Arjan Meijer, CEO of Embraer’s commercial aviation division, gave a very enlightening interview to Money, from Poland. The Brazilian manufacturer is negotiating with LOT, the country’s main airline, a massive order of E2 jets to replace the 40 first-generation E-Jets currently in service.
Asked about the success of the Airbus A220, formerly Bombardier’s C Series, Meijer came up with an interesting analogy. “The Airbus A220 really has a longer range. But it’s a bit like sports cars – you can drive them faster, but that’s not the solution when you want to take your kids to school and shop every day,” said the executive.
Also according to him, the E195-E2 is capable of covering 99.6% of the routes operated by the A220, but with about 10% less fuel consumption – Arjan Meijer did not explain which Airbus variant he was referring to.
Regarding a possible long-range version of the E2, the CEO did not rule it out, however, he considers that the new generation of regional jets is profitable for flights of up to 5 hours.
Meijer revealed curious details about the negotiations for the sale of commercial aircraft, from which he sees similarities with the choice of automobiles: “The main difference is that in the automotive market, the choice is much greater,” he said.
According to the Dutchman, the most important aspect when choosing a passenger plane is the so-called NPV (Net Present Value), which is what the operator will earn with the asset during its operation.
He explained that the sales process can take anywhere from six to 18 months, although in some cases it takes even longer. “It’s like going to a [car] dealership a few times to see, touch, try on your seat, ask about something and think about it. In our case, these meetings are held at air shows and sometimes at company headquarters.”
Arjan Meijer pointed out that in the case of smaller airlines, the matter is usually stressful because it is a process that takes place every 10 or 15 years and often those who participated in the previous order no longer work for the company.
Finally, the chief executive sees a great opportunity for the E190F and E195F, passenger versions converted to cargo. For him, before the pandemic, cargo planes were disappearing from the hub connection market, due to the use of passenger aircraft holds.
Now, with e-commerce on the rise, operators need to be agile, as they need to fly closer to customers, which opens up a huge opportunity for Embraer’s P2F program.