Etihad Airways to sell 777s and A330s to Altavair in $1bn deal

Etihad will offload 38 widebody aircraft to aviation finance company Altavair via air leasing platform Altitude Aircraft Leasing
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Etihad Airways will sell 38 widebody aircraft to aviation finance company Altavair and investment firm KKR in a deal worth $1 billion.

The acquisition is for 16 Boeing 777-300ERs and 22 Airbus A330s and will be made through KKR’s aircraft leasing platform Altitude Aircraft Leasing.

The Boeing 777-300ERs will be leased back to Etihad upon purchase, while the Airbus A330s will be delivered over the next two years and leased to other airlines as either passenger jets or as converted freighters.

Tony Douglas, Group CEO for Etihad Aviation Group, said the airline had “made great strides” in optimising its fleet structure in the last year.

Etihad said earlier it would begin to phase out its A330s jets and last year restructured its orders as part of its plan to return to profitability by 2023.

Douglas said: “This deal will ensure we stand by our strategic and financial sustainability targets by replacing aircraft with the most technologically-advanced and fuel-efficient fleet types.

“The structure of this transaction also provides us with significant flexibility, meaning we are well placed to respond to future growth requirements.”

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