Oops! Hint: When you are courting Boeing to stay in Washington State, it is always a good idea to use a photo of a Boeing aircraft (not Airbus)!
The Washington Aerospace Partnership through the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce took out a full-page advertisement in the Wednesday Seattle Times. “The Future of Washington” ad made a pitch to keep the new 777X in Washington State (the machinist union recently voted down the proposed Boeing contract extension). Boeing is now actively looking at other lower-cost locations. There was only one problem with the ad created by an unspecified advertising agency: the ad featured an Airbus aircraft!
Read the full story (with a photo of the ad) from the Boeing Blog of The Seattle Times: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. Note to the advertising agency: This is a Boeing 777, more specifically a 777-346 ER of Japan Airlines. Our worldwide team of photographers know quite well their aircraft and we always strive to get the best shots. We are always standing ready to help any advertising agency with the exact aircraft and the best, most dramatic shots. Contact us.
Meanwhile the issue continues. The machinists are fighting to preserve their pensions. Boeing under the 777X contract extension proposal wanted to freeze the pension benefits. Here is an opinion page article in the New York Times that presents the viewpoint of the Machinist rank and file members: CLICK HERE
Boeing knows in the new world order there is always someone ready to work for less, with less paid benefits and other cities and states (or countries) willing to welcome their lucrative and giant manufacturing program to their location with tax incentives. The cost of labor affects the final selling price. Every politician who wants to stay in office, fights for new jobs. Chicago-based Boeing is probably now factoring in the cost of moving, building new facilities and training new employees (like Airbus is doing in Mobile, Alabama) versus what it will take money-wise to get a new contract extension from the IAM. Although they are separate types of aircraft (wide body versus narrow body), the Seattle area machinists are really now competing against the Mobile area future aircraft assemblers for wages and benefits. They are also competing against future workers in Charleston in the right-to-work South Carolina should Boeing decide to expand that facility for the 777X. In reality, on a global scale, every worker today, doing the same type of work, is competing against a lower paid employee somewhere in the world. It is a global village.
There are tough decisions ahead for both sides.
Alitalia (2nd) (Rome) is likely to eliminate between 2,500 and 2,600 positions, including 1,300 are fixed-term contracts and possibly 220 pilots, 400 cabin staff and 600-700 ground workers according to this report by Reuters citing union sources familiar with the latest cost-cutting plan.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-243 ER EI-DBM (msn 32782) approaches New York (JFK) for landing.
Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi) today announced an order for 56 Boeing widebody airplanes with options and purchase rights for 26 additional airplanes at the start of the 2013 Dubai Airshow.
In addition, the airline has ordered 30 787-10s, the newest and largest member of the 787 Dreamliner family. When today’s order is combined with the carrier’s previous order for 41 787-9s, Etihad Airways becomes the world’s largest airline customer for the Dreamliner family with a total of 71 787s on order. The order includes options and purchase rights for an additional 12 787-10s.
Today’s announcement also marks the 1,000th order for the 787 Dreamliner family since its launch in 2004. The 787 has reached this milestone faster than any other twin-aisle airplane in aviation history.
Etihad’s order also includes one additional 777 Freighter for its cargo fleet, with options for two additional 777 Freighters.
According to Boeing, advanced technology including a new composite wing, all-new engines and superior aerodynamics will result in the incredible fuel efficiency promised by the 777X family.
The 777-9X, with around 400 seats, will be the largest and most efficient twin-engine commercial jet in the world with 12 percent lower fuel consumption and 10 percent lower operating costs over the competition. It will have the lowest operating cost per seat of any commercial airplane and no competitor in its market segment.
The 777-8X will be the most flexible commercial jet in the world with breakthrough economics and greater range capability than today’s 777.
The 787-10 is the third and longest member of the super-efficient 787 family. With its greater passenger and cargo capacity, high degree of commonality and its passenger-pleasing features, the 787-10 will complement the family while setting a new benchmark for fuel efficiency and operating economics. The 787-10 will be 25 percent more efficient than airplanes of its size today and more than 10 percent better than anything offered by the competition for the future.
Final assembly and flight test of the 787-10 are set to begin in 2017, with first delivery targeted for 2018.
In addition, Etihad Airways also ordered from Airbus. Etihad Airways also announced a firm order for 50 A350 XWBs, 36 A320neo aircraft and one A330-200F as part of its fleet modernization strategy. The contract was signed today at the 2013 Dubai Airshow by James Hogan, Etihad Airways CEO and Fabrice Brégier, Airbus President and CEO.
The order comprises 40 A350-900s, ten A350-1000s, one A330-200F, 26 A321neo’s and 10 A320neo’s. Etihad currently operates a fleet of 23 A320 Family aircraft, 25 A330s and 11 A340s. The new aircraft will fit seamlessly into the airline’s existing long-haul fleet delivering operational efficiencies and cost savings.
The A350 XWB (Xtra Wide-Body) is an all-new mid-size long range product line comprising three versions. The new Family, whose fuselage cross-section is optimized to accommodate Airbus’ 18-inch economy seat-width for long range passenger comfort, will also bring a 25 percent step change in efficiency compared with existing aircraft in this size category. Scheduled for entry-into-service in 2014, the A350 XWB to date has already won 764 firm orders from 39 customers worldwide.
The A320neo is offered as an option for the A320 Family and incorporates new more efficient engines and large “Sharklet” wing tip devices, which together will deliver up to 15 percent in fuel savings. At the end of October 2013, firm orders for the NEO stood at 2,487 from 44 customers, making it the fastest selling commercial airliner ever and underlining its market leadership position.
The A330-200F is the all-freight version of the best-selling A330 Family. It is the world’s most modern mid-size freighter and can carry 70 tons of payload with a range capability of up to 4,000 nm. To date, Airbus has won more than 1,280 orders for the various versions of the A330, with over 1,010 aircraft currently flying with more than 100 operators worldwide.
Images: Boeing (above) and Airbus (below).
Boeing launches the 777X today with orders from Lufthansa, Etihad Airways, Qatar Airways and Emirates
Boeing (Chicago) today formally launched the 777X program at the 2013 Dubai Airshow with a record-breaking number of customer orders and commitments for the newest member of its twin-aisle product family. Agreements for 259 airplanes from four customers across Europe and the Middle East provide a strong foundation to support development and production of the airplane.
Representing the largest product launch in commercial jetliner history by dollar value, 777X orders and commitments include Lufthansa with 34 airplanes; Etihad Airways with 25; Qatar Airways with 50 and Emirates with 150 airplanes. The combined value of the agreements is more than $95 billion at list prices.
The 777X builds on the passenger-preferred and market-leading 777, which today commands 55 percent of market share in its category in terms of backlog, and 71 percent of the in-service fleet worldwide. The 777X family includes the 777-8X and the 777-9X, both designed to respond to market needs and customer preferences.
The 777X builds on the best-in-class dispatch reliability from today’s 777, as well as offering more market coverage and revenue capability that surpasses the competition. The 777-8X competes directly with the A350-1000, while the 777-9X is in a class by itself.
Opening new growth opportunities for airlines, the 777-9X offers seating for more than 400 passengers, depending on an airline’s configuration choices. With a range of more than 8,200 nautical miles (15,185 km), the airplane will have the lowest operating cost per seat of any commercial airplane.
The second member of the family, the 777-8X, will be the most flexible jet in the world. The airplane will seat 350 passengers and offer an incredible range capability of more than 9,300 nautical miles (17,220 km). In addition, the airplane will have unmatched takeoff and payload capability compared to the competition.
The 777X introduces the latest technologies in multiple places, including the most advanced commercial engine ever – the GE9X by GE Aviation – and an all-new high-efficiency composite wing that has a longer span than today’s 777. The airplane’s folding, raked wingtip and optimized span deliver greater efficiency, significant fuel savings and complete airport gate compatibility.
Like the 787 Dreamliner which was launched as the 7E7, the 777X will be formally named at a later date. Design of the 777X is underway and suppliers will be named in the coming months. Production is set to begin in 2017, with first delivery targeted for 2020.
According to Reuters, Boeing will firm up the configuration of the aircraft in 2015 and plans to have a detailed design by 2016.
Production will begin in 2017, with the first test flight scheduled for 2019 and first delivery in 2020.
The Launch Customers:
LATAM Airlines Group (LAN Airlines and TAM Linhas Aereas) (Santiago and Sao Paulo) swung to the black in the third quarter with a net profit of $52 million versus a loss of $49 million a year ago for the same period.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Read the analysis by Reuters: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Rodrigo Cozzato/AirlinersGallery/com. LAN Cargo’s (LAN Airlines Chile) Boeing 777-F16 N778LA (msn 41518) departs from Viracopos Airport near Sao Paulo.
The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM), representing 31,000 Boeing workers in Washington State, as previously reported voted down the latest Boeing contract extension offer to build the proposed 777X in the Seattle area by a 2 to 1 margin. According to this interview and report by Reuters, IAM President R. Thomas Buffenbarger said it was up to Boeing to resubmit a new offer to the workers. The union chief voiced concern in the interview that work in the Seattle area will dwindle down after the current contract expires in 2016.
Several states are now putting together incentive packages to bring the 777X to their area. Boeing’s board had recently voted to speed up the the 777X. Boeing is likely to announce the formal launch of the new jet at Dubai Airshow with an order from Emirates.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
AMR Corporation (Dallas/Fort Worth), whose principal operating subsidiary is American Airlines, Inc. (Dallas/Fort Worth), and US Airways Group, Inc. (Phoenix) today announced that they have applied to list the common stock of the combined company on the NASDAQ Global Select Market. Upon closing of the merger and AMR’s emergence from Chapter 11, the combined company will be renamed American Airlines Group Inc. and will use the ticker symbol “AAL.” Additionally, the common stock of both US Airways Group, Inc. and AMR Corporation will be cancelled and shareholders will receive equity interests in American Airlines Group Inc. per the terms of the Merger Agreement and Plan of Reorganization.
Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. American Airlines’ Boeing 777-323 ER N721AN (msn 31546) prepares to touch down in New York (JFK).
Alitalia’s (2nd) (Rome) board of directors yesterday approved a revised business plan, promising “severe cost cuts” to make the Italian airline more profitable but did not include specifics according to this report by Reuters.
Air France-KLM Group, which owns 25 percent of the Italian carrier, voted against the plan but it did not address the long-term debt issue.
Read the full story: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Alitalia’s Boeing 777-243 ER EI-ISB (msn 32859) turns on the taxiway at Los Angeles International Airport.
Lufthansa Cargo takes delivery of its first Boeing 777F freighter, will enter service on November 19 to New York
Lufthansa Cargo (Frankfurt) finally accepted its first Boeing 777F freighter, the pictured 777-FBT D-ALFA (msn 41674) on November 8. D-ALFA arrived at the Frankfurt base the following day. The new freighter will enter revenue cargo service on November 19 with nonstop service to New York (JFK).
Copyright Photo: Lufthansa Cargo.
Video: Behind the scenes at Lufthansa Cargo (in German):
Air Canada (Montreal) today reported adjusted net income of $365 million or $1.29 per diluted share in the third quarter of 2013 compared to adjusted net income of $229 million or $0.82 per diluted share in the third quarter of 2012, an increase of 59.4 per cent. Third quarter 2013 EBITDAR amounted to $626 million compared to EBITDAR (excluding benefit plan amendments) of $551 million in the third quarter of 2012, an increase of $75 million . On a GAAP basis (which includes special items), Air Canada’s net income was $299 million or $1.05 per diluted share compared to net income of $359 million or $1.28 per diluted share in the same quarter of the previous year, during which Air Canada recorded a special operating expense reduction of $127 million in Benefit plan amendments relating to changes to the retirement age under one of its collective agreements. No comparable operating expense reduction was recorded in the third quarter of 2013.
“I am extremely pleased to report Air Canada’s best quarterly performance in the Corporation’s history, surpassing previous records for adjusted net income and EBITDAR,” said Calin Rovinescu, President and Chief Executive Officer. “Our operating leverage for the quarter was significant, as we achieved a 59.4 per cent improvement in adjusted net income based on increased total revenues of 4.6 per cent for the quarter. These results underscore the momentum that has been achieved in executing on the foundations of our transformation strategy – sustainable profitability and positioning Air Canada as a stronger national and global competitor.
