Latin America’s Avianca reduces Airbus order by 20 planes

FILE PHOTO: An Avianca Airlines plane is seen at the Monsenor Oscar Arnulfo Romero International Airport in San Luis Talpa, El Salvador, January 17, 2018. REUTERS/Jose Cabezas

BOGOTA (Reuters) – Latin American airline Avianca (AVT_p.CN) has reached an agreement with airplane manufacturer Airbus (AIR.PA) to reduce the number of planes it was set to buy by 20, the company said on Tuesday.

The airline has been struggling amid corporate turmoil – last year United Airlines ousted its chairman and controlling shareholder, revamping leadership.

Avianca will now buy 88 A320neo planes from Airbus, instead of 108, and delay their entrance to its fleet until between 2025 and 2029, instead of between this year and 2024, it said in a statement filed to Colombia’s financial regulator.

The airline has also reached an “agreement of mutual benefit” with Boeing (BA.N) in relation to a pending order for two 787-9 planes originally meant to join its fleet in 2021, it said, without providing further details.

From 2023, Avianca will sign rental contracts with BOC Aviation to rent 12 A320neo planes for 12 years, the statement added.

Avianca did not say how much money it might save because of the changes, but chief financial officer Adrian Neuhauser said in the statement the effort had contributed to the company being in a “solid position” as it advances with its plans.

Reporting by Luis Jaime Acosta; Writing by Julia Symmes Cobb; Editing by Nick Macfie

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