Boeing lost 75 orders for the 737 Max this week, part of a deal with leasing company Avolon. The aircraft were due to be delivered between this year and 2023, but were canceled due to the consequences of the coronavirus pandemic. The Irish company, the third largest in the segment, also removed commitments with Airbus to acquire 4 A330neo widebodies that would be delivered from 2021.
“We are currently facing the most challenging period in the history of commercial aviation. The global fleet has been effectively grounded as countries work hard to slow the spread of COVID-19. As a leader in our industry, Avolon is working closely with our global customer base to support them during this period,” said Dómhnal Slattery, Avolon CEO.
Avolon also postponed the delivery of 16,737 Max to 2024 and 9 A320neo to 2027. After the changes, the lessor maintained 55 orders for the 737 Max, Boeing said. According to Avolon, the 75 canceled jets were not part of any agreement with its customers.
Avolon is controlled by the Chinese group HNA, which also owns airlines such as Hainan and Hong Kong Airlines, which were severely affected by the pandemic at its inception.
The new 737 Max cancellation puts even more pressure on Boeing, which has already lost customers while it lasted a year. Although still without a defined date, the return of the aircraft to the service is expected for mid 2020.