Arik Air Orders Two Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental Airliners
Arik becomes the first African airline to order the newest version of the iconic 747 airliner and only the third airline overall. The order was previously listed on Boeing’s order book webpage, but was attributed to an unidentified customer.
The order was announced during a signing ceremony at the Corporate Council for Africa’s 8th Biennial U.S.-Africa Business Summit in Washington, D.C.
“Air travel within the region continues to grow at a rapid pace and we must prepare our fleet to accommodate that growth,” said Sir JIA Arumemi-Johnson, owner and chairman of Arik Air. “Boeing’s new 747-8 fits perfectly into our long-term planning. It brings the best operating economics for its size, which is important with the increase in fuel prices.”
Lagos-based Arik Air operates a variety of narrowbody and widebody aircraft, including two Airbus A340-500s, nine Boeing 737-700s, four 737-800s (with eight more on order), four Bombardier CRJ-900s and two Bombardier Dash 8 Q400s. The five-year-old airline also has seven Boeing 787-9s on order.
Boeing has struggled to sell their largest passenger plane in great numbers relative to their other aircraft, generating only 27 orders from airline customers since the 747-8 was announced in 2005. Lufthansa (20) and Korean Air (5) account for the other 25 aircraft on order.