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JetBlue, Bombardier resume talks on C Series



JetBlue Airways Corp. resumed talks with Bombardier Inc. about a possible order of the planemaker’s C Series aircraft, after a pause in discussions earlier this year, people familiar with the matter said.
The two sides began meeting over the jetliner in the second half of last year, but broke off negotiations about two months ago, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the matter is private.
If the New York-based discount carrier places an order, it would join Delta Air Lines Inc. and Air Canada among major North American airlines deciding to buy the jet since Bombardier won certification from Canadian regulators in December. The C Series is the planemaker’s biggest-ever jet, a step up in size from the Montreal-based company’s signature regional models.
Delta’s commitment removes a threat that Bombardier may end production of the C series because of a lack of orders, which would have meant maintenance costs for the existing aircraft would become “much more expensive” over time, said Joe DeNardi, an analyst at Stifel Nicolaus & Co.
“It’s easier for Bombardier to sell it now that they have a marquee customer to support that production line for the next several years,” he said in an interview.
Bombardier and JetBlue declined to comment.
JetBlue fell 2.6 percent to $19.41 in New York, while Bombardier rose less than 1 percent to C$1.98 in Toronto.
It isn’t clear where the C Series would fit into JetBlue’s fleet. The airline operates 60 Embraer SA E190s with 100 all-coach seats and has about 160 larger, single-aisle Airbus planes.

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