Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Bombardier Sells Eight Q400 NextGen Airliners to Ethiopian Airlines

Bombardier Aerospace announced today that Ethiopian Airlines has signed a contract to purchase eight Q400 NextGen turboprop airliners, and has taken options on four additional Q400 NextGen aircraft. Including this transaction, the Dash 8/Q-Series aircraft program has recorded firm orders for a total of 1,001 aircraft.

Based on the list price of the Q400 NextGen airliner, the value of the Ethiopian Airlines firm order contract is approximately $242 million US, and could increase to approximately $366 million US if the four options are exercised.

Ethiopian Airlines, the country's flag carrier, made its first flight between Addis Ababa and Cairo via Asmara on April 8, 1946. Today, it operates a fleet of jet and turboprop aircraft to 33 African cities and a total of 20 international points in the Middle East, Asia, Europe and North America.

Ethiopian Airlines won the Brussels Airport Marketing Award for long-haul operations in October, 2008. In the same month the airline also won the 2008 Best Airline in Africa Award from the Akwaaba Travel Market Organization and the 2008 Corporate Achievement Award in Johannesburg in August, 2008.

"The 360-knot speed, low operating costs and environmental credentials of the Q400 NextGen aircraft will enable us to maintain the high standards for which we have received numerous awards," said Girma Wake, Chief Executive Officer, Ethiopian Airlines. "The aircraft's excellent range and payload capability will allow us to deploy it on domestic routes within Ethiopia, as well as on regional routes up to 1,000 nm (1,850 km) from Addis Ababa.

"Another key reason for our selection of the Q400 airliner is its exceptional performance in terms of climb rate, single-engine ceiling and higher take-off weight, and thus greater payload, from hot and high elevation airfields," Mr. Wake added.

"Ethiopian Airlines will utilize all of the extensive qualities of the Q400 aircraft," said Gary R. Scott, President, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft. "And we welcome this award-winning airline to the growing Q400 airliner family."

The transaction announced today increases Q400/Q400 NextGen aircraft firm orders to 330 aircraft, with 210 delivered as of July 31, 2008.

The Dash 8 turboprop program was launched in 1980. With the introduction of the Noise and Vibration Suppression (NVS) system in 1996, the name was changed to the Q-Series aircraft program, reflecting the aircraft's quiet cabin amenities. The aircraft are in service with more than 100 operators around the world. In addition to their role in commercial airline service, Dash 8/Q-Series aircraft are also operating in coastal surveillance, firefighting, navigator training, medical evacuation, mixed passenger/cargo configurations, laser depth sounding of the ocean floor, resource exploration and many other special mission roles.

About Bombardier

A world-leading manufacturer of innovative transportation solutions, from commercial aircraft and business jets to rail transportation equipment, systems and services, Bombardier Inc. is a global corporation headquartered in Canada. Its revenues for the fiscal year ended Jan. 31, 2008, were $17.5 billion US, and its shares are traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (BBD). Bombardier is listed as an index component to the Dow Jones Sustainability World and North America indexes. News and information are available at www.bombardier.com.

Bombardier, Dash 8, NextGen, Q400 and Q-Series are trademarks of Bombardier Inc. or its subsidiaries.