With all due respect, please read the comments attributed to Walsh in this "LOI". He specifically referred to the spurring of competition. Now, if you want to spur competition, you surely would not limit yourself to a single supplier before the "competition" even starts.
With all due respect, if you only order from one of two vendors, how do you spur competition?
You're focusing on the 737 MAX's price here, but I'm not convinced the MAX deal was necessarily that 'cheap'.
I'm focusing on the MAX's price because everyone I am responding to is claiming Boeing only secured this LoI because they offered IAG a price so low they could not refuse to work with Boeing to take them up on it.
My personal comments on this deal have little to nothing to do with price.
Clearly a major blue-chip group, like IAG, placing such a substantial order for an aircraft which is under serious scrutiny looks like a strong vote of confidence in both the frame and Boeing. Naturally this paves the way for additional orders from other carriers.
The existing 4500-frame customer base (including the two who suffered fatal hull losses) continuing to hold on to their orders is a stronger vote of confidence.
IAG has signaled an intent to take their first MAX five years from now. That is more hedging a bet than a vote of confidence. If they had signaled an intent to take their first MAX five months] from now...