ATR announced that it has signed a term sheet with India’s largest airline by market share, IndiGo, for the sale of 50 ATR 72-600 aircraft, with the flexibility to reduce the number of aircraft deliveries based on certain conditions.
In a deal valued at over US$ 1.3 billion at list price, the aircraft are expected to begin operations by the end of 2017. The airline is currently preparing for an ambitious development of its regional footprint.
IndiGo’s plan coincides with the launch of the Indian Government’s Regional Connectivity Scheme called UDAN, aiming to boost economic development, employment and tourism by connecting small and remote cities.
India’s rapidly expanding domestic market represented close to 100 million passengers in 2016, and has been steadily growing by more than 20% annually. It is expected to become the world’s third largest market by 2020. Under the Regional Connectivity Scheme, 100 new airports will be created within the next two to three years, and airlines will receive financial support and other incentives to make air travel affordable.
Aditya Ghosh, President of IndiGo, said:
“In support of our Honourable Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s UDAN vision, we are embarking on a journey to build a nation-wide regional network and connect cities that have not benefitted from the growth in Indian aviation. The ATRs low operating costs will help us build a large regional air travel network with reasonable fares. These aircraft will feature modern cabin interiors, thus making the flight a comfortable experience for our passengers. The ATR’s outstanding operational versatility, along with their capabilities to land in remote airports with limited infrastructure will help us manage our operations efficiently.”
Christian Scherer, ATR’s Chief Executive Officer, declared:
“IndiGo is one of the most respected, efficient and demanding airlines in the world. Today they have selected the ATR 72-600s as the best solution to effectively implement their ambitious plans to build a nationwide regional network. Their decision further proves that our aircraft is the right tool to link communities and develop business throughout India.”