SINGAPORE, Feb 12 (Reuters) - Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE), the largest aircraft leasing firm in the Middle East, has ordered 20 turboprop commercial aircraft with an option for another 20 planes from French-Italian manufacturer ATR, the company said on Wednesday.
DAE put the value of the purchase at $988 million.
“We aim to diversify our portfolio and expand into regional aircraft, to meet an increasing demand from airlines that are developing regional air connectivity,” DAE managing director Khalifa AlDaboos said at the Singapore Airshow.
The order by DAE for 20 ATR 72-600s and options for 20 additional ones will see delivery between 2015 and 2018.
DAE has lined up customers for the first 20 aircraft and will decide on the options this year, Khalifa said.
“ATRs are today operated by some 190 carriers all over the world, and this is clearly providing us with potential opportunities to place this new fleet,” he added. (Reporting by Al-Zaquan Amer Hamzah, Editing by Jeremy Laurence)