Bombardier Commercial Aircraft announced today that lessor Palma Holding Limited has signed a firm purchase agreement to acquire an additional dual-class Q400 NextGen aircraft.
Under a joint venture between Palma and Ibdar Bank BSC (“Ibdar”), the firm-ordered aircraft will be leased to RwandAir of Kigali, Rwanda.
“The dual-class-configured Q400 NextGen aircraft presents many exciting business development opportunities for the African region,” said Moulay Omar Alaoui, President, Palma Holding Ltd.
“With Ibdar, we became the first lessors worldwide for the aircraft’s dual-class configuration and having already worked together to place four aircraft with another operator in Africa, we are delighted to support RwandAir on its path towards further growth and increased profitability.
“The Q400 aircraft is highly desired by airlines as evidenced by the number of repeat orders, and this makes it an attractive asset from a lessor’s point of view,” added Mr. Alaoui.
“It is also worth noting that with these purchase and lease agreements, together with Palma, we continue to expand the use of Islamic financing in the African aviation sector,” said Basel Al-Haq-Issa, Chief Executive Officer, Ibdar Bank BSC. “Our previous cooperation, which facilitated the lease of four Q400 NextGen aircraft, was the first Islamic financing deal in the African aviation sector, and we will continue to look for opportunities to replicate and build on this success as we have now done with RwandAir.”
“Our first dual-class, 67-seat Q400 NextGen aircraft has been performing extremely well and has fully met our expectations. It has proven to be capable of performing in our environment and flexible in supporting our fleet strategy through its increased capacity – all the while nicely complementing our dual-class CRJ900 NextGen regional jets,” said John Mirenge, Chief Executive Officer, RwandAir. “We are adding another Q400 Next Gen aircraft to our fleet because we know it will be an important and consistent contributor to our bottom line.”
“Proving its high value in meeting the African regional market’s requirements, the Q400 NextGen aircraft — with its outstanding operational flexibility thanks to its jet-like speed – is a premium product for increased revenues,” said John Kassis, Regional Vice President, Sales, the Middle East and Africa, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft. “We are thrilled to be joining Palma in supporting RwandAir’s innovative growth strategy.”
RwandAir currently operates two dual-class Bombardier CRJ900 NextGen regional jets, and with the lease of the aircraft announced today, is adding another Q400 NextGen aircraft to the first one that is already in service.