Tag Archives: Airbus

Syphax Airlines suspends all operations

Syphax Airlines (Sfax, Tunisia) yesterday (July 30) announced it had suspended all operations from Tunisia.

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The company was launched in 2011 by Mohamed Frikha, CEO of TELNET Group, Syphax Airlines is a limited company.

The airline commenced operations on April 21, 2012 as previously reported.

Syphax was based at Sfax Thyna, and its network consisted of international destinations, mainly to France and Turkey.

Tunisia has seen a dramatic drop in tourism after it suffered severe blows following the Bardo National Museum attack and the Sousse attack in 2015.

Copyright Photo: Christian Volpati Collection/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-112 TS-IEF (msn 3853) wears a special livery as the “Official Airline of the Carthage Eagles”, the Tunisia national football (soccer) team.

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British Airways to bring the Airbus A380 to Vancouver

British Airways (London) has announced that from May 1, 2016 it will begin flying its Airbus A380 Super Jumbo daily between Vancouver International Airport, Canada and London (Heathrow). This marks the first A380 for the city of Vancouver and will be the only scheduled A380 service in western Canada.

All four Canadian cities that British Airways serves will now have the latest aircraft in British Airways’ fleet, with Toronto, Montreal and Calgary operating the 787 Dreamliner.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A3380-841 G-XLEC (msn 124) departs from Los Angeles.

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Virgin America produces a second quarter GAAP net profit of $65.0 million

Virgin America (San Francisco) today reported its financial results for the second quarter of 2015. Key highlights from the second quarter include:

  • Second quarter 2015 net income was $64.4 million excluding special items1, an increase of $27.5 million from the second quarter of 2014. Operating income and operating margin excluding special items were $67.1 million and 16.7 percent, respectively.
  • On a GAAP basis, net income was $65.0 million. Operating income and operating margin on a GAAP basis were $67.7 million and 16.9 percent, respectively.
  • Fully diluted earnings per share excluding special items was $1.46. On a GAAP basis, fully diluted earnings per share was $1.47.

 

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“Our latest quarterly results are an affirmation of Virgin America’s business model – specifically, they demonstrate that we can deliver a better product and guest experience while also generating strong financial returns,” said David Cush, Virgin America’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “The progress we have made on financial performance over the past two years is remarkable, and we continue to outperform domestic industry unit revenue trends. Our guests love the outstanding product and service that our teammates provide and it shows in our financial results.”

The airline continued:

Second Quarter 2015 Financial Highlights

  • Operating Revenue: Total operating revenue was $400.9 million, an increase of 0.5 percent over second quarter of 2014.
  • Revenue per Available Seat Mile (RASM): Passenger revenue per available seat mile (PRASM) increased 0.5 percent compared to the second quarter 2014, to 11.24 cents. Year-over-year PRASM growth was driven by a 0.2 point increase in load factor and a 0.3 percent increase in yield. Total RASM increased 0.6 percent year-over-year. Virgin America’s PRASM was positively impacted by a $3.2 million adjustment related to Elevate loyalty revenue, which increased PRASM by 0.9 percent.
  • Cost per Available Seat Mile (CASM): Total CASM excluding special items decreased 5.1 percent compared to the second quarter of 2014, to 10.43 cents. Decreases in fuel costs and reduced heavy maintenance activity contributed to the decline in CASM, partially offset by increases in salaries, wages and benefits. Salaries, wages and benefits costs included a $6.7 million accrual for teammate profit sharing and related payroll taxes. CASM excluding special items, fuel costs and profit sharing for the quarter increased 7.1 percent year-over-year, to 7.27 cents.
  • Fuel Expense: Virgin America realized an average economic fuel cost per gallon including taxes and the impact of hedges of $2.20, which was 29.3 percent lower year-over-year. This amount includes certain fuel expense adjustments described as special items below.
  • Special Items: Special items in the second quarter of 2015 relate to a net $0.6 million adjustment for fuel hedges that settled during the second quarter of 2015 but for which unrealized gains or losses had been previously recorded under GAAP and mark-to-market adjustments for fuel hedges that mature subsequent to June 30, 2015 which did not qualify for hedge accounting treatment.
  • Operating Income: Second quarter 2015 operating income excluding special items was $67.1 million, an increase of $20.0 million as compared to 2014. The Company’s operating margin excluding special items of 16.7 percent improved by 4.9 points year-over-year.
  • Net Income: Net income excluding special items for the second quarter increased by $27.5 million year-over-year to $64.4 million.
  • Fully Diluted EPS: Fully diluted earnings per share excluding special items was $1.46 for the second quarter of 2015. Second quarter 2015 fully diluted earnings per share was $1.47 on a GAAP basis.
  • Capacity: Available seat miles (ASMs) for the second quarter of 2015 remained flat year-over-year compared with the second quarter of 2014. Virgin America ended the quarter with 53 Airbus A320-family aircraft, unchanged from the second quarter of 2014. Subsequent to quarter end, the Company took delivery of the first of five Airbus A320 aircraft scheduled to be delivered in 2015.
  • Liquidity: Unrestricted cash was $500.5 million as of June 30, 2015. Virgin America benefited from the release of cash collateral held by its credit card processors in addition to strong operating cash flow performance to generate a net increase of $82.2 million in unrestricted cash during the quarter. The new agreement with its credit card processors also allowed the Company to terminate a $100 million letter of credit facility, resulting in ongoing annual savings of approximately $5.5 million per year.