“In the quarter, we announced a series of significant developments in achieving our priorities: We successfully completed the $1.4 billion refinancing of our 2010 notes, significantly lowering our cost structure, strengthening our balance sheet and improving our credit profile. We completed the transfer of all 15 Embraer 175 aircraft to Sky Regional, our Air Canada Express partner, an important step in Air Canada’s regional diversification strategy and our ongoing cost transformation program. We finished construction of a new state-of-the-art Operations Centre that is designed to significantly improve operational capabilities and efficiencies of our global network. To further develop Toronto Pearson as a truly global hub and even stronger North American gateway, we recently concluded an enhanced cooperation agreement with the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA). In addition, we implemented an expanded commercial agreement with Air China, to serve additional points in China on a codeshare basis with our Star Alliance partner.
“I am particularly pleased to see the stock market’s endorsement of the strategy that our team has developed. This was reflected in our stock price more than tripling over the past year. Moreover, our commitment as a progressive employer and investment in the well-being of our employees has also been recognized with the recent naming of Air Canada as one of Canada’s Top 100 Employers.
“Looking ahead, we will take delivery of the final three of five new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft by February 2014 , and we are actively preparing to begin integrating the first six of 37 Boeing 787 aircraft into our widebody fleet in 2014. For the summer of 2014, we announced a major European expansion as these new widebody aircraft enter Air Canada’s international fleet allowing for the transfer of current aircraft to Air Canada rougeTM in order to operate in leisure markets on a more cost competitive basis.
“Our operational performance has also shown continued improvement. On-Time Performance (OTP) for the quarter improved over 20 percentage points compared to the previous year, the third consecutive quarter of significant year-over-year gains. I would like to thank our employees for their on-going focus on taking care of our customers while operating a safe and efficient airline. Their professionalism, collaboration and dedication, combined with Air Canada’s award-winning product has once again been recognized by this year’s Ipsos Reid Business Traveller Survey, released in September, that confirmed that Canada’s frequent business travellers recognize Air Canada as their preferred airline by a growing margin – the widest margin versus our domestic competitors since 2008,” concluded Mr. Rovinescu.
Third Quarter Income Statement Highlights
Third quarter 2013 system passenger revenues were $3,177 million , an increase of $148 million or 4.9 per cent over the third quarter of 2012, on a 2.9 per cent growth in traffic and a 2.0 per cent improvement in yield. Passenger revenue per available seat mile (RASM) increased 1.8 per cent from the third quarter of 2012 on the yield growth. Air Canada reported a passenger load factor of 86.2 per cent for the third quarter of 2013, 0.1 percentage points below the third quarter 2012 record load factor. In the premium class cabin, passenger revenues increased $12 million or 2.1 per cent on yield growth of 3.8 per cent as traffic declined 1.7 per cent from the third quarter of 2012.
Operating expenses increased $160 million or 6 per cent from the third quarter of 2012. As a result of changes to the terms of the ACPA collective agreement related to retirement age, which are not subject to regulatory approval, Air Canada recorded an operating expense reduction of $127 million in Benefit plan amendments in the third quarter of 2012 related to the impact of those amendments on pension and other employee benefit liabilities. No such operating expense reduction was recorded in the third quarter of 2013.
Air Canada’s adjusted cost per available seat mile (adjusted CASM), which excludes fuel expense, the cost of ground packages at Air Canada Vacations and unusual items, decreased 3.4 per cent compared to the third quarter of 2012. The 3.4 per cent reduction in adjusted CASM was in line with the adjusted CASM decrease of 3.0 per cent to 3.5 per cent projected in Air Canada’s news release dated October 3, 2013 .
In the third quarter 2013, Air Canada recorded operating income of $416 million compared to operating income of $423 million in the same quarter in 2012. As discussed above, an operating expense reduction of $127 million was recorded in Benefit plan amendments in the third quarter of 2012 while no such operating expense reduction was recorded in the third quarter of 2013.
Financial and Capital Management Highlights
At September 30, 2013 , unrestricted liquidity (cash, short-term investments and undrawn lines of credit) improved to $2,412 million or 20 per cent of 12-month trailing revenues ( September 30, 2012 – $2,135 million or 18 per cent of 12-month trailing revenues).
Adjusted net debt amounted to $4,104 million at September 30, 2013 , a decrease of $33 million from December 31, 2012. Despite adding US$285 million of debt related to the two Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft delivered in June and August 2013 , Air Canada was able to reduce net debt by maintaining positive cash from operations.
In the third quarter of 2013, negative free cash flow of $249 million declined $96 million from the third quarter of 2012, largely due to the addition of one Boeing 777 aircraft, partly offset by an increase in cash flows from operating activities due to better operating results.
For the 12 months ended September 30, 2013 , return on invested capital (“ROIC”) was 10.8 per cent versus 7.7 per cent at December 31, 2012. Air Canada has targeted achieving an ROIC of 10 to 13 per cent by 2015.
For the fourth quarter of 2013, Air Canada expects its system ASM capacity, as measured by available seat miles (ASMs), to increase in the range of 3.0 to 4.0 per cent when compared to the fourth quarter of 2012.
Air Canada expects its full year 2013 system ASM capacity and domestic ASM capacity to increase in the range of 2.0 to 2.5 per cent when compared to the same periods in 2012 (as opposed to the increase of 1.5 to 2.5 per cent disclosed in Air Canada’s news release dated October 3, 2013 ).
For the fourth quarter of 2013, Air Canada expects adjusted CASM to decrease 2.0 to 3.0 per cent when compared to the fourth quarter of 2012.
For the full year 2013, Air Canada continues to expect adjusted CASM to decrease in the range of 1.5 to 2.0 per cent from the full year 2012, consistent with the revised outlook provided with the October 3, 2013 traffic release.
Air Canada continues to expect its full year 2014 system capacity to increase by 9.0 to 11.0 per cent when compared to the full year 2013. This projected increase in capacity, which is being deployed primarily on international markets, is consistent with the fleet plan discussed in Air Canada’s Third Quarter 2013 MD&A. The projected capacity increase is due to the addition of five high-density Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft (the first two having been delivered in June and August 2013 , respectively, and the remaining three scheduled for delivery between November 2013 and February 2014 ), the scheduled arrival in 2014 of the first six Boeing 787 aircraft, and the planned growth from Air Canada rougeTM.
Air Canada’s outlook assumes Canadian GDP growth of 1.25 to 1.75 per cent for 2013 and Canadian GDP growth of 2.0 to 3.0 per cent for 2014.
Air Canada also expects that the Canadian dollar will trade, on average, at C$1.03 per U.S. dollar for the fourth quarter of 2013 and the full year 2013 and that the price of jet fuel will average 89 cents per litre for the fourth quarter of 2013 and the full year 2013.
The following table summarizes Air Canada’s above-mentioned outlook for the fourth quarter and full year 2013 and related major assumptions:
|Fourth Quarter 2013 versus
Fourth Quarter 2012
|Full Year 2013 versus
Full Year 2012
|Available seat miles (System)||Increase 3.0% to 4.0%||Increase 2.0% to 2.5%|
|Available seat miles (Canada)||n/a||Increase 2.0% to 2.5%|
|Adjusted CASM (1)||Decrease 2.0% to 3.0%||Decrease 1.5% to 2.0%|
|(1) Excludes fuel expense, the cost of ground packages at Air Canada Vacations and unusual items|
|Major Assumptions -
Fourth Quarter 2013
|Major Assumptions -
Full Year 2013
|Canadian dollar per U.S. dollar||1.03||1.03|
|Jet fuel price – CAD cents per litre||89 cents||89 cents|
|Canadian economy||2013 Annualized Canadian GDP
growth of 1.25% to 1.75%
|Canadian GDP growth of
1.25% to 1.75%
For the full year 2013, Air Canada continues to expect:
- Depreciation, amortization and impairment expense to decrease by $115 million from the full year 2012.
- Employee benefits expense to increase by $70 million from the full year 2012.
- Aircraft maintenance expense to decrease by $40 million from the full year 2012 level, which includes a favourable maintenance return provision adjustment of $32 million in the fourth quarter of 2012.
The following table summarizes the above-mentioned projections for the full year 2013:
|Full Year 2013 versus
Full Year 2012
|Depreciation, amortization and impairment expense||Decrease $115 million|
|Employee benefits expense||Increase $70 million|
|Aircraft maintenance expense||Decrease $40 million|
The outlook provided constitutes forward-looking statements within the meaning of applicable securities laws and is based on a number of additional assumptions and subject to a number of risks. Please see section below entitled “Caution Regarding Forward-Looking Information.”
Below is a description of certain non-GAAP measures used by Air Canada to provide additional information on its financial and operating performance. Such measures are not recognized measures for financial statement presentation under Canadian GAAP and do not have standardized meanings and may not be comparable to similar measures presented by other public companies. Refer to Air Canada’s Third Quarter 2013 MD&A for reconciliation of non-GAAP financial measures.
- Adjusted net income (loss) and adjusted net income (loss) per diluted share are used by Air Canada to assess its performance without the effects of foreign exchange, net financing expense on employee benefits, mark-to-market adjustments on derivatives and other financial instruments recorded at fair value and unusual items.
- EBITDAR is commonly used in the airline industry and is used by Air Canada to assess earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortization, impairment and aircraft rent as these costs can vary significantly among airlines due to differences in the way airlines finance their aircraft and other assets.
- Adjusted CASM is used by Air Canada to assess the operating performance of its ongoing airline business without the effects of fuel expense, the cost of ground packages at Air Canada Vacations and unusual items, such as impairment charges and benefit plan amendments, as such expenses may distort the analysis of certain business trends and render comparative analyses to other airlines less meaningful.
- Free cash flow is used by Air Canada as an indicator of the financial strength and performance of its business because it shows how much cash is available for such purposes as repaying debt, meeting ongoing financial obligations and reinvesting in Air Canada.
- Adjusted net debt is a key component of the capital managed by Air Canada and provides a measure of the airline’s net indebtedness. Adjusted net debt is calculated as the sum of total long-term debt and finance lease obligations and capitalized operating leases less cash and cash equivalents and short-term investments.
- Return on invested capital is used by Air Canada to assess the efficiency with which it allocates its capital to generate returns. Return is based on Adjusted net income (loss) (as discussed in the section above), excluding interest expense and implicit interest on operating leases. Invested capital includes average long-term debt, average finance lease obligations, the value of capitalized operating leases (calculated by multiplying annualized aircraft rent expense by 7) and the market capitalization of Air Canada’s outstanding shares.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-333 ER C-FRAM (msn 35250) approaches Tokyo (Narita) for landing.
Korean Air (Seoul) and Boeing (Chicago) have finalized an order for five 747-8 Intercontinentals and six 777-300 ER (Extended Range) jetliners that was announced as a commitment during the Paris Air Show in June. In addition, Korean Air has also announced an order for one additional 787 Dreamliner. The value of the combined order is valued at $3.9 billion at current list prices.
With this order Korea’s flag carrier expands its backlog of 747-8 Intercontinentals and 777-300ERs to 10 each. The order also increases Korean Air’s 787 backlog to 11.
Korean Air is currently the only airline in the world to order both the passenger and freighter variations of the 747-8. The airline also became the first international carrier to simultaneously operate both the 747-8 and 777 Freighter.
Korean Air’s current fleet of 90 Boeing passenger airplanes consists of 737, 747 and 777 airplanes. The airline also operates an all-Boeing cargo fleet of 27 747-400, 747-8 and 777 Freighters. The airline’s Aerospace Division is also a key Boeing partner on both the 747-8 and 787 programs, supplying the distinctive raked wing-tips for each model.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Korean Air’s Boeing 777-3B5 ER HL8275 (msn 37651) arrives in Los Angeles.
Ethiopian Airlines (Addis Ababa) will take delivery of its first Boeing 777-300 ER on November 7. Boeing 777-36N ER ET-APX (msn 42101) is the first of four and is currently being painted for the handover.
The new 777-300 ER will operate on Ethiopian’s dense routes such as from Addis Ababa to Guangzhou (China), Washington (Dulles) D.C., Dubai and Luanda. The aircraft is scheduled to serve the Addis Ababa – Luanda route three times a week, as of November 10, 2013, and three times a week on the Addis Ababa – Guangzhou route starting on November 15, 2013.
In other news, Ethiopian will extend its system to Singapore on December 3, 2013 with three weekly flights. The new flights to Singapore will be operated with Boeing 767-300 aircraft with 24 seats in Ethiopian Cloud Nine Business Class and 211 seats in Economy class.
|ET626||TU/THU/SA||Addis Ababa||Singapore(via BKK)||00:40||18:15|
|ET627||TU/THU/SA||Singapore(via BKK)||Addis Ababa||22:45||06:25|
Image: Ethiopian Airlines.
