June 15, 2011 / 11:59 AM / 8 years ago

GE/Safran engine wins $1.4 bln Virgin America order

PARIS, June 15 (Reuters) - CFM International reported an aircraft engine order worth $1.4 billion at official prices from Virgin America, in a boost for the transatlantic joint-venture between General Electric (GE.N) and France’s Safran (SAF.PA).

CFM has been trailing rival Pratt & Whitney (UTX.N) in a contest to supply engines for a revamped Airbus EAD.PA narrowbody jet, the A320neo, as well as new market entrants.

But the deal to power 30 twin-engined A320neo aircraft is the second firm sale for CFM after it won a minority share of a 100-plane order by leasing firm ILFC (AIG.N) earlier this year.

Virgin America ordered the 30 A320neo aircraft in January along with 30 of the existing generation of A320 planes.

The A320neo is a more efficient version of the best-selling 150-seat A320 plane and is due to enter service in 2015.

The engine deal comes just ahead of the Paris Air Show which runs from June 20 to 26.

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