Tag Archives: Czech Airlines-CSA

Smartwings and Czech Airlines file for protection against creditors as flights continue

Smartwings Group has made this announcement:

Members of Smartwings Group including Smartwings, a.s. (Smartwings) and České aerolinie, a.s. (Czech Airlines, CSA) today filed request to the Municipal Court in Prague to declare an extraordinary moratorium under the so-called Lex COVID legislation. This new law introduced the moratorium as a tool to alleviate the impact of the SARS CoV-2 coronavirus pandemic. The need to apply for the moratorium is solely driven by the impacts of the pandemic that has caused the largest crisis in aviation history. Both companies had been profitable before the pandemic broke out and they are expected to return to profitability once it subsides. The extraordinary moratorium will provide protection to both Smartwings and CSA at a time when their revenues have reduced significantly. Both companies will also obtain time to develop and negotiate a long-term sustainable financing solution that would benefit all concerned parties, i.e., creditors, employees, and passengers.

 

“Smartwings and CSA continue with their standard operations. Both companies operate all scheduled flights and have been resuming additional routes as the epidemiological situation and travel restrictions in the respective destinations allow. Smartwings Group, like other air carriers, has implemented restructuring measures to achieve operational efficiencies and savings. The extraordinarymoratorium is only a temporary measure that grants Smartwings and CSA the time they need to achieve their financial stability in cooperation with financing banks, aircraft lessors and other creditors. We believe that the steps we are taking today will help us to successfully overcome this unprecedented crisis,” says Jiří Šimáně, Board Chairman, Smartwings.

Due to the state of emergency declared by the Czech government and the adoption of special measures in response to the coronavirus breakout, Smartwings Group recorded a year-on-year decrease in air traffic volume of 95 percent between April and June 2020 and more than 80 percent in July and August. Since the onset of the epidemic, Smartwings and CSA have implemented a cost saving program and adopted every possible measure to mitigate the negative financial impact of the coronavirus crisis. Air carriers around the globe, including the largest players (such as Lufthansa, British Airways, Air France, KLM, easyJet, Swiss, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Emirates, American Airlines, etc.), have adopted similar measures. While many airlines have already benefited from the support from their national governments (e.g. in the form of capital injection or provision of state-guaranteed loans), Smartwings and CSA have not received any state-support to date.

A support program for large businesses active in the field of transportation and tourism was not implemented in the Czech Republic in the first months of the coronavirus crisis. The COVID Plus program aimed at such businesses that have been affected by the pandemic was launched by Export Guarantee and Insurance Corporation (EGAP) only in the second half of July after notifying the European Commission. Smartwings and CSA are taking steps now to benefit from this program.

“The loan guarantee application process is a complicated and lengthy procedure requiring the agreement of multiple parties. This is one of the primary reasons why Smartwings Group has resorted to the extraordinary moratorium. We are exploring all potential financing options to ensure business continuity of both companies. Throughout the process, we will be cooperating closely with our finance providers and other stakeholders. In this context, we have also mandated an international advisor EY, which has extensive experience in the field of restructuring and finance raising as well as the necessary aviation industry expertise,” adds Jiří Šimáně.

Smartwings currently operates flights from Prague to 25 destinations, from Brno to 9 destinations and from Ostrava to 2 destinations. CSA operates flights to 12 destinations and is planning to resume flights to Barcelona, Madrid, Budapest, Goteborg, Bucharest, Brussels, Warsaw, and Milan in September. Other routes are expected to be resumed depending on the coronavirus situation in the respective countries and applicable travel restrictions.

Smartwings was a successful business before the coronavirus crisis, reporting earnings before tax in the amount of CZK 183 million last year despite problems caused by a global grounding of Boeing 737 MAX aircraft. CSA reported earnings before tax in the amount of CZK 79.2 million in 2019 and has been profitable since Smartwings assumed partial management responsibility. Smartwings Group reported revenues of CZK 28 billion in 2019. Smartwings and CSA transported more than 9.6 million passengers in total last year.

Czech Airlines orders 4 Airbus A220s and upsizes 3 A320neos to A321XLRs

Czech Airlines has ordered four Airbus A220-300 aircraft and opted for additional range by upsizing a previous order for three A320neo to A321XLR.

The two fuel-efficient aircraft types will complement Czech Airlines’ existing fleet of six A319 and one A330-300, and allow it to continue extending its network to reach more markets. The airline will also benefit from the commonality of Airbus Family aircraft. The A220-300 will be fitted with 149 seats, while the A321XLR will cater for top comfort in a two-class layout with 195 seats.

The A321XLR is the next evolutionary step from the A321LR which responds to market needs for even more range and payload, creating more value for the airlines. From 2023, it will deliver an unprecedented Xtra Long Range of up to 4,700nm – with 30 percent lower fuel burn per seat compared with previous generation competitor aircraft. To date, the A320neo Family has captured more than 6,650 orders from nearly 110 customers.

