South Africa's Comair orders 8 Boeing 737 MAXs for $830 million

JOHANNESBURG Wed Mar 19, 2014 8:24am EDT

The interior of the Boeing 737 assembly plant is pictured in Renton, Washington February 4, 2014. REUTERS/David Ryder

The interior of the Boeing 737 assembly plant is pictured in Renton, Washington February 4, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/David Ryder

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South African airline Comair Ltd (COMJ.J) said on Wednesday it has ordered eight 737 MAX 8 aircraft from Boeing (BA.N) with a list-price of $830 million, sending its shares up sharply.

The order makes Comair, which operates the kulula.com budget airline, the first African airline to order the new aircraft.

The franchise partner for British Airways (ICAG.L) said it would take delivery of the first four planes in 2019 and the remaining four over the next two years, Chief Executive Erik Venter said.

The airline, which is ordering the new planes to replace aging ones, has the option to take a further eight of the narrow body aircraft that can seat 189 as currently designed.

Comair expects to receive the last four of an earlier order for eight 737-800 craft in 2015 and 2016.

The carrier's shares were up 3.5 percent at 4.14 rand at 1203 GMT. The stock's value has increased by nearly a third so far this year.

(Reporting by Helen Nyambura-Mwaura. Editing by Jane Merriman)