Singapore Airlines' $10.3b order

From:         hac@kinkoman.res.utc.com (H. Andrew Chuang)
Organization: United Technologies Research Center
Date:         22 Jun 94 16:57:50 
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Today (6/22), Singapore Airlines (SIA) announced an order worth up to
$10.3 billion.  The order includes 22 Boeing 747-400's (11 firm + 11
options) and 30 Airbus A340-300E's (10 firm + 20 options).  Pratt &
Whitney will supply the engines for the B747 while CFMI will supply the
engines for the A340.  SIA can convert the B747 options to B777's, and
the A340-300 options to A330's or A340-200's.  (I infer from the news
release that the new designation for the A340-300X powered by the
CFM56-5C4 is A340-300E, perhaps, E stands for Extended-range?)  The firm
orders are valued at $3.5 billion.

The A340 order is SIA's second.  IMHO, the order is an interesting one
because SIA has yet to receive the first aircraft from its first A340
order.  For a relatively conservative airline like SIA to make such a
decision, the initial A340 operating data must be fairly impressive (unless
the French and German are giving additional landing rights to SIA :-).  I
would think this is a big boost for the A340 program.  Ever since
Northwest's cancellation of 20 A340's in 1992, Airbus has picked up orders
of 16 new A340's only: Virgin Atlantic's 4, Cathay Pacific's 6 (plus 4
leased aircraft originally destined for Philippine Airlines), and Air
Canada's 6.  (Am I right, Karl?  It's a lot easier to keep track of the new
orders when the airline industry is so depressed :-)

Boeing is probably a little disappointed that SIA did not make any firm
commitment to the B777.  IMHO, the B777 should be THE plane for the
Asian market, especially the B-market and the proposed stretched versions.
Nonetheless, the SIA acquisition is the first significant B747 order since
late 1992 (Saudia's order of 5 B747 is not insignificant, but the order
has yet to be finalized).  BTW, I believe, with this order, SIA have
ordered more B747's than any other airlines except JAL.  JAL have ordered
~100 B747's, SIA ~85, and BA ~75.

With the Saudia's $6 billion and SIA's $3.5 billion orders plus the
up-coming $5 billion order from China, the airframe industry is not doing
too bad this year.  Other than Air Canada's A319 purchase, most of the
big orders have gone to Boeing.

Just for reference, last year's big orders include: UPS's order of 30
B767F's, Continental's order of 50 B737's, 25 B757's, 12 767's, and
5 B777's, Korean Air's 8 B777's, and Southwest's 63 B737-700's.
Although, Continental's order was very sizable, it was somewhat
misleading.  Most of the order was merely a "re-commitment" of previous
orders made before it filed for Chapter 11.  For Boeing, it did get some
extra from the Continental deal: Continental switched the A330 orders to
a combination of B767's and B777's.  BTW, other than Korean's undecided
B777 powerplant and Continental's R-R-powered B757's, all of last year's
major engine orders went to General Electric!

H Andrew Chuang (hac@utrc.utc.com)