Abuja - Nigerian startup Green Africa Airways has placed an order commitment for fifty Boeing 737 MAX 8, plus fifty in option. The deal is the largest aircraft sales contract ever in Africa.
Headquartered at Lagos-Murtala Mohammed Airport, the future Nigerian airline has committed to purchase up to one hundred new-generation single-aisle aircraft from Boeing. The contract is valued at $11.7 billion at list price.
It will appear on Boeing's backlog once finalized. The American aircraft manufacturer did not provide a specific delivery date.
Today is a historic day for the Nigerian and African aviation industry,said in a statement Babawande Afolabi, founder and CEO of Green Africa Airways.
This landmark agreement brings us much closer to our longstanding dream of building a world-class airline, which will open new and positive prospects for millions of customers. This agreement is a bold symbol of the dynamism, resilience and entrepreneurial power of the next generation of Nigerians and Africans,he added.
Green Airways Africa, which received its AOC (Air Operator Certificate) from the Nigerian government, is led by a group of industry executives headed by Tom Horton, former CEO of American Airlines, Virasb Vahidi, the former chief commercial officer of the same airline, and William Shaw, founder and former CEO of VivaColombia .
The new airline explains its goal as to provide safe, quality and affordable air travel and wants to contribute to the economic development of Nigeria and the African continent. At the first stage, Green Africa Airways will focus on developing a domestic network in Nigeria market and then create a strong pan-African network.
Virasb Vahidi says that Nigeria is particularly well placed to host the next major airline. The strategic partnership with Boeing will allow Green Africa Airways to expand and improve Nigerian air transport and further strengthen relations between the United States, Nigeria, and Africa.
According to Boeing's 20-year market outlook, airlines in Africa will need 1,190 new aircraft over the next two decades. The growth potential of air travel in Nigeria and Africa is extraordinary. The fleets in the continent are expected to more than double in the same period.