Interjet fails to re-negotiate SSJ 100 lease

Interjet currently operates 22 SSJ 100s and has eight more on order Interjet currently operates 22 SSJ 100s and has eight more on order (Photo by Leonid Faerberg / transport-photo.com)

Russia’s Sukhoi Civil Aircraft (SCAC), the manufacturer of the Superjet 100, will not be able to extend its recently launched Residual Value Guarantee program onto the 22 aircraft which were delivered to Mexican carrier Interjet. Instead, the operator agreed to expand the aircraft’s maintenance and training capabilities.

Interjet, the largest operator of SSJ 100 outside Russia, asked the OEM to include its SSJ 100 fleet into the program that offers the type operators a refund in case after several years in operation the residual market value of their aircraft drops below 60% of the initial cost. The measure helps reduce leasing rates on the Russian-made aircraft.

Russia’s vice-minister for industry and trade Andrey Boginskiy announced recently that this will not be possible, RIA Novosti reports. “We told Mr Aleman [Miguel Aleman, the CEO of Interjet – ed.], and he agreed that the contract had been signed when that program was not yet in place. We cannot extend it to the previous deliveries, but we can negotiate the measure for future deliveries,” Boginskiy commented speaking at a business forum in Mexico. He did not specify whether he meant the eight aircraft that Interjet has on order, but are to be delivered until the end of the first quarter of 2017.

However, on November 16, SCAC and Interjet signed an extension to their Letter of Intent, which streamline the companies’ joint efforts in implementing two measures that will help significantly decrease Interjet’s operational expenses.

The first of these is an in-house training center for Interjet’s SSJ 100 flight crews in Toluca. The training center will be the first of its kind outside Russia apart from those facilities that belong to SuperJet International, the JV between SCAC and Italian Leonardo-Finmeccanica. The Toluca center will be fully fitted with simulators and other training equipment and will allow Interjet to save on sending their crews to Moscow or Venice for training.

The second agreed measure is an in-house maintenance center, authorized to carry out modifications on the SSJ 100. Eventually this facility called Interjet’s Center of Competence will be able to produce a number of components for the SSJ 100s the airline operates, a spokesperson for SCAC told Russian Aviation Insider.

Interjet currently operates over 650 flights weekly to almost 50 destinations on SSJ 100s.

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