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PAL orders 2 more Airbus, revises sked for 10 planes

The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - National flag carrier Philippine Airlines Inc. (PAL) is acquiring two brand new Airbus aircraft under a revised fleet renewal program after successfully buying back the stake of diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corp. (SMC).

PAL said it has finalized an agreement with Airbus for the acquisition of two more A321 NEO bringing the airline’s outstanding orders for the single-aisle aircraft to 40.

Data from the website of Airbus showed that an A321 has an average list price of $113.7 million.

The national flag carrier also reached a mutual agreement with French aircraft maker to revise the delivery of 10 A321 to spread out its delivery stream in line with market growth.

The Tan Group earlier decided to push back by four years the complete delivery of the remaining 38 aircraft from Airbus to 2024 instead of 2020.

Immediately after buying back the shares of SMC in PAL last September, the Tan Group evaluated the fleet renewal program undertaken by SMC.

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The Tan Group through Buona Sorte and Horizon Global Investments bought back the 49-percent interest of SMC’s San Miguel Equity Investments Inc. last Sept. 15 for a total consideration of $1.3 billion.

SMC through San Miguel Equity Investments Inc. (SMEII) bought a 49-percent stake in Trustmark Holdings Corp. in April 2012 for a total consideration of $500 million. It embarked on an ambitious massive fleet renewal program involving the acquisition of 100 brand new aircraft with orders of 65 brand new Airbus aircraft worth close to $10 billion.

Trustmark owns and controls 89.78 percent of the issued and outstanding shares of PAL Holdings that owns 98.27 percent of PAL. 

PAL president and chief operating officer Jaime Bautista earlier said the airline is also looking for brand new aircraft for its long-haul operations to beef up its existing fleet of six Boeing 777-300ER and six Airbus A340-300.

 “We are in the process of preparing a long term fleet plan for PAL. What we have finalized is for domestic and regional only but for long haul, we have yet to finalize our fleet plan,” Bautista said.

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