Cebu Air Inc., the operator of Cebu Pacific, is acquiring 26 turboprop jets for $673 million, as a part of the budget airline’s fleet renewal program for inter-island services.
Cebu Air said it placed orders for 16 ATR 72-600, with options to acquire another 10 ATR 72-600 from ATR, the European turboprop aircraft manufacturer for $673 million, based on current list prices.
The transaction will see Cebu Pacific double its turboprop fleet size, subject to the execution of final purchase documents.
“We have been operating ATR aircraft since 2008, and they have enabled us to bring safe, reliable, and affordable air transport to smaller cities and islands throughout the Philippines. This order is an affirmation of our commitment to extend the convenience of affordable air travel to even more communities,” Cebu Pacific president and chief executive Lance Gokongwei said.
“We are very pleased to be the launch customer of this new configuration of the ATR 72-600, as this will allow us to offer our customers more seats at even lower fares,” he said.
Cebu Pacific currently operates a fleet of eight ATR 72-500 aircraft, which will be retired as the new aircraft enter the service.
ATR chief executive Patrick de Castelbajac said ATR was “very happy to continue our partnership with one of the leading airlines in Southeast Asia and to contribute to the expansion of its network throughout the islands of the archipelago.”
“Cebu Pacific will also be able to benefit from the vast support network for ATR operators in Asia. When their first ATR 72-600 arrives, there will be five ATR pilot training centers in the region,” Castelbajac said.
The entry into service of the new ATR 72-600 will provide Cebu Pacific with new generation aircraft to meet growing demand in the Philippines for inter-island services.
This will allow Cebu Pacific to expand its operations not only on main airports but also to several other airports around the country, contributing to the development of regional transport, tourism, and local economy.
The ATR 72-600 ordered by Cebu Pacific will be equipped with the high-density Armonia cabin, the widest cabin in the turboprop market.
It will be equipped with 78 slim-line seats and wider overhead bins with 30 percent more stowage space. These new technological innovations further enhance space and comfort for passengers.
Cebu Pacific currently operates a fleet of 55 aircraft comprised of 10 Airbus A319, 31 Airbus A320, 6 Airbus A330 and 8 ATR-72 500 aircraft.
Cebu Pacific expects to take delivery of 7 more brand-new Airbus A320 and 30 Airbus A321neo aircraft between 2015 and 2021.