As part of its fleet overhaul initiative, Delta has purchased 100 737-900ERs from Boeing. The order, valued at $8.58 billion, will allow the American carrier to gradually retire less fuel-efficient planes over a five-year period.
Delta will acquire 12 737-900ERs in 2013, with 19 being delivered steadily each year from 2014 to 2017. The 12 remaining aircraft will enter Delta’s fleet in 2018.
Delta officials praise this order as a giant step in improving sustainability and reducing fuel-related expenditures. After all, they reveal, these aircraft — which consume 15-percent to 20-percent less fuel — will offer lower unit costs than the Boeing 757 and 767s and Airbus A320s they replace.
It’s a win-win situation, Delta CEO Richard Anderson maintains. “With significant savings from increased fuel-efficiency and lower maintenance costs, these aircraft will be cash-flow positive and earnings accretive from the first year of operation,” he said in a statement.
Anderson also points to the customer service implications of this procurement. “A key component of Delta’s strategy is making prudent investments for the future while maintaining our financial and capacity discipline,” he stated. “With this next-generation Boeing aircraft, we can give our customers a superior in-flight experience while at the same time improving our shareholder returns.”
In addition to acquiring new aircraft, Delta is also investing $2 billion over a three-year period to procure new technologies and renovate its facilities.