Rolls gets £560m order from All Nippon

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The Independent Online

Rolls-Royce received a huge boost yesterday when it landed a £560m order to supply Trent engines to the launch customer for Boeing's new 250-seat aircraft, the 7E7 Dreamliner.

Rolls-Royce received a huge boost yesterday when it landed a £560m order to supply Trent engines to the launch customer for Boeing's new 250-seat aircraft, the 7E7 Dreamliner.

All Nippon Airways of Japan said it had decided to power its fleet of 50 7E7s with the Trent 1000 engine rather than the rival engine offered by the US manufacturer General Electric.

The decision is a major breakthrough for Rolls and puts it in a strong position to win further engine orders on the 7E7, which will enter service with ANA in 2008. Boeing said it expects to have more than 200 orders for the aircraft by the end of this year and puts the overall market at 3,500 jets over the next 20 years.

Being selected by ANA is a particular coup for Rolls because the Japanese airline's fleet has been dominated by American engine suppliers for the past 30 years. ANA's current fleet of Boeing 767s, which will be replaced with the new 7E7, is powered by GE engines. The last sale of a Rolls engine to ANA took place in the 1970s in the early days of the RB211 programme.

"Against that background, this is a fantastic competition to win," said a spokesman at Rolls' Derby factory where the Trent is produced. "This sends an extremely strong message across the industry."

The Rolls bid may have been helped by the fact that 15 per cent of the Trent 1000 will be built in Japan by two risk-sharing partners - Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Kawasaki Heavy Industries. However, Rolls pointed out that GE also had risk-sharing partners in Japan for its 7E7 engine, which has been codenamed the GENX.

The Trent family of engines was launched in 1995 and has since taken more than half the wide-bodied aircraft market with 1,700 orders from 40 airlines. The Trent 1000 is the fifth variant of the engine - other versions are in service on the Airbus A330 and A340-600 and Boeing 777.

The Trent is also one of two engines selected to power the new Airbus super jumbo, the A380, which will make its debut in 2006.

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