787 races towards 1,000 sales

What odds can I get on Boeing’s 787 having racked up 1,000 sales before it first flies sometime in August or September? Now that’s long odds surely.

Today Boeing lists 584 firm orders for the 787 on its website, which rises to 636 if you include the 52 ordered by lessor ILFC at the recent Paris Air Show.


But how about 1,000 orders by the time it enters service with launch customer All Nippon Airways in May 2008?

Come on any takers? Yes plenty, but at incredibly short odds. In fact most self-respecting bookmakers would have done the decent thing and closed their books on the subject.
The story was rather different in April 2004 when Japan’s All Nippon Airways signed up for 50 7E7s (as Boeing’s mid-sized widebody was still known back then).

Even the most wildly optimistic Boeing zealot would have been hard pushed to imagine how successful the programme has become even before the aircraft takes to the air.

After ANA’s launch order, for a couple of months the sales only dribbled in. Air New Zealand popped in with a couple, then leisure carriers Blue Panorma and First Choice Airways, of Italy and the UK respectively, chipped in.

The floodgates well and truly opened in 2005. By year-end Boeing was salivating over 254 firm orders and already talking about whether it could make enough 787s to meet demand.

A year later and the figure had jumped again to 448 orders with another 194 added. Already this year Boeing has booked 188 orders.

So in sales terms this widebody looks more like a narrowbody. And while we’re talking about narrowbodies let’s open the books on how fast those much-anticipated 737 and Airbus A320 replacements will sell.

One word: fast.

3 Responses to 787 races towards 1,000 sales

  1. Rob 6 July, 2007 at 5:45 pm #


    This is one statistic that, if ever reached, could finally shut up that smug old motor-mouth John Lahey once and for all.

    Hey John – need a quick change-o-subject ? How ’bout them Red-Sox, they got a chance this year ?


  2. Mark Pilling 9 July, 2007 at 9:34 am #

    And Boeing’s sales momentum continued its roll over the weekend and the 787 premiere with a hefty repeat order from Qantas and a new customer in the shape of Air Berlin.

    The order from the German hybrid low-cost/leisure carrier is an interesting one as its head Joachim Hunold has previously given Boeing a roasting for being arrogant in its sales approach.

    One suspects he is being treated a little bit more respectfully this time around, and no doubt he has got some sporty prices for those 787s.

  3. gregory schmitz 14 July, 2007 at 2:06 am #

    1000 is not out of sight by the time ANA puts the first one into service.

    We have to hear from American, United, Delta and N.W. is probably going to firm up its “many” options soon. And ones like LAN and Air Berlin keep coming in unexpectedly (no rumors, they just are there).

    BA is out, Lufthansa still has decisions to make (maybe latter).

    We are living in and seeing a once in an industry event, let alone lifetime . And I for one, am one of the Boeing fanatics who did believe it when they said 600 before first flight. .

    Yes it took a bit, but when you read about it, you see things like N.W. was one of the first in line, they just needed to negotiate a complicated deal. You can imagine with so many deals to work out, everyone had to be patient.

    And keep in mind, behind most of those orders, are at least as many options, and in may cases, 2-4x the firm order.

    If it gets through its flight trials with no major glitches, phew, sky’s literally the limit.

Leave a Reply