Boeing's senior vice president for the 7E7 told a teleconference that the order from All Nippon Airways is just the start.
VP Mike Bair expects more orders soon from airlines in Asia, the Mideast, Europe and the United States.
All Nippon Airways became the launch customer for the plane with its order, which is worth $6 billion at list prices.
Bair says it validates Boeing's view of the market. He says Boeing expects to win "more than half" of the market for long-range mid-size jetliners, a market worth an estimated $400 billion.
Rockford's Hamilton-Sunstrand plant has already received a multi-million dollar contract to build some parts for this new plane and other opportunities for local products are still possible.