UPDATE 4-Bombardier's Delta, China deals give it edge on Embraer

Thu Dec 6, 2012 3:22pm EST
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* Delta orders up to 70 CRJ900s for as much as $3.3 bln

* Undisclosed Chinese customer also buys 7 regional jets

* Bombardier set to steal Embraer's sales lead in segment

By Brad Haynes and Karen Jacobs

Dec 6 (Reuters) - Bombardier Inc won up to $3.6 billion in regional jet orders from Delta Air Lines and an undisclosed Chinese client on Thursday, recovering momentum in a segment that had slipped to Brazilian rival Embraer .

Delta said it would buy 40 Bombardier CRJ900 regional jets, with the option to buy an additional 30 planes, in a deal worth up to $3.29 billion. L a ter on Thursday, Bombardier said a Chinese customer had ordered seven CRJ700 jets in a $330 million deal.

Together the orders reignited prospects for Bombardier's aviation unit and dimmed hopes that Embraer, which was in the running for the Delta deal, could keep up the pace of its production next year.

Embraer shares fell as much as 7 percent in Thursday trading before paring losses to 2.7 percent, while Bombardier shares gained 1.8 percent.

Bombardier has delivered about half as many regional jets as Embraer in recent years and missed out on several major orders, especially in China where Embraer has delivered three in four commercial jets with 120 seats or less.   Continued...