Nigerian airline Ibom Air has signed a firm order for ten A220s at the Dubai Airshow.

The signing was made official by Mfon Udom, the chief Executive Officer of Ibom Air and Christian Scherer, Chief Commercial Officer and Head of Airbus International in the presence of the Akwa Ibom state Governor Udom Gabriel Emmanuel. The airline is owned by the government of Akwa Ibom, one of Nigeria’s 36 states.

Nigeria has the largest population in Africa and the largest GDP and offers substantial growth potential in both domestic and regional travel. The A220 will offer full range of services from very short-haul segments to intra-continental air routes.

Airline “delighted with steep growth”

Mfon Udom, CEO of Ibom said: “It gives me great pleasure to be here to announce Ibom Air’s order for 10 Airbus A220s. As an organization, we at Ibom Air are delighted with the steep growth we have achieved in just over two and a half years since we commenced operations, a growth chiefly driven by the massive embrace of our product and brand by the Nigerian domestic flying public. The addition of the A220 to our fleet will support our growth strategy and boost operational efficiency. It will also offer our passengers more space and enhanced cabin experience, as a value add for choosing us.”

Governor of Akwa Ibom state, Udom Emmanuel added: “The A220 will allow us to increase the number of annual passengers through Akwa Ibom Airport, in Uyo, thus bringing more first-time visitors and business travellers to the region. These efforts reflect our commitment to supporting local commerce and making a positive contribution to socio-economic growth in Akwa Ibom state and Nigeria.”

Ibom Air currently operates two A220s. The airline flies to Uyo, Abuja, Calabar, Enugu, Lagos, and Port Harcourt. The purchase of the new A220s will enable the airline to continue on its growth path, offering new routes across not just Nigeria, but to the west African region and the rest of the continent.

A220 provides “operational flexibility”

Christian Scherer, Airbus Chief Commercial Officer and Head of International said: “We are thrilled to add Ibom Air as a new Airbus customer. The A220 is ideally suited to Nigeria’s aviation needs, providing operational flexibility to grow the business by responding to demand for increased passenger services. Through this investment, Ibom Air is underscoring its ambition for regional and in due course, international connectivity and operational efficiency.”

The A220 is the only aircraft purpose-built for the 100-150 seat market. The aircraft has a range of up to 3,450 nm (6,390 km), delivering up to 25 per cent lower fuel burn and CO2 emissions per seat compared to previous generation aircraft, and 50 per cent lower NOx emissions than industry standards. In addition, the aircraft noise footprint is reduced by 50 per cent compared to previous generation aircraft.

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