Bombardier eyes new CSeries win after Air Canada deal

Thu Feb 18, 2016 6:53am EST
 
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By Tim Hepher

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Bombardier (BBDb.TO: Quote) is in talks with more potential buyers including United Airlines (UAL.N: Quote) after winning a lifeline $3.8 billion order for its struggling CSeries jet from Air Canada (AC.TO: Quote), its sales chief said on Thursday.

Visibly relieved after landing the first tentative CSeries order in 16 months, and the first from a top flag carrier since 2011, Bombardier basked in attention at the Singapore Airshow as larger rivals drifted home with a handful of orders.

Bombardier announced the 45-aircraft order in Montreal on Wednesday, sending its shares up as much as 30 percent and overshadowing plans to cut 7,000 jobs.

"The competition has been fierce but the fact is, CSeries is a reality," said Colin Bole, senior vice president for sales and asset management at Bombardier Commercial Aircraft.

"It can no longer be dismissed as an orphan aircraft (as) we have heard from our competitors. It is there, it has customers and customers will draw customers," he said in interview.

Once finalised, the deal will leave Bombardier 12 planes short of its target of 300 firm orders by the time the delayed CSeries enters service, due in the second quarter.

That goal has long appeared elusive as Bombardier met delays, technical problems and nervous buyers.

It remains in talks with United Airlines (UAL.N: Quote) after losing a recent contest there to Boeing (BA.N: Quote), Bole said.   Continued...

 
Visitors disembarks from a Bombardier C-Series aircraft displayed at the Singapore Airshow at Changi Exhibition Center February 18, 2016. REUTERS/Edgar Su