Boeing (Chicago) has delivered a 777-300 ER (Extended Range) to GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS) for lease to Kenya Airways (Nairobi). The pictured 777-36N ER 5Y-KZZ (msn 41818) was handed over on October 24.
Kenya Airways’ 777-300 ER is configured with 400 seats, 28 in Premier World and 372 in Economy, and features USB ports, power sockets and an all-new in-flight entertainment system throughout the cabin. The airplane can fly up to 7,825 nautical miles (14,490 kilometers) and is equipped with GE90-115B engines, the world’s most powerful commercial jet engine.
Kenya Airways is set to take delivery of a further two 777-300 ERs, including an additional lease, as part of the carrier’s 10-year strategic plan dubbed ‘Project Mawingu.’ The Nairobi-based carrier plans to increase its fleet size from 44 airplanes to 107 by 2021 and destinations from the current 62 to 115. Currently the airline operates an all-Boeing long-haul fleet of four 777-200 ERs and six 767-300 ERs.
With this delivery, Kenya Airways is also working with Boeing to support the Alaskan Sudan Medical Project (ASMP) by carrying 10,400 lbs (4,717 kilograms) of humanitarian supplies on the 777-300 ER’s delivery flight to Kenya. ASMP will use the supplies to build medical clinics, drill water wells and construct bio-sand filters for clean water in the Jonglei region of South Sudan. The humanitarian cargo will also include water pumps and agriculture equipment to support local farmers, fulfilling the ASMP’s mission statement of saving lives through health, clean water and agriculture.
Kenya Airways operates a fleet of more than 25 Boeing airplanes including, 777s, 767s and 737s. The carrier serves more than 60 destinations across Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Europe and has nine 787 Dreamliners currently on order from Boeing.
Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-36N ER 5Y-KZZ (msn 41818) climbs beautifully from the runway at Paine Field near Everett.
Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi) according to Reuters, is expected to place a large order shortly for additional Boeing jets, including the new Boeing 777X mini-jumbo and additional 787s.
Etihad is nearing its 10th anniversary on November 12.
Etihad’s order could pre-empt a widely expected large order for 100 or more 777X from rival Emirates Airline (Dubai) when it hosts the Dubai Air Show in November.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Karl Cornil/AirlinersGallery.com. Etihad Airways is already a Boeing 777 operator for both passenger and cargo operations. Boeing 777-3FX ER A6-ETN (msn 39689) completes its final approach at London’s Heathrow Airport.
Qatar Airways (Doha), not surprisingly, given its expanding relationship with American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth), is coming to Miami. The fast-growing carrier will add the Doha-Miami nonstop route on June 1, 2014 with Boeing 777-200 LRs. The route will operate initially four days a week according to the Miami Herald. This will open a lot of Asian one stop connections via Doha’s new Hamad International Airport for South Florida passengers.
The Doha route will be the longest passenger route from MIA at 6,6667 nautical miles, making it one of the longest air routes in the world.
Qatar Airways will join the Oneworld alliance on October 30, 2013.
Read the full article: CLICK HERE
Update: Qatar Airways made the news official on Monday, October 21 with this announcement:
Qatar Airways, the national carrier for Qatar, has announced Miami (IATA code: MIA) to be its sixth destination to the U.S. beginning on June 10, 2014. The airline will offer nonstop flights from its hub in Doha four-times per week aboard a Boeing 777.
Qatar Airways currently operates to Chicago (O’Hare), Houston (Bush Intercontinental), New York (JFK), and Washington D.C. (Dulles), in the U.S. and will add Philadelphia in April 2014. The airline will operate a Boeing 777-200 LR to Miami with a two-class configuration with 42 seats in Business and 217 seats in Economy.
Qatar Airways will begin operations to and from Miami (MIA) as per below schedule effective June 10, 2014:
|Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday
QR777 Departs DOH 08:40 hrs Arrives MIA 17:20 hrs Travel time: 15:40
Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday
QR778 Departs MIA 21:15 hrs Arrives DOH 18:20 hrs +1 day Travel time: 14:20
Qatar Airways has seen rapid growth in just 16 years of operations, currently flying a modern fleet of 129 aircraft to 131 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and The Americas.
In 2013, Qatar Airways has launched ten destinations to date – Gassim (Saudi Arabia), Najaf (Iraq), Phnom Penh (Cambodia), Chicago (USA), Salalah (Oman), Basra (Iraq), Sulaymaniyah (Iraq), Chengdu (China), Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), and most recently Ta’if (Saudi Arabia).
Over the next few weeks and months, the network will grow further with Clark Manila International Airport, Philippines (October 28) and Philadelphia, USA (April 2, 2014).
Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Qatar Airways Boeing 777-2DZ LR A7-BBG (msn 36101) prepares to land at Johannesburg.
United Airlines (Chicago) has applied to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) for authority to provide daily nonstop service from the airline’s hub at San Francisco International Airport to Haneda Airport in downtown Tokyo. United applied for the Haneda Airport slot pair used by American Airlines for New York (JFK)-Haneda service, which the carrier announced on October 16, 2013, it will terminate.
United proposes to begin the new service from San Francisco in the summer of 2014, using existing aircraft in its fleet, subject to government approval.
From San Francisco, United and the United Express carriers operate more than 300 daily flights to more than 90 cities in North America, Asia, Australia and Europe. With nonstop service from San Francisco to Beijing, Hong Kong, Osaka, Seoul, Shanghai, Sydney and Tokyo Narita, and beginning next year to Taipei and Chengdu (subject to government approval), United’s San Francisco hub serves more destinations across the Pacific with more nonstop flights from the United States than any other airline, and nearly twice as many as any other airline from the U.S. West Coast. United also operates daily nonstop flights to Tokyo Narita from Chicago, Denver, Guam, Honolulu, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington.
The proposed San Francisco-Haneda flights will complement United’s daily San Francisco-Tokyo Narita service, which will continue to operate and offer alternative time-of-day departures and arrivals, as well as options for passengers who prefer to travel to Tokyo Narita or are making connections there.
Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-222 ER N222UA (msn 30553) lands at SeaTac (Seattle-Tacoma International Airport).
AMR Corporation (Dallas/Fort Worth), the parent company of American Airlines, Inc., (Dallas/Fort Worth) reported results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2013. Key highlights include:
- Net profit of $530 million, excluding reorganization and special items, a $420 million improvement year-over-year; on that basis, it is the most profitable quarter in company history
- Revenue of $6.8 billion, up 6.2 percent year-over-year; the highest quarterly revenue total in company history
- Consolidated unit costs, excluding fuel and special items, improved 5.0 percent year-over-year, marking the fourth consecutive quarter of unit cost reduction
- AMR ended the third quarter with approximately $7.7 billion in cash and short-term investments, including restricted cash, compared to a balance of approximately $5.1 billion at the end of the third quarter of 2012
- American continued its fleet renewal, taking delivery of ten fuel-efficient Airbus A319s, eight Boeing 737-800s, and one Boeing 777-300 ER in the quarter, while also placing into service four Embraer ERJ 175s operated by one of its affiliated regional carriers
- American and US Airways Group are vigorously defending the lawsuit filed by the Department of Justice seeking to enjoin their planned merger and continue to move forward with developing a merger integration plan
- American accrued $59 million in employee profit sharing in the quarter, and has accrued a total of $65 million for employee profit sharing this year. The anticipated distribution would be the first profit sharing payout in thirteen years
“We are pleased to report our highest quarterly net profit in American’s history, excluding reorganization and special items, thanks to the hard work of the entire American team,” said Tom Horton, AMR’s chairman, president and CEO. “Continued execution on our product, network and alliance strategy, combined with cost efficiencies from restructuring and fleet renewal, creates strong momentum towards our planned merger with US Airways. And we are especially pleased to set aside $59 million this quarter in expectation of making our first profit-sharing payout since 2001 to our people who have done so much to put American back on top.”
In the third quarter of 2013, GAAP net profit was $289 million, a $527 million improvement compared to the prior-year period. Excluding reorganization and special items, the third quarter 2013 net profit was $530 million. This is a $420 million improvement compared to the prior-year period. In the quarter, AMR had $241 million of reorganization and special items, which are detailed below.
AMR continued to drive profitability and significant margin expansion in the third quarter, achieving a pre-tax margin of 7.8 percent, excluding reorganization and special items, an improvement of 6.1 points over the prior-year period, and a GAAP pre-tax margin of 4.2 percent, an improvement of 7.9 points compared to the third quarter of 2012.
On a trailing twelve month basis, the third quarter marked AMR’s seventh consecutive quarter of improved pre-tax margins. This margin expansion is driven by the realization of restructuring efforts to improve the operational and financial performance of the company, and AMR expects to realize additional improvements as the company continues to implement new terms reached with certain vendors and suppliers. AMR also expects results going forward to be bolstered as it competes more effectively by better matching aircraft size with demand through the continued deployment of the new Airbus A319 narrowbodies and the new two-class large regional jets, both of which started entering into service in the third quarter.
“As we continue to deliver substantial margin expansion and record results, we are positioning the company for long-term success,” said Bella Goren, AMR’s chief financial officer. “In addition, our financing activities have significantly enhanced our liquidity, and are enabling us to pay down high-interest debt and efficiently fund our impending emergence from the restructuring process.”
In the third quarter of 2013, AMR strengthened its liquidity and reduced its effective interest rates through several key transactions. AMR completed a private offering of $1.4 billion of enhanced equipment trust certificates with a coupon of 4.95 percent. The proceeds from this offering were used to pay off in full three prior aircraft financings with coupons of 8.625 percent, 10.375 percent, and 13 percent. The third quarter also marked the closing of an $850 million term loan, secured by American’s South American slots, gates, and routes, incremental to the $1.05 billion term loan secured by the same collateral that closed in the second quarter.
For the third quarter of 2013, AMR reported record consolidated revenue of approximately $6.8 billion, up 6.2 percent versus the same period last year. Consolidated passenger revenue was approximately $6.0 billion, an increase of 6.4 percent – and the highest quarterly passenger revenue in company history. Mainline and regional passenger revenue and cargo revenue each increased year-over-year as total operating revenue in the third quarter of 2013 was approximately $399 million higher than the third quarter of 2012.
“American’s solid revenue momentum continued in the third quarter, with especially strong performance at our domestic hubs, and in the Atlantic and Caribbean regions,” said Virasb Vahidi, American’s chief commercial officer. “We’re particularly pleased with our strength across the Atlantic, reflecting the success of our joint business with British Airways, Iberia and Finnair.
Through this partnership, we offer our customers more New York-London travel options than any other alliance, with 17 daily nonstop flights from New York area airports. This is yet another example of putting the customer at the center of everything we do.”
Consolidated passenger revenue per available seat mile (unit revenue) increased 3.4 percent versus the same quarter last year, to an all-time record for any quarter of 13.79 cents per available seat mile (ASM). Mainline unit revenue at American increased 4.0 percent versus the prior-year period, reaching an all-time record for any quarter of 13.11 cents per ASM.
The company’s unit revenue performance was driven by record passenger yield, or revenue per passenger mile, of 16.36 cents per mile, a 4.0 percent year-over-year improvement, and strong mainline and consolidated load factors, or percentage of seats filled, of 85.0 percent and 84.3 percent, respectively.
For the third quarter, AMR’s consolidated operating expenses decreased $248 million, or 3.9 percent, versus the same period in 2012. Mainline and consolidated cost per available seat mile (unit cost) in the third quarter decreased 7.4 percent and 6.6 percent, respectively.
Excluding special items, AMR’s consolidated operating expenses decreased $52 million, or 0.8 percent, year-over-year.
Fuel expense in the third quarter increased $40 million year-over-year on a 2.9 percent increase in ASMs. Taking into account the impact of fuel hedging, AMR paid $3.04 per gallon for jet fuel in the third quarter of 2013 versus $3.12 per gallon in the third quarter of 2012, a 2.6 percent decrease.
Excluding fuel and special items, mainline and consolidated unit costs in the third quarter of 2013 decreased 5.4 percent and 5.0 percent year-over-year, respectively, primarily driven by the company’s restructuring efforts. This was the fourth consecutive quarter of non-fuel unit cost reduction.
In addition, AMR achieved an operating profit of $713 million and an operating margin of approximately 10.4 percent, an improvement of approximately $451 million and 6.3 points, respectively, over the prior-year period, excluding special items in both periods. On a GAAP basis, AMR realized an operating profit of $698 million and an operating margin of approximately 10.2 percent, an improvement of approximately $647 million and 9.4 points, respectively, over the prior-year period.
An unaudited summary of third quarter 2013 results, including reconciliations of non-GAAP to GAAP financial measures, is available in the tables at the back of this press release.