“Virgin America made great strides in improving its balance sheet and financial position during the second quarter of 2015,” said Peter Hunt, Virgin America’s Chief Financial Officer. “We increased our unrestricted cash balance by $82 million during the quarter thanks to strong operating cash flow and the release of collateral held by our credit card partners. We also terminated a financing facility that will save us over $5 million in financing costs annually. In addition, we arranged bank debt financing for five A320 aircraft deliveries occurring later in 2015 at interest rates that will average under five percent. These accomplishments will continue to reduce Virgin America’s cost of capital and position us for future earnings growth.”

Second Half 2015 Outlook

The Company’s expectations for the second half of 2015 and full year 2016 are based on currently available information. These expectations are forward-looking, and actual results could differ materially depending on market conditions and the factors set forth under “Forward-Looking Statements” below. You should not place undue reliance upon these expectations.

The Company expects capacity, as measured by available seat miles, to increase by approximately 2.0 percent to 3.0 percent for the third quarter of 2015 as compared to the third quarter of 2014. Based on current revenue trends, the Company expects PRASM to decrease between 2.0 percent and 4.0 percent versus the third quarter of 2014. The Company expects CASM excluding fuel and profit sharing to increase between 10.5 percent and 11.5 percent versus the third quarter of 2014. CASM excluding fuel and profit sharing is increasing in the third quarter due primarily to Virgin America’s previously announced pay and benefit initiatives that were implemented earlier in the year. Third quarter CASM excluding fuel and profit sharing will also be impacted by a decrease in average stage length year over year of approximately 8.0 percent resulting from previously implemented capacity at Dallas — Love Field. In addition, the company expects to incur additional maintenance costs during the quarter related to an engine maintenance overhaul.

Based on Virgin America’s hedge portfolio and current market prices for aviation fuel products, the Company expects Virgin America’s economic fuel cost per gallon inclusive of related taxes and hedge costs to average between $1.90 and $2.00 for the third quarter of 2015. This number may change depending on fluctuations in market prices for jet fuel during the quarter.

Virgin America is scheduled to take delivery of five A320 aircraft during the second half of 2015, and expects to place four aircraft into operational service prior to year-end. The Company currently expects fourth quarter 2015 capacity to increase between 9.0 percent and 10.0 percent as compared to the fourth quarter of 2014. In addition, the company expects CASM excluding fuel and profit sharing to increase between 2.0 percent and 3.0 percent for the fourth quarter of 2015.

2016 Initial Outlook

The Company has completed its preliminary fleet and capacity plans for 2016. Virgin America currently expects to take delivery of an additional five A320 aircraft between January and June 2016. In addition, Virgin America does not expect to retire any existing aircraft from its fleet, ending 2016 with 63 aircraft in its operating fleet.

Further, the Company currently expects capacity, as measured by available seat miles, to increase between 13% and 15% for the full year 2016. The Company is also targeting for its CASM excluding fuel costs and profit sharing to decrease between 1% and 2% for the full year 2016 based on these fleet and capacity projections.

