SH advises Lion Air on biggest aviation order in history

19 November 2011

International law firm Stephenson Harwood is advising Indonesian airline Lion Air on the biggest ever airline order for 230 Boeing 737 aircraft (including Boeing's new 737 MAX aircraft), valued at US$21.7 billion. The deal includes purchase option rights for another 150 aircraft, which would bring the total value of the order to US$35 billion.

The order was signed yesterday morning in Bali, overseen by US President Barak Obama, who praised Lion Air for facilitating greater Indonesian - US relations, noting that this single order would create over 100,000 jobs in the aviation industry in the US.

Commenting on the deal, Paul Ng, Stephenson Harwood's head of aviation said: "We are delighted to be assisting Lion Air on this history making order. Lion Air is one of the fastest growing airlines in the world and this order signals the continuing rise of Asian aviation."

The deal overtakes the previous aviation record set earlier this month, when Emirates placed an order for 50 X 777 Boeing aircraft worth US$18 billion.

The Stephenson Harwood team was led by Paul Ng, assisted by David Hon and Martin Green in Singapore and David Lacey in London. The sheer size of the transaction, the fact that it involved a model of new aircraft still in development stages and a very long delivery stream required the legal/commercial teams on the transaction to address difficult issues of risk allocation seldom encountered on smaller transactions.