The company ended the third quarter with approximately $7.7 billion in cash and short-term investments, including a restricted cash balance of $935 million, compared to a balance of approximately $5.1 billion in cash and short-term investments, including a restricted cash balance of approximately $847 million, at the end of the third quarter of 2012. The increase was generated by operating activities and by financing initiatives in 2013.
Fleet Renewal and Transformation
In the third quarter, American made significant progress on its fleet renewal program, adding new, efficient and more comfortable aircraft.
- The newest member of America’s fleet – the Airbus 319 – went into service in September, flying from Dallas/Fort Worth to Charlotte, Cleveland, Memphis and Wichita. These modern and fuel-efficient aircraft represent an important milestone in the company’s journey to transform the travel experience for its customers. American took delivery of ten A319s in the third quarter.
- The company launched its first service with the 76-seat Embraer ERJ 175 operated by one of its affiliated regional carriers. This large regional aircraft in a two-class cabin configuration allows the company to better match supply and demand with the right amount of schedule frequency.
- American also took delivery of eight Boeing 737-800s and one Boeing 777-300ER.
In the fourth quarter, American expects to take delivery of its first five Airbus A321 trans-con aircraft – specially configured with fully lie-flat First and Business Class seats. These aircraft are anticipated to enter service in January 2014.
Through the third quarter, American has taken delivery of 43 out of the 59 new mainline aircraft slated for delivery in 2013, including seven Boeing 777-300 ERs.
Pending Merger with US Airways Group
- In the third quarter, American and US Airways Group continued preparing for their planned merger announced on Feb. 14, 2013.
- On Aug. 13, the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice (DOJ) and certain states filed a lawsuit to enjoin the merger.
- American and US Airways Group are vigorously defending the lawsuit. The trial is scheduled to begin Nov. 25. The company is confident that the merger would provide significant customer benefits and enhance competition in the airline industry.
- On Oct. 1, American and US Airways Group announced they reached an agreement with the Texas Attorney General to support the proposed merger of American and US Airways Group.
- American and US Airways Group continue to move forward with developing a merger integration plan designed to ensure a positive outcome for their customers, employees and stakeholders.
The merger is conditioned on the satisfactory resolution of the pending antitrust litigation with the DOJ and other customary closing conditions.
American ran a solid operation during the busy summer travel season, achieving an on-time arrival rate of 79.5 percent, its best third quarter performance since 2010. American’s improved operational results for the quarter also include a completion factor of 99.0 percent, its best since 2010.
Recent Business Highlights
American has a strong commitment to its customers, its people, and the communities it serves. Recent American highlights include:
- Launching new codeshare agreements with Bogota-based LAN Colombia and Sao Paulo-based TAM Airlines, which will add new service to key destinations and increase American’s network connectivity in the Latin American region, further strengthening American’s relationship with LATAM Airlines Group
- Strengthening its global presence to best meet customer demand by announcing that American will launch its first-ever nonstop service from Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) to Hong Kong International Airport (HKG) and Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG) next year
- Opening its Flagship Check-In for premium customers at Chicago’s O’Hare airport, making it American’s fourth airport to offer this enhanced customer experience
- Announcing plans to hire 1,500 new pilots over the next five years. The company has offered to recall all of its furloughed pilots and will begin the new recruiting later this fall. This is in addition to the hiring and training underway for 1,500 new flight attendants and the more than 1,200 Premium Services Representatives, Airport Agents and Reservations Agents who have joined the American team this year
On Sept.12, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York stated that it would enter an order confirming American’s Plan of Reorganization (the Plan). The next steps the company seeks to take are to achieve antitrust clearance and consummate the Plan and the company’s pending merger with US Airways Group.
The effective date of the Plan and American’s emergence from restructuring are expected to occur simultaneously with the closing of the merger with US Airways Group.
Reorganization and Special Items
AMR’s third quarter 2013 results include the impact of $241 million in reorganization and special items.
- Of that amount, AMR recognized a $151 million loss in reorganization items resulting from the filing of voluntary petitions for reorganization under Chapter 11 by certain of its direct and indirect U.S. subsidiaries on Nov. 29, 2011. These items primarily consist of professional fees, as well as allowed and estimated allowed claim amounts.
- In conjunction with the repayment of the existing financings, the company incurred cash charges of $19 million, included in interest expense, and a charge of $54 million, included in Miscellaneous, net, related to the premium on tender for the existing financings and to the write-off of unamortized issuance costs.
- The company’s results for the third quarter also include special charges and merger-related expenses of $15 million.
AMR estimates consolidated capacity in the fourth quarter of 2013 to be up approximately 3.5 percent versus the fourth quarter of 2012, primarily driven by the combination of an estimated 1.5 percent year-over-year increase in the average stage length per operation flown, and by new or increased capacity into South Korea, Mexico and Central and South America.
For the full year 2013, consolidated capacity is estimated to increase approximately 1.5 percent versus the prior year.
Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-223 ER N778AN (msn 29587) arrives at London (Heathrow).
American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) today announced it plans to launch its first-ever nonstop service from Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) to Hong Kong International Airport (HKG) and Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG) next year.
The new daily service between DFW and Hong Kong will be operated with a Boeing 777-300 ER, marking the first time American will deploy its flagship aircraft to Asia. The new service between DFW and Shanghai will be operated with a 777-200 aircraft. Pending regulatory approval, customers can travel on these new routes beginning summer 2014.
Both routes will be operated as part of American’s joint business agreement with fellow oneworld®alliance member Japan Airlines. The service to Hong Kong will add a new destination to American’s international network, and the service to Shanghai complements American’s existing service from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD). Through oneworld member airlines and their affiliates, American’s customers will have access to more than 145 destinations within Asia. Also, through American’s extensive network out of Dallas/Fort Worth, customers traveling from Shanghai and Hong Kong will now have access to nearly 200 destinations throughout North, Central and South America.
In addition to welcoming the 777-300 ER to Asia with the launch of service to Hong Kong, American will take delivery of and deploy additional 777-300 ER aircraft to key international markets in 2014, including routes from American’s hub in Miami for the first time. American will begin operating the 777-300 ER on one of its two daily flights from Miami to London Heathrow (LHR) in January, and one of its four daily flights from Miami to Sao Paulo (GRU) in November 2014. American will also operate an additional 777-300 ER between New York JFK and London Heathrow in March. By the end of 2014, American will have 16 of the 20 777-300 ER aircraft it has on order deployed throughout its network.
With the introduction of an additional 777-300 ER between JFK and London Heathrow, customers will have the opportunity to travel in fully lie-flat First Class or Business Class seats on all 12 frequencies American operates together with British Airways between the two airports, providing more fully lie-flat seats than any other airline partnership in the market.
Together, American and British Airways provide customers in the competitive New York to London travel market more service than any other airline partnership, with 17 daily nonstop flights from New York-area airports to London-area airports. In addition to the combined 12 daily trips between JFK and London Heathrow, British Airways also offers direct access from Newark to London Heathrow and the only service by any carrier between JFK and London City (LCY), giving business travelers more convenient access to the financial district in the heart of London.
Copyright Photo: Karl Cornil/AirlinersGallery.com. American’s new Boeing 777-323 ER N722AN (msn 31547) arrives in London at Heathrow Airport.
Air France-KLM Group (Air France and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines) (Paris and Amsterdam) with 25 percent of the stock is the key to Alitalia’s (2nd) (Rome) survival. According to this report by Reuters quoting internal sources, the group has stated privately the Alitalia rescue plan and capital infusion “fell short of its requirements, particularly in terms of debt restructuring.”
However, the source added that Alitalia was “of strategic interest” to Air France-KLM.
Meanwhile Willie Walsh of the International Airline Group (British Airways, Iberia and Vueling Airlines) has spoken out against the state aid for Alitalia and has called on the European Commission to stop the Italian government’s efforts to prop-up the failing flag carrier.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Alitalia’s Boeing 777-243 ER I-DISU (msn 32858) climbs from the runway at Tokyo (Narita).
Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi) has announced its plans to acquire the five Boeing 777-200 LRs (Longer Range) from Air India (Mumbai). The airline issued this statement:
The two carriers signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) in Mumbai earlier this week paving the way for the deal.
The 777-200 LRs will be used on the airline’s new route between Abu Dhabi and Los Angeles, which starts on June 1, 2014.
Etihad Airways currently flies to New York (JFK), Chicago (O’Hare), Washington (Dulles), DC and Toronto (Pearson) in North America, and to São Paulo in Brazil, and has stated its ambition to add new services to both continents.
Subject to approvals, the aircraft will be delivered to Etihad Airways from the beginning of 2014 and each will be re-fitted in a three class cabin configuration consistent with similar aircraft in the Etihad Airways fleet. It is expected the first aircraft will enter service in April 2014.
The purchase comes as Etihad Airways finalizes details on a new fleet order which will meet its organic growth and expansion requirements to 2025 in line with its rolling network plan.
The Boeing 777-200 LR, of which less than 60 were manufactured, has a design range of 17,370 km, allowing it to connect almost any city in the world from Etihad Airways’ hub at Abu Dhabi International Airport.
The five Air India 777-200 LR aircraft, which Etihad Airways is purchasing, are on average, six years old, helping the airline to maintain its overall position of having one of the most modern fleets in the industry.
Etihad Airways’ current fleet will reach 87 aircraft by year end, with 14 new deliveries from aircraft manufacturers during 2013.
In other news, Etihad has announced it will increase its share in Virgin Australia Holdings to 19.9 percent. At 19.9 percent, Etihad Airways has reached the threshold approved by Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board in June 2013.
Etihad Airways and Virgin Australia Airlines (Brisbane) signed a 10-year strategic partnership agreement in August 2010 that includes code-sharing on flights, joint sales and marketing activities, and reciprocal earn-and-burn on their respective frequent flyer programs.
For more information, please see: CLICK HERE
The announcement follows the signing of a codeshare agreement between the two airlines. Subject to regulatory approvals, airBaltic will operate the new four weekly return flights using a 116 seat Airbus A319 aircraft.
With seating capacity for 14 Business class and 102 Economy class passengers, the flights will operate on a split schedule, ensuring optimal connectivity over each airline’s respective hubs in Abu Dhabi and Riga.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Air India’s Boeing 777-237 LR VT-ALD (msn 36303) prepares to touch down at London’s Heathrow Airport.
Cathay Pacific Airways (Hong Kong) today announced that it will add a fourth daily direct flight from Los Angeles to Hong Kong on June 1, 2014 and three additional direct flights from Chicago (O’Hare) to Hong Kong on August 2, 2014, bringing the number of flights from the Windy City to 10 per week (subject to government approval).
These additional North American flights come on top of Cathay Pacific’s recent announcement that it will launch a daily direct service from Newark to Hong Kong on March 1, 2014. This will complement the airline’s current four-times-daily service from John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York. Cathay Pacific also operates two daily flights from San Francisco.
The fourth Los Angeles frequency will be operated by Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft, with a consistent product offering of First, Business, Premium Economy and Economy Class seats and Cathay Pacific’s award-winning cabin services. Also operated by Boeing 777-300 0ER aircraft, all Chicago flights offer Business Class, Premium Economy Class and Economy Class products.
Details of the new flights are included in the schedule below (all times local):
LOS ANGELES (LAX) (June 2014, subject to government approval)
|Flight no||From||To||Departure/Arrival||Days of operation|
* Newly added flights. To commence on June 1, 2014.
CHICAGO (ORD) (August 2014, subject to government approval)
|Flight no||From||To||Departure/Arrival||Days of operation|
|CX801*||ORD||HKG||0115/0550+1||Wed, Fri, Sun|
|CX802*||HKG||ORD||1825/2020||Tue, Thu, Sat|
* Newly added flights. To commence on August 2, 2014.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-367 ER B-KPL (msn 36161) in the Oneworld livery arrives at Los Angeles International Airport.
Air Canada (Montreal) is undertaking a major expansion of international services to Europe from Toronto (Pearson), Montreal (Trudeau), Vancouver and Calgary . The airline today announced highlights of its Summer 2014 Europe schedule, which includes the introduction of year-round nonstop service from Toronto (Pearson) to Milan (Malpensa), Italy with up to five weekly flights, offering the only nonstop service between Canada and Milan .
In addition, Air Canada will increase its year-round Toronto (Pearson) – Istanbul nonstop service to daily flights from three times weekly. The airline will expand the availability of its new international Premium Economy cabin with its introduction on Vancouver-London Heathrow flights year-round, as well as Montreal-London Heathrow flights during the peak summer travel season. Air Canada will also deploy larger aircraft from its international wide body fleet on flights from Calgary to London Heathrow and Frankfurt , as well as from Montreal to Brussels and Geneva in order to meet travel and cargo demand during the peak summer season.