1 Please see “GAAP to Non-GAAP Reconciliations” for reconciliations of non-GAAP financial measures used in this release and the reasons management uses these measures.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Virgin America will end 2016 with 63 Airbus A320 Family aircraft. Airbus A320-214 N844VA (msn 4851) taxies to the runway at Seattle-tacoma International Airport bound for the San Francisco hub.

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Aer Lingus reports a first half loss after a second quarter profit as it moves towards acceptance of the IAG takeover

Aer Lingus (Dublin) reported a first half loss of €13.9 million ($15.2 million), an increase from a loss of €9.9 million ($10.8) in the same period a year ago.

However the flag carrier produced a profit of €34.5 million ($37.8 million) for the second quarter of this year as the takeover by Willie Walsh’s IAG nears.

The airline issued this financial report for the first half in which it discussed the upcoming IAG takeover:

Aer Lingus Group plc announces its results for the three and six month periods ended June 30, 2015:

Second Quarter 2015 highlights:

  • Operating profit (before net exceptional items) of €34.5 million; estimated adverse currency movement of €21 million
  • Strong revenue growth of 7.1% with increases in passenger, retail and cargo revenues
  • Long haul revenue increase of 24.4% with capacity up 9.7% and revenue per seat up 14.4%
  • Successful Washington route launch, frequency additions and new business cabin introduction
  • Short haul load factor improvement delivered by a volume active strategy
  • Solid short haul forward booking profile achieved, facilitating 5.8% retail growth in Q2 and increased H2 short haul capacity expansion
  • Network growth, positive forward booking profile and lower unit fuel costs will support H2 2015 performance

    Stephen Kavanagh Aer Lingus’ CEO commented:

    “I am pleased to report a profitable second quarter with Aer Lingus well positioned to deliver an improved operating performance in the key Q3 trading period and for the full year. I would like to thank my colleagues for their contribution to the delivery of this performance and for their on-going endeavours.

    Passenger, retail and cargo revenues all grew strongly in the quarter. The continued investment in our transatlantic business was rewarded with strong growth in unit revenues. The volume active strategy employed in our short haul business delivered stable unit revenue performance in an intensely competitive marketplace.

    The adverse effects of unfavourable FX movements on performance which were evident in this quarter will moderate in the second half of the year as a result of a higher proportion of US$ denominated revenues. Both short and long haul capacity are set to expand into the peak season and we are very satisfied with forward yield and load factor profiles at this time.

    Finally, I would like to reiterate the view of the independent directors of Aer Lingus that the combination with IAG will strengthen Aer Lingus and will grow our airline and contribute to growth in the tourism sector and wider Irish economy.”

Full year 2015 outlook

Aer Lingus is currently in an offer period as defined by the Irish Takeover Rules. The Group is therefore not issuing specific guidance with regard to 2015 operating profit performance while it remains in this offer period.

Update on Offer from International Consolidated Airline Group S.A (“IAG”)

On June 19, 2015 IAG issued the Offer Document containing the full terms and conditions of the recommended cash offer (the “Offer”) by AERL Holding Limited (“AERL Holding”), a wholly-owned subsidiary of IAG, for the entire issued and to be issued ordinary share capital of Aer Lingus. The Offer values each Aer Lingus share at €2.55, of which €0.05 was paid as a dividend on May 29, 2015 (“the Offer”). The Offer conditions include, amongst other things, approval from the European Commission (“EC”) under the EU Merger Regulation, acceptance of the Offer by Ryanair Limited and the Minister for Finance of Ireland, shareholders approving the connectivity resolutions and a 90% acceptance condition. Full details of the Offer conditions are set out in Appendix I of the Offer Document posted to Aer Lingus shareholders. The following conditions have been fulfilled to date:

  1. On July 14, 2015 the proposed merger received competition approval from the EC under the EU Merger Regulation, following the EC’s initial Phase I review period. IAG offered the following remedies to the EC as part of the regulatory process:
  • Five daily slot pairs to be made available to other airlines at London Gatwick for flights between the airport and Dublin or Belfast.
  • Specifically, two of the five daily frequencies must be operated between Gatwick and Dublin.
  • One daily frequency must be operated between Gatwick and Belfast.
  • The other two frequencies can be operated between Gatwick and either Dublin or Belfast.
  • Other airlines can apply for seats on Aer Lingus’ short haul network for their transfer passengers, on normal commercial terms July 2015 Aer Lingus held an Extraordinary General Meeting (“EGM”) and successfully passed the resolutions in relation to the

2. On July 16, 2015 Aer Lingus held an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) and successfully passed the resolutions in relation to the connectivity commitments and received Rule 16 approval from the independent shareholders.

