Malaysia Airlines has signed a purchase agreement with ATR for 20 ATR 72-600s, with options for a further 16 additional aircraft.
The deal is valued at over US$ 840 million, including options, and deliveries are expected to start by mid 2013.
With this signature, Malaysia Airlines brings to 42 the total of firm ATR 72s purchased since the initial purchase agreement in 2007. The airline currently has 22 ATR 72-500s, operated by business units Firefly (12) and MASwings (10).
The introduction of these aircraft, which are the first ATR -600s to be selected for the growing Malaysian and regional market, will help to strengthen Firefly’s and MASwings position on community markets and business routes.
Besides the 22 ATR 72-500s operated by Firefly and MASwings, Malaysia Airlines also has a fleet of over 100 medium and long-haul A330s, A380s, B737s, B747s and B777s.
The airline has just become a member of oneworld, and operates flights to Asia, Australia/New Zealand, the Middle East, Europe and the US West coast.
Commenting on the deal, Ahmad Jauhari, Chief Executive Officer of Malaysia Airlines, said, “We have been partnering with ATR for the last five years, and we are really satisfied with the outstanding performance and the commercial results that our ATR 72s provide to our growing community networks. The ATR aircraft are clearly playing an important role in the development of Malaysia Airlines, as they connect regional destinations and enable us to feed larger aircraft at our main hubs. The new aircraft will further improve the guest experience on our community airlines as they connect more and more people across Malaysia and the surrounding regions.”
Ignatius Ong, Chief Executive Officer of Firefly, added, “Our exclusive ATR 72 fleet has allowed Firefly to develop a unique high frequency network out of Subang, Penang and Johor Baruh, which greatly benefits our Malaysian communities, as well as the rest of the population in the Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand Growth Triangle (IMT-GT).”
Captain Dato’ Nawawi Awang, Chief Executive Officer of MASwings, said, “We are glad that MASwings’ fleet of ATR 72s can efficiently serve the Sabah and Sarawak (East Malaysian states), and the BIMP-EAGA (Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia and Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area) communities and help to further enhance the tourism industry and the socio-economic development of the region.”