As part of the Summer 2014 schedule, Air Canada’s leisure carrier subsidiary, Air Canada rouge (Toronto-Pearson), will launch seasonal nonstop flights between Toronto (Pearson) – Lisbon , Toronto (Pearson) – Manchester , Montreal (Trudeau) – Barcelona and Montreal (Trudeau) -Nice. The new routes supplement the leisure carrier’s other popular vacation destinations, including previously announced Toronto (Pearson) – Dublin year-round service.
As new Boeing 777-300 ER and 787 aircraft enter the Air Canada mainline fleet, Air Canada will continue growing Air Canada rouge to reach a total of up to 50 aircraft, as demand warrants. The growth of its leisure carrier, in tandem with the mainline fleet renewal and international network expansion, is a key element of Air Canada’s overall strategy for sustainable, profitable growth, both at the mainline and leisure carrier.
Air Canada will have taken delivery of five new Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft for the mainline fleet between June 2013 and February 2014 , and the first three of 37 Boeing 787 aircraft by the summer of 2014. Air Canada is scheduled to take delivery of six 787-8 aircraft in 2014 and the remaining 31 787-8 and -9 aircraft between 2015 and 2019.
Highlights of the Air Canada mainline Summer 2014 flight schedule:
Toronto – Milan
- New year-round nonstop service starting on June 18, 2014 with up to five flights per week. Boeing 767-300 ER service featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins.
|Flight #||Depart Toronto
|Flight #||Depart Milan
Toronto – Istanbul
- Year-round nonstop service increases from three times weekly to daily flights beginning June 2014 , subject to government approval. Boeing 767-300 ER service featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins.
Toronto – Rome
- Aircraft upgauged from Boeing 767-300 ER to Airbus A330-300 service featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins, from May 1 – October 25, 2014 .
- Aircraft upgauged from Airbus A330-300 to Boeing 777-300 ER service featuring new international Premium Economy cabin, in addition to Executive First and expanded Economy cabins, from June 15 – September 30, 2014 .
- Aircraft upgauged from Boeing 767-300 ER to Airbus A330-300 service featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins, from March 29 – October 25, 2014 .
- Aircraft upgauged from Boeing 767-300 ER to Airbus A330-300 service year-round featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins.
- Addition of a second nonstop flight five times weekly from May 16 – October 12, 2014. The Air Canada codeshare flight will be operated by Star Alliance partner, Lufthansa, and will complement Air Canada’s daily Airbus A330-300 year-round nonstop service,
- Aircraft upgauged from Airbus A330-300 to Boeing 777-300 ER service featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins, from June 1 – September 30, 2014 .
Calgary – Frankfurt
- Aircraft upgauged from Airbus A330-300 to Boeing 777-300 ER service featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins, from March 29 – October 25, 2014 .
- Effective March 1, 2014 , upgauged to Boeing 777-300 ER service year-round featuring new international Premium Economy cabin, in addition to Executive First and expanded Economy cabins.
Highlights of the Air Canada rouge Summer 2014 flight schedule:
Toronto – Lisbon
- New three times weekly service from June 21 to September 21, 2014 , subject to government approval. Departing Toronto on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday, and from Lisbon on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.
Toronto – Manchester
- New five times weekly service from June 26 to September 13 . 2014. Departing Toronto on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday, and from Manchester on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.
- New three times weekly service from June 5 to October13, 2014, subject to government approval. Departing Montréal on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday, and from Nice on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
- New twice weekly service from June 4 to October 11, 2014 , subject to government approval. Departing Montréal on Wednesday and Friday, and from Barcelona on Thursday and Saturday.
Toronto – Athens
- Seasonal nonstop service increases from four to five weekly flights beginning June 2014 .
Toronto – Edinburgh
- Seasonal nonstop service increases from three to five weekly flights beginning July 2014 .
In addition, three popular holiday travel markets currently served by Air Canada’s mainline carrier on a seasonal basis will be converted to Air Canada rouge service beginning summer 2014:
Toronto – Barcelona
- Up to five times weekly service from May 8 to October 19, 2014 , subject to government approval. Departing Toronto on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, and from Barcelona on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday.
Toronto – Dublin
- Year-round service beginning on May 1, 2014 .
- Up to daily service from May 23 to October 19, 2014 .
For the summer 2014 season, Air Canada rouge will continue to operate Toronto – Venice , Toronto – Edinburgh and Toronto / Montreal – Athens after their successful inaugural season in 2013.
All Air Canada rouge flights to Europe are operated with Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft featuring a two-cabin configuration with three customer comfort options including rouge, rouge Plus with preferred seating with additional legroom, and, beginning in winter 2013, Premium rouge offering both additional room and enhanced service. By the Summer 2014 season, the Air Canada rouge wide body fleet will consist of eight Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft.
Copyright Photo: Christian Volpati/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-333 ER C-FIUR (msn 35242) taxies at Paris (CDG).
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) will extend the Amsterdam-Buenos Aires route to Santiago, Chile starting on February 2, 2014. The airline issued this statement:
From February 2, 2014, flights will be operated with a Boeing 777-300 (KL 701 and KL 702), with a stop in between in Buenos Aires three times a week on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday from Amsterdam and on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from Santiago.
To suit its clients’ needs, KLM offers 3 classes on board:
- 35 seats in World Business Class for 777-300,
- 350 seats in Economy Class and
- 40 seats in the Economy Comfort Zone that offers 10 cm extra room for passenger’s legs, twice the lean back of their seats and priority disembarking.
KLM weekly schedules as per February 2, 2014 are:
Copyright Photo: Karl Cornil/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-306 ER PH-BVD (msn 35979) painted in the SkyTeam alliance livery arrives back at the AMS hub.
Alitalia (2nd) (Rome) on April 2, 2014 will launch a new twice-weekly route linking Venice with Tokyo (Narita). The new route will be operated with Boeing 777-200 ERs according to Airline Route.
In other news, Italian transport minister Maurizio Lupi expects Air France-KLM to strongly reaffirm the value of Alitalia and strengthen its role according to a report by Reuters. AF-KL own 25 percent of AZ and will soon announce its intention with the Italian flag carrier.
read the full report: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Stephen Tornblom/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-243 ER I-DISE (msn 32856) departs from the runway at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York.
British Airways‘ (London) and IAG’s CEO Willie Walsh stated in an article published by Travel Weekly, has warned “a number” of European carriers are poised to fail this winter season.
Read the full article: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. Wearing a Panda face for the launch of the new route to Chengdu, China, Boeing 777-236 G-YMMH (msn 30309) arrives at the London (Heathrow) hub.
British Airways (London) as planned, will launch its new thrice-weekly London (Heathrow)-Chengdu, China route on September 22. BA has painted the pictured Boeing 777-236 ER G-YMMH (msn 30309) as a smiling panda. Chengdu is the home of the giant panda.
BA is also adding the lucky (in China) “8” in the flight numbers. Flight BA 89 will depart London Heathrow on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays at 1530, arriving into Chengdu at 0855 the following day. The return flight BA 88 will depart Chengdu on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 1055, arriving at Heathrow Airport at 1500.
Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. G-YMMH is pictured at LHR with the new panda markings.
Virgin Australia Airlines (Brisbane) has officially launched its new wireless in-flight entertainment system, representing a new era in the way travelers experience entertainment in the sky according to the airline.
The entertainment platform is the first of its kind in the Asia Pacific region, giving customers the ability to stream content to their own devices, including smartphones, laptops and tablets, through in-built wireless technology on board.
Following a successful trial earlier this year, Virgin Australia is now extending the wireless innovation across its domestic and short-haul international network. Thirty-seven aircraft are now fitted out with the new technology, including aircraft operating on routes to New Zealand and the Pacific Islands, which went live today.
The roll-out across Virgin Australia’s Boeing 737-800 and Embraer ERJ 190 fleet will be complete before the end of the year.
Since the trial started in August 2012, the App has been downloaded close to 200,000 times.
The wireless in-flight entertainment system supports Wi-Fi-enabled Apple iOS devices (iPad®; iPhone®; iPod touch®), Android devices (phone or tablet) and Windows laptops. To access the system, download the free “In-flight Entertainment by Virgin Australia” App to your phone or tablet, or have the latest version of Microsoft Silverlight downloaded on your laptop.
Copyright Photo: Roy Lock/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-3ZG ER VH-VOZ (msn 35302) taxies to the gate at Los Angeles International Airport.
Emirates (Dubai) has announced a new trans-Atlantic link with the start of flights to Boston from March 10, 2014.
This will be the airline’s 8th route into the United States, 9th into North America and 12th into all of the Americas.
The flight will be operated by a GE-90 engine-powered Boeing 777-200 LR and brings the winner of the Skytrax ‘World’s Best Airline’ 2013 award into Boston Logan International Airport on a daily basis.
From March 10, 2014, flight EK 237 will depart Dubai at 0945 and arrive in Boston at 1515. The return flight, EK 238, will take off from Boston at 2255 and land in Dubai at 1910 the next day. As part of an agreement with JetBlue Airways (New York), Emirates and JetBlue passengers are able to travel on each other’s flights and earn reciprocal miles.
Emirates started flights to America in 2004, beginning with New York. The airline’s current seven U.S gateways form part of a 134-destination network, served by a fleet of more than 200 modern aircraft, including the airline’s flagship Airbus A380. Emirates’ much-lauded hub in Dubai is equipped with the world’s first purpose-built A380 concourse, housing the largest First and Business Class lounges in the industry.
Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-21H LR (Longer Range) A6-EWA (msn 35572) touches down at Stockholm (Arlanda), a recent new destination for the fast-growing carrier.
EVA Air (Taipei) has introduced its popular Hello Kitty jets to US travelers. EVA Chairman and airline Captain K.W. Chang piloted the first long-range edition of the aircraft painted with pop icon Hello Kitty and other Sanrio friends, from Taipei, Taiwan, on its first flight to Los Angeles yesterday (September 18). The Boeing 777-300 ER Hello Kitty Hand-in-Hand jet will be used on three of EVA’s 17 regular weekly flights from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Taoyuan International Airport (TPE) in Taipei.
EVA Chairman KW Chang initiated Hello Kitty jets to make flying fun and passengers love them. The new EVA Hello Kitty Hand-in-Hand jet marks the first time Hello Kitty is featured on an aircraft amongst her Sanrio friends. The bright display of 19 Sanrio characters are shown hand-in hand, in different shapes and sizes, on both sides of the fuselage.
The Hello Kitty jet experience begins at airport check-in with Hello Kitty boarding passes and baggage stickers. Onboard, flight attendants wear pink aprons with Hello Kitty designs and passengers use more than 100 in-flight service items including headrest covers, pillows, tissue, hand cream, liquid hand soap, napkins, paper cups, utensils, snacks and meals. EVA Air and Sanrio have developed new inflight service item designs for the Hello Kitty Hand-in-Hand jet, including a selection of limited-edition Hello Kitty duty-free products that fans can buy inflight.
In addition to the Hello Kitty Hand-in-Hand jet, EVA Air currently operates five shorter-range Hello Kitty aircraft in Asia – with regional flights between Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, Mainland China and Guam. A member of Star Alliance, EVA offers more flights from Los Angeles, New York, Seattle, San Francisco, Toronto and Vancouver to Taipei.
Copyright Photo: Pete Morejon. EVA Air’s newly painted Boeing 777-35E ER B-16703 (msn 32643) “Hello Kitty – Sanrio Family” arrives at Los Angeles International Airport yesterday (September 18) for the first time in the new special livery.
Lufthansa (Frankfurt) as expected, placed orders for 34 Boeing 777-9Xs and 25 Airbus A350-900s. The group issued issued this statement:
Following a recommendation by the Deutsche Lufthansa AG Executive Board headed by Dr Christoph Franz, the Supervisory Board approved the purchase of 59 ultra-modern aircraft for the Group at its meeting. 34 Boeing 777-9Xs (above) and 25 Airbus A350-900s (below) will be added to the Lufthansa Group’s wide-body fleet. The first of these new aircraft will be delivered as early as 2016. Older Boeing 747-400s and Airbus A340-300s will be phased out by 2025. The new airplanes will primarily serve to replace existing aircraft at Lufthansa.
The investment amount for the Lufthansa Group’s latest order totals EUR 14 billion at list prices and is the largest single private-sector investment in the history of German industry. “This investment will safeguard about 13,000 jobs at Lufthansa alone as well as thousands of jobs at our partners in aviation and other suppliers”, said Christoph Franz, Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO of the Lufthansa Group, explaining the macroeconomic significance of the investment at a press conference in Frankfurt.