3. On this date IAG also confirmed the extension of the Offer until 1 pm (Irish time) on July 30, 2015.

4. On July 17, 2015 IAG confirmed the receipt of the valid acceptance of its Offer by the Minister for Finance of Ireland. The Minister for Finance’s acceptance was a condition of the Offer. At this date, IAG also announced that on July 16, 2015, AERL Holding had received valid acceptances of the Offer for 269,902,009 Aer Lingus shares, representing 50.53 per cent of the existing issued share capital of Aer Lingus, which AERL Holding may count towards the satisfaction of the acceptance condition to the Offer.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: SM Fitzwilliams Collection/AirlinersGallery.com. Aer Lingus, under an IAG takeover, is confident it can compete against an aggressive Ryanair. Airbus A320-214 EI-EDS (msn 3755) departs from the Dublin hub.

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Air Transat to offer winter service between Toronto and Paris via Montreal

Air Transat (Montreal) has announced it fly from Toronto (Pearson) to Paris this winter thanks to the addition of new connecting flights to Montreal.

 

The airline continued:

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Air Transat will also be offering a new Montreal – Toronto route allowing passengers to leave from Montreal and board Toronto flights for London, Manchester or Glasgow as well as a new Calgary – Vancouver route allowing passengers to leave from Calgary and board a Vancouver – London flight.

The new flights between Toronto and Paris and Montreal and the United Kingdom (London , Manchester and Glasgow ) will operate from Sunday to Thursday inclusively effective in November 2015.

Connecting flights will also be offered for Malaga, Spain for passengers travelling from Toronto to Montreal effective January 2016 and for three destinations in Portugal ( Lisbon and Porto as of November 2015 and Faro as of January 2016 ) for passengers travelling from Montreal to Toronto , all destinations renowned for vacations under the sun.

Air Transat will also be offering a new Calgary – Vancouver route this winter effective December 2015 allowing passengers to leave from Calgary and board a Vancouver – London flight on Mondays.

Travellers who want to enjoy the Air Transat experience when flying domestically will also be able to take advantage of the new flights between Toronto and Montreal and Calgary and Vancouver which run during peak business travel hours.

Copyright Photo: Steve Bailey/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A330-243 C-GTSZ (msn 971) approaches the runway at Vancouver International Airport.

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Transaero Airlines to introduce its first Airbus A321

Transaero Airlines (Moscow) has taken delivery of its first Airbus A321. The company is planning to introduce the new type on routes from Moscow to Paris, Tel Aviv, Astana, Almaty and Novosibirsk.

On July 28, the company issued this statement:

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Transaero Airlines on July 28 received delivery of its first Airbus A321 as a result of a long-term leasing agreement between the airline and ICBC Leasing of China.

The delivery from Airbus’s Hamburg plant is part of Transaero’s fleet renewal program and business efficiency enhancement program. Under this program, Transaero’s fleet is being expanded with new fuel efficient aircraft with optimal passenger capacity for the current market conditions.

By the end of the year, Transaero plans to receive three more A321 aircraft.

The A321 is the first Airbus medium-range aircraft in the airline’s fleet. It is configured with two classes and can accommodate 184 passengers. The Business class cabin has eight highly comfortable seats with a seat pitch of 55 inches. The Economy class cabin has 176 ergonomic B/E Aerospace slimline seats. The seat pitch is 31 inches.

The aircraft is fitted with sharklets. Its passenger cabin is equipped with LED lighting. The seats are fitted with power and USB sockets.

The A321 was delivered in a new corporate identity, which the airline uses for all new aircraft joining its fleet.

Transaero will start operating its first A321s on the high-demand, medium-range routes, i.e. to Paris, Tel Aviv, Astana, Almaty and Novosibirsk.

