my friend isn't one to lie either. I wonder if Alaska's onboard staff are friendlier?
[Edited 2003-11-08 18:12:26]