This investment in new technology, efficiency and customer comfort is a continuation of the ongoing fleet modernization that is taking place at the Group’s airlines. Lufthansa operates a wide-body fleet of around 107 aircraft, among them ten ultra-modern Airbus A380s and nine Boeing 747-8s as well as the Airbus A330-300 (18 aircraft). The fleet also includes Airbus A340s (48) and Boeing 747-400s (22). In addition to these, the Group subsidiary Swiss has 31 wide-body airplanes, while Austrian Airlines’ wide-body fleet consists of 12 aircraft.
The aim is to reduce the number of different models and fleet complexity in the Passenger Airline Group segment and also replace existing aircraft with state-of-the-art airplanes. In March, the Group approved the purchase of around 100 short and medium-haul aircraft. This order included six new Boeing 777-300 ERs for Swiss, which are also intended to replace older Airbus A340-300s at the airline.
The new aircraft will be operated by ultra-modern, powerful, low-noise engines – the Airbus A350 by the Rolls-Royce ‘Trent XWB 84′ engine and the Boeing 777-9X by General Electric’s ‘GE-9X’ model. The noise footprint of the new models will be at least 30 per cent lower than today’s aircraft.
FedEx Corporation (FedEx Express) (Memphis) reported earnings of $1.53 per diluted share for the first quarter ended August 31, compared to $1.45 per share last year.
“Growth in overall demand for our broad global portfolio of solutions drove our improved first quarter results,” said Frederick W. Smith, FedEx Corp. chairman, president and chief executive officer. “FedEx Express remains focused on reducing costs while facing challenging global economic conditions. Meanwhile, FedEx Ground continues to generate strong profitability on growing customer demand for its services.”
First Quarter Results
FedEx Corp. reported the following consolidated results for the first quarter:
• Revenue of $11.0 billion, up 2% from $10.8 billion the previous year
• Operating income of $795 million, up 7% from $742 million last year
• Operating margin of 7.2%, up from 6.9% the previous year
• Net income of $489 million, up 7% from last year’s $459 million
Revenue and earnings increased during the quarter, driven by solid performance at each of the company’s transportation segments. Results include significant headwinds from the net year-over-year impact from the timing lag that exists between when fuel prices change and indexed fuel surcharges automatically adjust, as well as one fewer operating day.
FedEx reaffirmed its forecast of full-year earnings per share growth of 7% to 13% from last year’s adjusted results. This outlook assumes the market outlook for fuel prices, U.S. GDP growth of 2.1% and world GDP growth of 2.6%. The capital spending forecast for fiscal 2014 remains $4 billion.
“We remain confident in our full year earnings outlook despite tepid global economic growth,” said Alan B. Graf, Jr., FedEx Corp. executive vice president and chief financial officer. “FedEx Express continued to execute on its profit improvement initiatives during our first quarter. We remain focused and are committed to FedEx Express achieving its $1.6 billion operating profit improvement target by the end of fiscal 2016.”
2014 Rate Increases
FedEx Express will increase shipping rates by an average of 3.9% for U.S. domestic, U.S. export and U.S. import services effective January 6, 2014. The FedEx Ground and FedEx SmartPost pricing changes for 2014 will be announced later this year. FedEx Freight implemented a 4.5% general rate increase on July 1, 2013.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-FS2 N852FD (msn 37723) approaches Anchorage International Airport for landing.
Lufthansa (Frankfurt) according to this report by Reuters, is close to announcing a new order for the proposed 406-seat Boeing 777-9X, which Boeing intends to formally launch this year. Lufthansa would be a launch customer like it was with the Boeing 747-800 Intercontinental.
The 777-9X will have new engines and wings and is expected to start flying passengers around the end of this decade.
Lufthansa, which is already a large Airbus operator, is also expected to order between 20 and 25 of the new 314-seat Airbus A350-900. The A350 will enter service in the second half of 2014.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Lufthansa’s transfer of Austrian Airlines employees to cheaper Tyrolean Airways deemed illegal by a Vienna court
Lufthansa Group (Frankfurt) in 2012 orchestrated the transfer of around 2,000 staff members of its Austrian Airlines (Vienna) subsidiary to the cheaper Tyrolean Airways (Innsbruck) subsidiary to reduce overall costs. A Vienna court ruled yesterday (September 2) that the move was illegal and the employees were still employed by Austrian Airlines.
Austrian Airlines stated it would appeal the verdict of the Vienna Labor and Social Affairs Court. The transfer was the heart of the loss-making airline’s restructuring plan and its attempt to return to profitability along with the Lufthansa Group.
Currently Tyrolean Airways is operating all Austrian Airlines-branded aircraft (except one Boeing 777) as Austrian Airlines flights. The one Triple Seven is keeping the Austrian Airlines AOC alive.
Read the full report from Euronews: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Austrian Airlines-branded Boeing 777-2Z9 ER OE-LPA (msn 28698) pictured departing from Tokyo (Narita) is actually being operated Tyrolean Airways-employed crews on the Tyrolean AOC until the Vienna court deemed the crews to be considered Austrian Airlines employees again! What will now happen to the Tyrolean crews who were operating alongside Austrian crews?
Qatar Airways (Doha) has officially launched the start of its three year partnership with FC Barcelona at an event held at Camp Nou.
The airline’s partnership with FCB took effect from July 1 this year.
In attendance were leading representatives of both organizations, the CEO of Qatar Airways, Akbar Al-Baker, the President of FC Barcelona, Sandro Rosell and Vice President of FC Barcelona Economic and Strategy Area, Javier Faus.
Since its beginnings, FC Barcelona has been characterized by being not just a football organization, but also a powerful force for globalization, solidarity, integration and social cohesion. Qatar Airways fully identifies with these values, which is why this partnership between both organizations is much more than just a simple economic alliance. Furthermore, Qatar Airways’ partnership with FC Barcelona will help to position the airline in the world.
Qatar Airways will work with FC Barcelona to create joint initiatives and will especially focus on connecting with the club’s fans and also with underprivileged children to spread the love of the game to all corners of the globe.
A new FC Barcelona logojet is on the horizon.
Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-FDZ A7-BFD (msn 41427) of the cargo division of Qatar Airways taxies at Amsterdam.
Emirates (Dubai) has announced the launch of nonstop passenger services to Taipei, its 16th destination in the Far East.
The service will commence on February 10, 2014, initially with six nonstop flights per week to Taipei’s Taoyuan International Airport.
The route will be operated by a three class Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft equipped with eight luxurious private suites in First Class, 42 lie-flat seats in Business Class, and generous space for 304 passengers in Economy Class, along with gourmet cuisine in all classes.
Emirates now operates services to 134 destinations in 76 countries from Dubai. Earlier this year Emirates launched services to Warsaw and Algiers, followed by Haneda, Japan in June.
Emirates has announced plans to launch services to Stockholm starting September 4, to Clark International Airport in the Philippines and the trans-Atlantic Milan-New York (JFK) route on October 1; Conakry on October 27, Sialkot on November 5 and Kiev on January 16, 2014.
Taipei Flight Schedule – from February 10, 2014
|Day||Flight Number||Departure Airport||Departure Time||Arrival Airport||Arrival Time|
|Monday, Tuesday, Thursday||EK 366 EK 367||DXB TPE||0425 2315||TPE DXB||1615 0510 +1|
|Wednesday||EK 366 EK 367||DXB TPE||0225 2315||TPE DXB||1430 0510 +1|
|Saturday||EK 366 EK 367||DXB TPE||0020 2315||TPE DXB||1205 0510 +1|
|Sunday||EK 366 EK 367||DXB TPE||0340 2315||TPE DXB||1525 0510 +1|
LATAM Airlines Group (LAN Airlines and TAM Linhas Aereas) (Santago and Sao Paulo) reported it lost $330 million in the second quarter. The group was created last year with the merger of the two airlines. The group is struggling in Brazil with TAM due to a weakening Brazilian economy. TAM is cutting costs and reducing flights.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
LATAM Airlines Group Fleet Plans (excerpt from the report):
Top Copyright Photo: Rodrigo Cozzato/AirlinersGallery.com. Sporting new Sharklets, Airbus A320-214 PR-MYY (msn 5591) taxies at the Sao Paulo (Guarulhos) hub.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Alvaro Romero/ModoCharlie.com. Boeing 777-F6N N772LA (msn 37708) arrives at the Santiago hub.
AMR Corporation (Dallas/Fort Worth), the parent company of American Airlines, Inc. (Dallas/Fort Worth), and US Airways Group, Inc. (US Airways) (Phoenix) have announced that they filed a motion to set a trial date and a supporting brief in the United States District Court for the District Of Columbia in connection with the lawsuit filed by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) regarding the merger of the two airlines. In the motion, American Airlines and US Airways have requested a November 12, 2013 trial date.
In their filing, the Companies explain that their proposed trial date is very reasonable by recent historical standards. The DOJ request for 180 days, especially with one of the parties in bankruptcy, however, would be unprecedented and unreasonable in the circumstances. Based on the DOJ merger cases litigated to a decision since 2001, the average time from the DOJ’s complaint to trial is 70 days.
Top Copyright Photo: Ole Simon/AirlinersGallery.com. American Airlines’ Boeing 777-223 ER N781AN (msn 29586) approaches Madrid for landing.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-132 N814AW (msn 1281) lands at Long Beach near Los Angeles.
JetBlue Airways (New York) and British Airways (London) have announced an interline agreement to connect the carriers’ networks at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), Boston Logan International Airport (BOS), Orlando International Airport (MCO) and Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD), creating new possibilities for travelers.
This marks the first partnership between JetBlue and British Airways, and the 25th airline agreement for JetBlue. The carriers initially plan to interline on 18 daily trans-Atlantic British Airways flights, more than 50 U.S routes on the JetBlue network and more than 100 British Airways routes beyond London. British Airways’ intercontinental routes that are part of the interline agreement include Boston-London Heathrow (LHR), New York/JFK-London City Airport (LCY), New York/JFK- London Heathrow (LHR), New York/JFK-Paris Orly (ORY), Orlando-London Gatwick (LGW) and Washington/Dulles-London Heathrow (LHR). Tickets can be purchased through British Airways.
Customers will be able to enjoy access to a variety of British Airways destinations beyond London, including Europe, Africa, the Middle East and India, as well as non-stop access to Paris Orly Airport from New York. Meanwhile, British Airways customers can now book onward tickets to new U.S. destinations such as Burlington, Vermont (BTV); Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts (MVY); Nantucket, Massachusetts (ACK); and Portland, Maine (PWM).
At JFK Airport British Airways operates from Terminal 7. JetBlue operates from nearby Terminal 5, a quick ride away on the airport’s free AirTrain service.
At Boston Airport, where JetBlue is the largest carrier and offers nonstop service to 49 cities, more than any other airline, British Airways operates from Terminal E, while JetBlue operates from nearby Terminal C.
At Orlando, where JetBlue operates numerous routes to the Caribbean and Latin America, British Airways operates from Terminal B and JetBlue from Terminal A.
Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 N645JB (msn 2900) in the Harlequin tail design lands at the focus city of Long Beach, California.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Richard Vandervord/AirlinersGallery.com. British Airways’ Boeing 777-336 ER G-STBA (msn 40542) arrives at the London (Heathrow) hub.
Austrian Airlines (Vienna) has introduced a new long-haul cabin product and issued this statement:
As of now all passengers on Austrian’s long-haul flights benefit from the advantages of its new cabin. These advantages include a new level of seating comfort in Economy Class, an advanced board entertainment system offering non-stop entertainment, as well as innovative Business Class seats capable of being transformed into entirely flat beds. A total of 2,538 new seats were installed in the four Boeing 777 and six Boeing 767 airplanes belonging to Austrian’s long-haul fleet. An optimal array of seats ensures undisturbed flights. The Boeing 777’s Business Class provides four of five passengers sitting in a row with direct access to the aisle. This access is enjoyed, in fact, by every Business Class passenger in Austrian’s Boeing 767s. As before Austrian’s passengers are indulged by the prize-winning service and the first class DO and CO-catered fare. The menus provided in Business Class receive their final touches from flying chefs.
The reconfiguration of the cabins has considerably boosted customer satisfaction, which has risen substantial 31 percentage points – among passengers on long-haul flights – since the launch of the new cabin. This result places Austrian Airlines among the peak of the evaluations received by the airlines comprising the world-spanning Star Alliance.
