The European aircraft maker Airbus announced at the Dubai air show that it had signed a memorandum of understanding for the sale of 430 airplanes to U.S. firm Indigo Partners for US$ 49.5 billion in the firm's biggest deal ever.
The order includes 273 A320neo and 157 A321neo jets that will be used by four airlines controlled by Indigo: US-based Frontier Airlines, Chile's JetSMART, Volaris of Mexico and WizzAir of Hungary.
Indigo Partners is a Phoenix-based private equity firm managed by William Franke, a pioneer of the cheap tickets and high fees airline business that has spread overseas and is growing in the United States.
Present at the announcement were Enrique Beltranena, CEO of Volaris; Barry Biffle, CEO of Frontier Airlines; Estuardo Ortiz, CEO of JetSMART; and József Váradi, CEO of Wizz Air. They confirmed their firm’s individual aircraft orders as follows: Wizz - 72 A320neo, 74 A321neo; Frontier - 100 A320neo, 34 A321neo; JetSMART - 56 A320neo, 14 A321neo; Volaris - 46 A320neo and 34 A321neo.
Airbus' previous biggest ever deal came in August 2015 when it sold 250 A320neos to Indian budget airline IndiGo, worth US$ 26 billion at list prices.
The agreement could represent more production work for Mexico, since the company already manufactures emergency and cargo doors for the A320 family at its Queretaro facility.
In fact, the aircraft manufacturer is currently under expansion at its Queretaro facility to double its production capacity. The company plans to produce around 1,600 emergency doors and 700 cargo doors for the A320 family this year.