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O'Leary in flying form as Ryanair make jumbo order with Boeing

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FIRED UP: Michael O’Leary at Dublin airport last week with the first of Ryanair’s new boeing aircraft. Photo: Mark Condren

FIRED UP: Michael O’Leary at Dublin airport last week with the first of Ryanair’s new boeing aircraft. Photo: Mark Condren

FIRED UP: Michael O’Leary at Dublin airport last week with the first of Ryanair’s new boeing aircraft. Photo: Mark Condren

Michael O'Leary was in a gung ho mood this week, proclaiming Ryanair's new €17bn order for up to 200 new Boeing aircraft a "game-changer"

O'Leary said the deal would eventually see his company save millions a year from greater efficiencies and lower fuel costs.

Ryanair are committed to buying 100 Boeing Max 200 jets, with an an option to buy 100 more.

Analyst Stephen Furlong at Davy Stockbrokers said the order should improve Ryanair's competitive advantage and see it grow its market share in Europe to about 25pc by 2024.

Noonan comes up trumps

Finance minister Michael Noonan was bumping fists after striking a deal on early repayment of Ireland's IMF bailout loans.

The move is expected to save the Irish taxpayer some €375m a year in interest payments.

That works out at savings of about €1.5bn over the five to seven year lifespan of the loans in question.

Minister Noonan said "unanimous agreement" had been reached among Eurozone finance ministers on the deal.

So it's another jolly good show from the best little country in the bailout class.

Little getting bigger

Storyful head honcho Mark Little says the social news agency will be bigger than Reuters and the Press Association within the next three years.

It's not often you hear praise for Rupert Murdoch these days, but Little was very complimentary of News Corp supremo Rupert Murdoch, saying he's found the 83-year-old Aussie "inspirational" since News Corp purchased Storyful last year.

"This guy is in his 80s and he's obsessed with change, and every time I bump into him he's always asking questions about digital change, about innovation."

Fyffes and Chiquita banana split

A MERGER between Irish banana producer Fyffes and its rival Chiquita is looking increasingly wobbly.

Brazilian joint bidders Cutrale and Safra said on Wednesday that they have entered into a confidentiality agreement with Chiquita, and plan to present a definitive takeover offer for the company as soon as possible.

In August, Chiquita rejected an offer from Cutrale and Safra valuing the business at joint $611m (€472m) in favour of sticking with an already agreed deal to merge with Fyffes.

However, earlier this week Fyffes and Chiquita delayed scheduled shareholder meetings where both companies were due to seek shareholder approval for the merger to allow Chiquita time to hold talks with Cutrale and Safra.

Shock Jocks

PRE-REFERENDUM jitters abound across the Irish Sea as this week's Scottish independence referendum looks difficult to call. Last weekend an opinion poll showed a surprising lead for the Yes campaign, sending the FTSE 100 sliding at the beginning of the week.

But momentum has swung back towards the unionists this week, partly due to announcements from two of Britain's largest banks - Lloyds and RBS - who said they would move their bases south of the border if the Scots say "Aye" on Thursday.

Sunday Indo Business