in Air Transport / Features

E2 wins the Peace prize…

Posted 27 August 2019 · Add Comment

The newest Nigerian private carrier, Air Peace, is the largest airline in west Africa with 80% of market share. Now the biggest Embraer operator in the region will be the first to add an E2 to its fleet in Africa. Anuradha Deenapanray reports.

Air Peace has signed a firm order for 10 E195-E2 jets with Brazilian manufacturer Embraer.
The announcement was made at the beginning of May during Embraer’s Africa business seminar in Mauritius.
The $2.12 billion contract includes purchase rights for a further 20 E195-E2s.
“Embraer’s new E195-E2 presents us with a marvel of economic performance. It’s also great that we will be the first E2 operator on the African continent,” said Air Peace chairman and CEO, Allen Onyema. “We already have the ERJ145s in our fleet, so we understand the high standards of Embraer products. I’ve done my mathematics. I look before I leap.”
He added that Air Peace needed to serve the feeder airports and enhance connectivity, which he said, is “very poor”.
Arjan Meijer, chief commercial officer Embraer Commercial Aviation, underlined the “pioneering spirit” of Air Peace. He added that the airline has delivered successfully on its aims, and has become a fast-growing successful airline. “It’s great to now have them on board the E2 as well.”
Air Peace subsidiary, Air Peace Hopper, started operating six ERJ145s last year on domestic routes. The experience with Embraer’s products and the economic benefits of right-sizing aircraft, which is often a major cause of financial problems for African airlines, informed Onyema’s choice.
He has greater ambitions for Air Peace and is targeting long-haul routes to Europe, the Middle East, Asia and the US.
But, as Onyema told African Aerospace, national carriers face numerous constraints with taxes, lack of government support to enhance their competitiveness, and policies that are favourable to carriers from outside Africa, which thrive on its diverse market.
He added that there must be more cooperation between African countries to fully unblock their potential and take advantage of the African open sky.
By setting new standards for the future, Embraer’s Pratt & Whitney-powered E2 – “the newest, most efficient and most comfortable aircraft in this segment”, is targeting the intra-African market, which is underserved and where 97% of the flights depart with less than 150 people on board.
“The E-Jet E2 is the best single-aisle aircraft in its segment and has a lot of potential in Africa. It is fully adapted to the intra-Africa market,” said Raul Villaron, Embraer VP sales & marketing, Africa and Middle.
According to the company, the aircraft offers easy reconfiguration and modularity, has a wide body with no middle seat for optimum comfort, and cockpit commonality with E1. It not only shows structural and aerodynamic refinement but also consumes less fuel.
E2 is gaining market momentum with deliveries to Air Astana, Air Botswana, Mauritania Airlines, Binter, Jasmin Airways, Azul, Air Kiribati, Helvetic, Fuzhou and Wideroe.
After five decades, more than 200 of the Brazilian manufacturer’s aircraft are currently flying. There are more than 50 E-Jets, ERJS, and turboprop operators in 25 countries within Africa. New market opportunities are high for regional jets and Embraer wants its share.
And, while Air Peace is deploying its development strategy to tap the underserved African market, it is also surely carving its way to connect international destinations.
 

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