Austrian CCO Karsten Benz states: “We are gratified by the enthusiasm shown by our customers. The significant rise in their satisfaction is proof that our investments of more than €90 million have paid off.”
Top Copyright Photos: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com (all others by Austrian Airlines). Boeing 777-2Z9 ER OE-LPC (msn 29313) climbs away from Tokyo (Narita) bound for the Vienna hub.
TAAG Angola Airlines (TAAG Linhas Aereas) (Luanda) is supporting the upcoming “Angola 2013″ Roller Hockey World Cup event in Angola with a large “Angola 2013 – 41st Mundial e Hoquei Patins” message emblazoned across the fuselage of this Boeing 777-3M2 registered as D2-TEG (msn 40805).
The 2013 FIRS Men’s Roller Hockey World Cup will be the 41st edition of the FIRS Roller Hockey World Cup. It will be held in Luanda and Namibe Providence, Angola from September 20-28, 2013.
This will be the first Roller Hockey World Cup played in Africa.
Copyright Photo: Pedro Batista/Flyingphotos. D2-TEG departs from Lisbon bound for Luanda with the additional markings.
Cathay Pacific Airways (Hong Kong) has announced that it will launch a new daily service from Newark Liberty International Airport to Hong Kong on March 1, 2014, subject to government approval. The new service will complement Cathay Pacific’s current four-times-daily service from John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York. The launch of the Newark service will provide more convenience and greater flexibility for passengers traveling to and from the New York metropolitan area.
The Newark service will be operated by Boeing 777-300ER aircraft.
Newark will become Cathay Pacific’s fifth gateway in the United States, and seventh in North America. The airline currently serves Chicago, Los Angeles, New York (JFK), San Francisco, Toronto and Vancouver.
The flight schedule for Cathay Pacific’s Newark (EWR) service, effective March 1, 2014, will be as follows (all times local and subject to change):
|Flight no||From||To||Departure/Arrival||Days of operation|
Daylight saving time:
|Flight no||From||To||Departure/Arrival||Days of operation|
Cathay Pacific Airways flies daily to Hong Kong and beyond, including over 22 destinations in Mainland China, from Chicago, Los Angeles, New York (JFK), and San Francisco.
Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-367 ER B-KPB (msn 35299) climbs into the sky at Toronto (Pearson).
Kenya Airways‘ (Nairobi) CEO Titus Naikumi estimates the airline has already lost around $4 million due to the August 7 fire that gutted the international arrival building at Nairobi’s Airport. The airline is suffering long delays and cancellations due to the damage. The airport has erected tents as a makeshift terminal according to this report by Reuters. Kenya Airways is currently operating at around 90 percent of its normal capacity.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-2U8 ER 5Y-KQS (msn 33683) prepares to depart from London (Heathrow) bound for Nairobi.
Air Canada (Montreal) today reported adjusted net income of $115 million or $0.41 per diluted share in the second quarter of 2013 compared to an adjusted net loss of $7 million or $0.02 per diluted share in the second quarter of 2012. Second quarter EBITDAR amounted to $385 million compared to EBITDAR of $312 million in the second quarter of 2012, an increase of $73 million or 23 per cent. On a GAAP basis, Air Canada’s net loss was $23 million or $0.09 per diluted share compared to a net loss of $161 million or $0.59 per diluted share in the same quarter of 2012.
“Air Canada delivered its best second quarter financial performance in the Corporation’s history, with records reported in all three measures of operating income, adjusted net income and EBITDAR,” said Calin Rovinescu, President and Chief Executive Officer. “These results are a clear indication that we are gaining momentum in our transformation towards sustainable profitability at Air Canada and underscore our Company-wide efforts to achieve cost containment and continue to improve on our revenue and yield performance.
“Our success in the quarter was not only financial – I am also especially pleased to report ongoing improvements in operational performance for the second consecutive quarter, with a 30 per cent improvement in On-Time Performance (OTP) for the quarter compared to the previous year. This is a reflection of the professionalism, collaboration and dedication of Air Canada’s 27,000 employees in taking care of our customers while operating a safe and efficient airline. Also, we were once again recognized by global travelers as the Best Airline in North America for the fourth consecutive year, a wonderful recognition of our efforts.
“Market response to the launch of our new leisure carrier, Air Canada rouge, on July 1st has been very positive and our plans are on track for growing the Air Canada rouge fleet to serve more holiday destination markets where we can now compete on a more cost effective basis. In addition, in early July, we began operating the first of five new Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft, marking the first significant growth in the mainline wide-body fleet in ten years to support continued development of our international network and Toronto hub as our North American gateway. These aircraft also debut our new Premium Economy cabin, offering customers a high-value option for enhanced comfort and service on select international routes.
“Looking ahead, our focus remains on the execution of the Corporation’s business plan led by our four core priorities: cost transformation, international growth, customer engagement and culture change to transform Air Canada into a sustainably profitable company for its shareholders and employees,” concluded Mr. Rovinescu.
Second Quarter Income Statement Highlights
Second quarter 2013 system passenger revenues were $2,757 million, an increase of $86 million or 3 per cent over the second quarter of 2012, on a 1.6 per cent growth in traffic and a 1.5 per cent improvement in yield. Passenger revenue per available seat mile (RASM) increased 0.9 per cent from the second quarter of 2012 on the yield growth. Air Canada reported a passenger load factor of 83.0 per cent for the second quarter of 2013, 0.5 percentage points below the second quarter of 2012. In the premium class cabin, passenger revenues increased $19 million or 3.3 per cent on yield and traffic growth of 2.2 per cent and 1.1 per cent, respectively, over the second quarter of 2012.
Operating expenses decreased $42 million or 1 per cent from the second quarter of 2012. Operating expense increases in wages, salaries and benefits and capacity purchase costs were more than offset by operating expense decreases in aircraft fuel and depreciation, amortization and impairment expenses.
Air Canada’s adjusted cost per available seat mile (adjusted CASM), which excludes fuel expense, the cost of ground packages at Air Canada Vacations and unusual items, decreased 1.4 per cent compared to the second quarter of 2012. The 1.4 per cent reduction in adjusted CASM was in line with the adjusted CASM decrease of 0.5 per cent to 1.5 per cent projected in Air Canada’s news release dated June 10, 2013.
In the second quarter 2013, Air Canada recorded operating income of $174 million compared to operating income of $63 million in the same quarter in 2012, an improvement of $111 million.
At June 30, 2013, cash and short-term investments amounted to $2,107 million or 17 per cent of 12-month trailing revenues (June 30, 2012 – $2,323 million or 20 per cent of 12-month trailing revenues).
At June 30, 2013, adjusted net debt of $3,975 million decreased $162 million from December 31, 2012, mainly reflecting the impact of an increase in cash balances.
Free cash flow of $147 million decreased $86 million from the second quarter of 2012, largely reflecting the addition of one Boeing 777 aircraft, partly offset by an increase in cash flows from operating activities due to better operating results.
For the third quarter of 2013, Air Canada expects its system ASM capacity, as measured by available seat miles (ASMs), to increase in the range of 2.5 to 3.5 per cent when compared to the third quarter of 2012.
Air Canada continues to expect its full year 2013 system ASM capacity to increase in the range of 1.5 to 2.5 per cent when compared to the full year 2012. Air Canada also continues to expect its full year 2013 domestic capacity to increase in the range of 1.5 to 2.5 per cent from the full year 2012.
For the third quarter of 2013, Air Canada expects adjusted CASM to decrease 1.5 to 2.5 per cent when compared to the third quarter of 2012.
Taking into account Air Canada’s adjusted CASM result for the second quarter 2013, Air Canada now expects its full year 2013 adjusted CASM to decrease in the range of 1.0 to 2.0 per cent from the full year 2012 (as opposed to the decrease of 0.5 to 1.5 per cent projected in Air Canada news release dated June 10, 2013).
Air Canada continues to expect its full year 2014 system capacity to increase by 9.0 to 11.0 per cent when compared to the full year 2013. This projected increase in capacity, expected to be deployed primarily on international markets, is consistent with the fleet plan discussed in Air Canada’s Second Quarter 2013 MD&A and is due to the addition of five high-density Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft, the first having been delivered in June 2013 and the remainder scheduled for delivery between August 2013 and February 2014, the scheduled arrival in 2014 of the first six Boeing 787 aircraft, and the planned growth from Air Canada rouge.
Air Canada’s outlook assumes Canadian GDP growth of 1.25 to 1.75 per cent for 2013 and Canadian GDP growth of 2.0 to 3.0 per cent for 2014.
Air Canada also expects that the Canadian dollar will trade, on average, at C$1.04 per U.S. dollar for the third quarter of 2013 and C$1.03 per U.S. dollar for the full year 2013 and that the price of jet fuel will average 87 cents per litre for the third quarter of 2013 and the full year 2013.
Copyright Photo: Ole Simon/AirlinersGallery.com. Formerly painted in the special Vancouver 2010 livery, Boeing 777-333 ER C-FIVS (msn 35784) gracefully climbs away from Frankfurt.
American launches codeshare agreement with LAN Colombia, creditors and shareholders tentatively approve the merger with US Airways
American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) has announced the launch of a new codeshare agreement with LAN Colombia (Bogota), adding new service to key destinations in Colombia and further strengthening American’s relationship with LATAM Airlines Group. Customers can begin booking travel on the codeshare flights for travel beginning August 8.
The new codeshare agreement will give American’s customers seamless connecting service within Colombia and provide LAN Colombia’s customers access to new destinations in the United States. The two airlines will codeshare on flights between the U.S. and Colombia and provide American’s customers access to four new destinations in Colombia – Barranquilla, Bucaramanga, Cartagena and Pereira, while giving LAN Colombia’s customers access to 12 new cities in the U.S. from Miami, including Chicago (O’Hare), Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles and New York (JFK).
In addition, LAN Colombia plans to join the oneworld® alliance in the fourth quarter of this year. LAN Colombia operates more than 990 weekly flights to cities throughout Colombia as well as destinations in Brazil and the U.S. From its Bogota hub, LAN Colombia offers 125 daily flights, including service to 20 Colombian cities.
In addition to the codeshare agreement with LAN Colombia, later this year American will launch new service from Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) to Bogota (BOG), demonstrating its mission to provide customers with expanded options through a growing network footprint in Latin America. American currently operates up to 35 weekly flights from its hub in Miami to Bogota (BOG), Cali (CLO) and Medellin (MDE).
In others news, AMR Corporation, the parent company of American Airlines, Inc., announced the preliminary voting results on the Company’s Plan of Reorganization, which indicate overwhelming acceptance of the Plan by those creditors and shareholders entitled to vote.
Of the eight creditor classes entitled to vote, at least 88 percent of the ballots received and tabulated in each class, representing more than 97 percent of the claims value voting in each class, were voted in favor of the Plan. Additionally, more than 99 percent of the shares tabulated for the class of AMR stockholders voted to accept the Plan.
The final voting results for the Plan will be certified and filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York in advance of the confirmation hearing on August 15, 2013.
On June 7, 2013, the Court authorized the company to begin soliciting approval of the Plan from AMR’s creditors and stockholders. Voting on the Plan ended July 29, 2013 at 5 p.m. EDT.
The effective date of the Plan and American’s Chapter 11 emergence are expected to occur simultaneously with the closing of the merger with US Airways. The merger is expected to close in the third quarter of 2013.
Top Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Brand new Boeing 777-323 ER N725AN (msn 41666) was handed over to American Airlines on July 31, 2013.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Bernardo Andrade/AirlinersGallery.com. Former AIRES Colombia Boeing 737-73S EI-EEB (msn 29081) of LAN Colombia taxies past the camera at Sao Paulo (Guarulhos).
ANA (All Nippon AIrways) (Tokyo) and Boeing have announced ANA has ordered three additional 777-300 ER (extended range) airplanes. The order, valued at approximately $945 million at current list prices, will increase the total number of 777s in ANA’s fleet to 57 airplanes once delivered. ANA currently operates 26 Boeing 777-300s (see below).
In route news, ANA will increase the number of flights between Tokyo-Narita, and Yangon Airport in Myanmar, to seven flights per week, from three. As a result, there will be a daily service on this route from September 30, 2013. In addition, seat capacity for the route will be increased by replacing the Boeing 737-700 aircraft with the 767-300 ER aircraft.
ANA will also announce the name of a new Narita International Airport-based leisure carrier. The new subsidiary will replace the now failed joint venture with AirAsia, named AirAsia Japan. This unit will served leisure destinations such as Guam and Hawaii and will launch operations with two aircraft. The fleet will expand to five aircraft by March 2014 according to Reuters.
