SEATTLE --- Boeing today announced that Guggenheim Aviation Partners, LLC (GAP), the U.S.-based aviation investment firm, acting on behalf of one of its investment funds, has ordered four 747-8 Freighters, with an option to order an additional two airplanes.
At list prices, the order is valued at approximately $1.12 billion. Delivery of the 747-8 Freighters will begin in 2009. These airplanes were added to the Boeing Orders and Deliveries Web site on Oct. 5, attributed to an unidentified customer.
"Guggenheim Aviation Partners recognizes the Boeing 747 freighter family as the standard for the air cargo market," said Stephen Rimmer, Executive Officer of GAP. "We have been successful in leasing our entire 747 freighter fleet -- including airplanes yet to be delivered -- to cargo operators around the world. The 747-8 Freighter has unique capabilities that complement and extend our 747 freighter leasing strategy."
"Guggenheim Aviation Partners is a recognized leader in air freight leasing. Their endorsement is a significant milestone in the customer base for our new cargo airplane," said John Feren, vice president of Sales, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. "Boeing's partnership with Guggenheim Aviation Partners now spans the entire customer and airplane manufacturer spectrum, having completed transactions for used airplanes, conversions of 747 passenger airplanes to freighters, in-production 747-400ERFs and now, a new development airplane -- the 747-8F."
Investment funds managed by GAP currently own a fleet of 30 Boeing aircraft, including a fleet of seven 747-400s that will be modified through the Boeing Converted Freighter program. In addition to those airplanes, the funds ordered six 747-400ER (Extended Range) Freighters in July 2005.
Global air cargo traffic growth is expected to average 6.1 percent over the next 20 years, according to Boeing's World Air Cargo Forecast 2006/2007. Additionally, large freighters, such as the 747-8 Freighter, will comprise an increasingly large segment of the world freighter fleet, as operators look for high efficiency with low tonne-kilometer costs.
The 747-8 Freighter improves on the current best-in-class 747-400F with 16 percent more payload capacity, due to a larger airframe that allows it to hold seven additional standard pallets while maintaining its customer-preferred nose-door-loading capability.
In addition, both the 747-8 Freighter and 747-8 Intercontinental (passenger) models provide improved fuel burn, achieved by an improved wing design and new engines -- General Electric's new GEnx engines, which deliver greater fuel efficiency, engine durability, weight reduction and lower overall operating costs than today's engines. Including today's order, 44 747-8 Freighters have been ordered by five customers since program launch in November 2005.
Boeing, Guggenheim Aviation Partners Sign for Four 747-8 Freighters