Bombardier Commercial Aircraft has signed a firm purchase agreement for six new Q400 aircraft with African Aero Trading on behalf of the consortium forming Air Connection Express, Transportes Aereos S.A, based in Luanda, Angola.
Based on the list price of the Q400 aircraft, the firm order is valued at approximately US$198 million, Bombardier said on 5 May.
“We congratulate Air Connection Express as it launches its domestic air travel business, and are pleased that the Q400 has been selected to support regional air travel in Africa,” said Jean-Paul Boutibou, Vice President, Sales, Middle East and Africa, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft.
“The Q400 has proven to be a key contributor to the growth of the network in the region, enhancing connectivity on routes that are not economically viable for larger aircraft. Today, more than 37 operators are flying the Q Series in Africa, and we look forward to adding Air Connection Express to the family of Q400 operators.”
The airline will operate the Q400 domestically to connect smaller communities and increase frequencies as a regional feeder airline to TAAG Angola Airlines – flag carrier of the Republic of Angola.
“We are delighted to have reached this milestone with Bombardier. With its industry-leading reliability, outstanding economics and performance capabilities, the Q400 will be instrumental in driving economic growth in Angola,” said Alcinda Pereira, Representative, Founding Committee, Air Connection Express, Transportes Aereos S.A.
“As we look at starting operations, we are confident that the nation of Angola will benefit tremendously from the Consortium. This partnership of companies has Angola’s citizen’s needs at heart, and selecting the leading turboprop in Africa will enable us to better serve communities across the country with modern passenger comfort and improved connectivity.”
This is a Public Private Partnership (PPP) that brings private and government groups together towards building a stable domestic airline operation for Angola. The members of the consortium include TAAG Angola Airlines, ENANA, Airjet, Air26, Bestfly, Diexim, Mavewa, SJL and Air Guicango. The consortium is in the process of establishing a management team and the operational structure for Air Connection Express.