On the financial side, ANA Holdings reported a $57.3 million operating loss for the fiscal first quarter ending on June 30.
In addition, the flag carrier announced its new in-flight services and the new “Inspiration of JAPAN” tagline and issued this statement:
|From late August, 2013, ANA will begin flying aircraft adorned with the tagline ‘Inspiration of JAPAN’, ANA’s brand concept. Alongside of this tagline, ANA will enhance its in-flight services and introduce new services throughout this fiscal year, starting from September.Inspiration of Japan
‘Inspiration of JAPAN’, which is the products and services brand of ANA, will be re-stated as the company tagline and will be designed on all of ANA’s aircraft. This will represent many aspects of the Japanese culture and spirit, including skills in innovation and technology, Japanese courtesy and precision, and the spirit of customer service at the heart of ANA.In addition to the tagline, national flag of Japan will also be designed at the front of the aircraft in order to emphasize our proud of Japanese heritage to global passengers.THE CONNOISSEURS
The first in-flight service enhancement to be launched in September will be THE CONNOISSEURS project. THE CONNOISSEURS is an in-flight meal team composed of 10 renowned chefs, 5 beverage specialists and 9 of ANA’s own catering chefs, among the most talented of any of the world’s airlines. The team will produce a range of meals and drinks for our international and domestic flights. See ‘Notes to Editors’ section for more information on the chefs and menu.
New First and Business Class Bedding and Amenities
ANA will also provide a new amenity kit service in Business Class that will surely make passengers relax and enjoy our flights. Passengers will receive a pouch filled with L’OCCITANE products, originating from Provence in southern France.
As the first airline in Japan, and one of the few global airlines being recognized as the highest 5-Star airline by SKYTRAX, ANA will continue to further enhance the services we offer to our customers.
|New bedding for long-haul flights – Ultimate in cabin comfortANA presents a new selection of bedding, using the latest innovative technologies that are the pride of Nishikawa Sangyo Co., Ltd., a leading Japanese manufacturer of bedding products since its founding in 1566. Based on the theories of its Japan Research Laboratory of Sleep Science, we now offer items such as highly functional Nanofront® fibers from Teijin, and the finest organic materials from Tenerita. We hope you will enjoy your journey above the clouds.First Class
Quality of sleep is determined by multiple factors including posture, bedding texture, weight, heat retention, and breathability. Our ultra-light comforters are made from the highly functional Teijin fibers using the latest technologies from Nishikawa Sangyo. Moreover, its AiR® mattress features a unique structure that disperses body pressure, while its Angel Float® pillow offers a flexible fit even when lying face up or sideways.
Also enjoy our blankets made with the finest cashmere and Tenerita’s organic cotton that meets strict international standards, as well as the double-sided knitted loungewear with a truly soft texture.
Applicable flights: Routes departing from Japan bound for North America and Europe
Applicable class: First Class
In Business Class, bed pads are Nishikawa Sangyo’s Air Cyclone® customized for the ANA BUSINESS STAGGERED seats. Turning over during sleep is easy due to the unique three-layer structure and moderate resistance. These bed pads also offer excellent breathability and comfort. And because the reverse side is skid resistant, they can also be used as seat cushions. The comforters are Bodyline Quilts that fit your body. We’ve also introduced structural pillows from Nishikawa Sangyo for a perfect fit from your neck to the back of your head.
Applicable flights: Routes departing from Japan bound for North America and Europe (except Honolulu)
*New bed pads will be introduced on flights equipped with ANA BUSINESS STAGGERED seats only.
Applicable class: Business Class
Top Copyright Photo: Keith Burton/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-381 ER JA733A (msn 32648) arrives at London (Heathrow).
Air France (Paris) and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) issued its financial report for the first six months of 2013 including subsidiary Transavia Airlines (Amsterdam). The group reported an operating profit of $105 for the first half turning around a comparable loss in the first six months of 2012. The group expects to make an operating profit for the entire year.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Read the analysis by Bloomberg: CLICK HERE
Top Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A380-861 F-HPJE (msn 052) climbs away from Washington (Dulles).
Bottom Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-306 ER PH-BVD (msn 35979) in the SkyTeam motif taxies to the runway at the Amsterdam hub.
Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) today reported financial results for the June 2013 quarter. Highlights from the quarter include:
- Delta’s net profit for the June 2013 quarter was $844 million, or $0.98 per diluted share, excluding special items1. This result is a record June quarter profit excluding special items and is a $258 million improvement year-over-year.
- Including $159 million in special items, Delta’s GAAP net income was $685 million, or $0.80 per diluted share.
- The company announced a balanced capital deployment plan, targeted at creating up to $5 billion of value for shareholders by 2017 through further debt reduction and the return of more than $1 billion to shareholders over the next three years by means of $200 million of annual dividends and a $500 million share repurchase program.
- June quarter results include $118 million of profit sharing expense in recognition of Delta employees’ contributions to the company’s financial performance.
- Delta generated $1.3 billion of operating cash flow and $730 million of free cash flow in the June 2013 quarter, and ended the period with adjusted net debt of $10.2 billion.
Delta’s operating revenue declined $25 million in the June 2013 quarter compared to the June 2012 quarter. Traffic increased 0.5 percent on a 0.8 percent increase in capacity.
- Passenger revenue increased 0.7 percent, or $63 million, compared to the prior year period. Passenger unit revenue (PRASM) was flat year over year with a 0.2 percent improvement in yield.
- Cargo revenue decreased 11.4 percent, or $30 million, on declining freight yields.
- Other revenue decreased 5.6 percent, or $58 million, as a result of the decision to discontinue a number of low margin-producing third-party maintenance contracts.
Comparisons of revenue-related statistics are as follows:
2Q13 versus 2Q12
|Passenger Revenue||2Q13 ($M)||Change
Cash from operations during the June 2013 quarter was $1.3 billion, driven by the company’s June quarter profit and the seasonal increase in advanced ticket sales, which was partially offset by $500 million of accelerated pension funding. The company generated $730 million of free cash flow.
Capital expenditures during the June 2013 quarter were $704 million, including $360 million for the acquisition of 49% of Virgin Atlantic and $238 million in fleet investments, including aircraft parts and modifications. During the quarter, Delta’s debt maturities and capital leases were $405 million.
Delta ended the quarter with adjusted net debt of $10.2 billion and the company has now achieved nearly $7 billion in net debt reduction since 2009. This debt reduction strategy produced a $43 million year-over-year reduction in interest expense in the June quarter. As of June 30, 2013, Delta had $5.7 billion in unrestricted liquidity, including $3.9 billion in cash and short-term investments and $1.8 billion in undrawn revolving credit facilities.
Total operating expense in the quarter decreased year-over-year by $805 million driven by the savings from Delta’s structural cost initiatives and lower mark-to-market adjustments on fuel hedges, partially offset by the impact of operational, service and employee investments.
Consolidated unit cost excluding fuel expense, profit sharing and special items (CASM-Ex2), was 2.5 percent higher in the June 2013 quarter on a year-over-year basis, driven by the impact of wage increases and operational and service investments. GAAP consolidated CASM decreased 9 percent, driven by lower fuel expense.
Fuel expense for the June quarter declined $710 million year-over-year, or $288 million excluding mark-to-market adjustments, as a result of lower fuel prices and prior year hedge losses. Delta’s average fuel price3 was $3.03 per gallon for the June quarter. For the June quarter, operations at the Trainer refinery produced a $51 million loss ($0.05 cents per gallon impact) driven by the elevated price of the Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) required under the Environmental Protection Agency’s Renewable Fuel Standard.
Balanced Approach to Capital Deployment
In May, Delta announced a five year financial plan and a balanced capital deployment program aimed at creating up to $5 billion of value for shareholders, including returning more than $1 billion to shareholders over the next three years. The company’s financial plan focuses on free cash flow generation through a combination of expected earnings improvements and a disciplined approach to capital investment. Over the next five years, Delta plans to reinvest $2.0 – $2.5 billion annually, or approximately 50 percent of its operating cash flow, into improving the company’s fleet, facilities, products and technology.
The resulting free cash flow will be used to return cash to shareholders, further reduce the company’s debt, and opportunistically address longer-term pension funding needs, driving up to $5 billion of value to Delta’s shareholders. Specifically,
- The company expects to achieve an adjusted net debt level of $7 billion by 2017, a $5 billion reduction over 2012. By meeting the $7 billion target, Delta will have reduced its adjusted net debt by $10 billion since 2009, significantly decreasing the company’s balance sheet risk and accreting more than $750 million of interest expense savings for shareowners;
- Delta’s Board of Directors initiated a quarterly dividend and declared a $0.06 per share dividend for shareholders of record as of August 9, 2013. This dividend will be paid on September 10, 2013. In addition, the Board authorized a $500 million share repurchase program, to be completed no later than June 30, 2016. Together, these two programs are designed to return more than $1 billion of capital to shareholders over the next three years;
- The company also plans to make up to $1 billion of incremental contributions to the company’s defined benefit pension plans over the next five years. These contributions would be in addition to the $650 – $700 million annual contribution requirement.
Delta recorded special items totaling a $159 million charge in the June 2013 quarter, including:
- a $125 million charge for mark-to-market adjustments for fuel hedges settling in future periods; and
- a $34 million charge for facilities, fleet and other items, primarily associated with Delta’s domestic fleet restructuring.
Delta recorded special items totaling a $754 million charge in the June 2012 quarter, including:
- a $561 million charge for mark-to-market adjustments on fuel hedges settling in future periods;
- $171 million in severance and related costs associated with voluntary early out programs; and
- a $22 million charge for facilities, fleet and other items.
(1) Note A to the attached Consolidated Statements of Operations provides a reconciliation of non-GAAP financial measures used in this release and provides the reasons management uses those measures.
(2) CASM – Ex: In addition to fuel expense, profit sharing and special items, Delta believes excluding ancillary business costs is helpful to investors because ancillary business costs are not related to the generation of a seat mile. These businesses include aircraft maintenance and staffing services Delta provides to third parties and Delta’s vacation wholesale operations. The amounts excluded were $165 million and $244 million for the June 2013 and 2012 quarters, respectively. The amounts excluded were $350 million and $484 million for the six months ended June 30, 2013 and 2012, respectively. Management believes this methodology provides a more consistent and comparable reflection of Delta’s airline operations.
(3) Average fuel price per gallon: Delta’s June 2013 quarter average fuel price of $3.03 per gallon reflects the consolidated cost per gallon for mainline and regional operations, including contract carrier operations, and includes the impact of fuel hedge contracts with original maturity dates in the June 2013 quarter. On a GAAP basis, fuel price includes $125 million in fuel hedge mark-to-market adjustments recorded in periods other than the settlement period. The net refinery loss for the quarter was $51 million, or 5 cents per gallon. See Note A for a reconciliation of average fuel price per gallon to the comparable GAAP metric.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-232 LR N702DN (msn 29741) “The Spirit of Atlanta” prepares to land at Tokyo (Narita).
Turkish Airlines (Istanbul) has converted five Boeing 777-300 ER orders into firm orders according.
The aircraft will be delivered in 2016 and 2017, according to a filing with the Istanbul stock exchange.
Today, Boeing issued this statement:
Boeing and Turkish Airlines have announced a order for five 777-300 ER(Extended Range) airplanes, valued at $1.6 billion at list prices. The Turkish flag-carrier has exercised options on five 777-300 ERs that were first announced in December 2012 as part of a previous firm order for 15 777-300 ERs. Turkish Airlines now has 20 777-300 ERs currently on order from Boeing.
Turkish Airlines’ fleet currently includes 12 777-300 ERs, the first of which Boeing delivered in October 2010. In that time, the 777-300 ER has played a significant role in Turkish Airlines’ incredible long-haul growth.
Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-3F2 ER TC-JJN (msn 40795) is pictured at Everett (Paine Field).
Philippine Airlines (Philippines) (Manila) was planning to drop all service to Toronto (Pearson) on September 18 per Airline Route. The flag carrier was serving YYZ via an extension of the Manila-Vancouver route three days a week.
Update: According to Airline Route, PAL appears to have reversed its decision and has re-opened reservations for Toronto flights after September 18.
Copyright Photo: John Adlard/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-36N ER RP-C7776 (msn 37712) prepares to land at Sydney.
Philippine Airlines (Philippines) (Manila) is returning to Europe after an absence of 15 years after the European Union lifted its ban against the carrier. PAL intends to fly again to London, Paris, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, Rome and Madrid.
The airline issued this statement:
Copyright Photo: Micheil Keegan/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-36N RP-C7777 (msn 37709) prepares to land in Sydney.