Copyright Photo: Gerd Beilfuss/AirlinersGallery.com. Transaero Airlines’ first Airbus A321-211 registered as EI-VKO (msn 6678) taxies at Hamburg (Finkenwerder) before the handover.

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Hawaiian reports second quarter adjusted net income of $37.5 million

Hawaiian Holdings, Inc, (Hawaiian Airlines) (Honolulu) has reported the financial results of its second quarter:

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  • GAAP net income of $48.8 million or $0.79 per diluted share.
  • Adjusted net income, reflecting economic fuel expense and excluding loss on extinguishment of debt, of $37.5 million or $0.61 per diluted share, an increase of $15.1 million or $0.26 cents per diluted share year-over-year.
  • Adjusted pre-tax margin of 10.7% compared to 6.4% in the prior year period.
  • Unrestricted cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments of $606 million.
  • Lowered leverage ratio to 3.4x.

“We are pleased with the results for the quarter,” said Mark Dunkerley, Hawaiian Airlines president and chief executive officer. “Strong demand across our network, coupled with low fuel prices, more than compensated for the adverse impacts of the strengthening US dollar, the significant reduction in most fuel surcharges and the high levels of industry capacity growth from North America. Our financial performance for the second half of the year seems set to be a continuation of what we’ve seen so far in 2015. In this environment, the company expects to generate free cash flow, strengthen its balance sheet and improve its profit margins. As ever, the whole team has done a great job of looking after our customers, enhancing our reputation, and burnishing our brand. They have my thanks.”

Statistical data, as well as a reconciliation of the reported non-GAAP financial measures, can be found in the accompanying tables.

Liquidity and Capital Resources

As of June 30, 2015 the Company had:

  • Unrestricted cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments of $606 million.
  • Outstanding debt and capital lease obligations of approximately $947 million consisting of the following:
  1. $689 million outstanding under secured loan agreements to finance a portion of the purchase price for 11 Airbus A330-200 aircraft.
  2. $127 million outstanding under secured loan agreements to finance a portion of the purchase price for 15 Boeing 717-200 aircraft.
  3. $100 million in capital lease obligations to finance the acquisition of an Airbus A330-200, two Boeing 717-200 aircraft and aircraft-related equipment.
  4. $27 million outstanding under floating rate notes to finance the acquisition of two Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft.
  5. $4 million of outstanding convertible senior notes.

In the second quarter, the Company repurchased $4 million (principal balance) of its convertible senior notes outstanding. Repurchases to date have totaled $82 million (principal balance) or 95%, of the originally issued principal amount, thereby eliminating the need for the Company to issue 10.4 million shares when the notes may have otherwise converted to common stock.

In addition, during the second quarter the Company repurchased 0.8 million shares of its common stock for approximately $18 million under its previously announced $100 million stock repurchase program.

Second Quarter 2015 Highlights

Operational

  • Ranked #1 nationally for on-time performance for the months of March, April and May 2015.
  • Ranked as one of the top domestic airlines by Travel + Leisure for 2015.

Product and loyalty

  • The comprehensive interior retrofit of the Company’s neighbor island fleet remains on schedule for completion in the fourth quarter of 2015 with 12 of 18 Boeing 717 aircraft completed to date.

Fleet and financing

  • Added an A330-200 aircraft under lease financing and retired a Boeing 767-300 at the end of its lease.
  • Updated the fleet plan and entered into a six-year lease agreement for one A330-200 with a delivery date of summer 2016 and accelerated the planned retirement date of certain of its Boeing 767-300 aircraft.
  • Announced the purchase of three ATR 72 turbo-prop aircraft in an all-cargo configuration for expansion of its cargo service.

Schedule

  • Los Angeles to Kona, three-times-weekly, and Los Angeles to Lihu’e, four-times-weekly, summer seasonal service reintroduced in May.
  • Oakland to Kona, three-times-weekly and Oakland to Lihu’e, four-times-weekly, summer seasonal service reintroduced in May.
  • Los Angeles to Maui second daily seasonal summer service reintroduced in May.
  • Announced year round service from Los Angeles to Lihu’e, three-times-weekly, beginning in January 2016.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A330-243 N396HA (msn 1488) taxies to the runway at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA).

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