Czech Airlines celebrates 95 years of flying

Celebrating 95 Years of flying

This year, Cezch Airlines will commemorate its 95th anniversary of the company’s foundation and launch of operations.
The first flight was on the Prague – Bratislava route.
The first flight departed Prague’s Kbely Airport on 29 October 29, 1923.
For this reason, some of the CSA aircraft are wearing additional 95 years sticker.
One of them is the largest aircraft on the fleet, the pictured A330-300 OK-YBA departing from Barcelona.
Top Copyright Photo (all others by CSA): Czech Airlines (Korean Air) Airbus A330-323 OK-YBA (msn 425) (95 Years) BCN (Javier Rodriguez). Image: 942611.
Czech Airlines aircraft slide show:
Bottom Copyright Photo: Czech Airlines-CSA ATR 42-500 OK-KFN (msn 637) (95 Years) BTS (Adrián Rúčka). Image: 942625.

Celebrating 95 Years of flying

Eurowings to see its largest growth spurt in 2018

Eurowings (Airberlin) Airbus A320-214 D-ABNI (msn 1717) BSL (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 937576.

Previously on September 26, 2017, Lufthansa’s Supervisory Board approved and announced the rapid growth of its lower-cost Eurowings, especially in Europe:

The Supervisory Board of Deutsche Lufthansa AG approved the rapid expansion of the Eurowings Group at its meeting in September 2017. For this purpose, an investment framework of around EUR 1 billion was approved for the purchase and leasing of aircraft. The funds were used towards obtaining up to 61 aircraft, including 41 Airbus A320 Family aircraft and 20 Bombardier Q400s.

During the summer of 2017, Lufthansa wet leased 20 aircraft operated for Eurowings under the existing wet lease agreement with Airberlin; 15 by acquisition and five more leased with a purchasing option.

The Eurowings Group is expected to require up to 3,000 additional jobs in the cockpit and cabin operations, due to the hiring and intended acquisition of companies of the Air Berlin Group. Job advertisements and staffing have already started.

Carsten Spohr, Chairman of the Executive Board of Deutsche Lufthansa AG: “We now have the great opportunity to take a decisive step forward with Eurowings in Europe. The Supervisory Board and the Executive Board agree that we are determined to seize this opportunity. With the approval of an additional investment framework for the acquisition of aircraft, the necessary preconditions have now been met. For Eurowings, it will be a major challenge to cope with the rapid growth. I am particularly pleased that this will enable us to offer up to 3,000 new employees a secure perspective in the Eurowings Group.”

Adria Airways Airbus A319-132 S5-AAR (msn 4301) ZRH (Rolf Wallner). Image: 912192.

Above Copyright Photo: Adria Airways Airbus A319-132 S5-AAR (msn 4301) ZRH (Rolf Wallner). Image: 912192.

The airline is growing so fast, it is leasing in aircraft from other airlines to meet the expansion in the first quarter of 2018 following the failure of Airberlin. Adria Airways (above) will operate Airbus A319s from the Cologne/Bonn hub for Eurowings. Czech Airlines will operate its Airbus A319s for Eurowings from Hamburg (below).

Czech Airlines-CSA Airbus A319-112 OK-MEK (msn 3043) LHR (SPA). Image: 940351.

Above Copyright Photo: Czech Airlines-CSA Airbus A319-112 OK-MEK (msn 3043) LHR (SPA). Image: 940351.

Air Europa will operate its Boeing 737-800s from Munich and Stuttgart for Eurowings (below).

Celebrating 30 years of flying

Above Copyright Photo: Air Europa Boeing 737-85P WL EC-MKL (msn 60585) (30 Anos) ZRH (Andi Hiltl). Image: 940226.

The carrier has already launched a significant amount of new routes in the fourth quarter of 2017 and will continue in early 2018.

Here is the full list of new routes by country: CLICK HERE

Top Copyright Photo (all others by Eurowings): Eurowings (Airberlin) Airbus A320-214 D-ABNI (msn 1717) BSL (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 937576.

Eurowings aircraft slide show:

Eurowings destination Europe:

Czech Airlines to lay off a third of its staff due to a drop in demand in eastern Europe

Czech Airlines-CSA (Prague) has been forced to lay off 280 staff members, a third of its workforce, including 70 pilots due to slumping traffic. The company is restructuring to meet the current conditions. As part of this restructuring, the company is grounding or leasing out its six Airbus A320s as it attempts to reduce its fleet according to Reuters. Tragically the airline has put its emphasis on serving destinations in eastern Europe. The current on-going conflict in the eastern Ukraine has translated to a drop in traffic.

The holding company of the flag carrier issued this statement:

The new Czech Aeroholding management reviewed in detail the economic results of all companies incorporated in the Czech Aeroholding Group, including Czech Airlines, upon its appointment at the turn of June and July 2014. The second largest shareholder, Korean Air, was then informed about the situation in Czech Airlines, too. Together, they agreed to draft a restructuring plan with the goal of keeping the current revenue upon decreased costs. This plan was unanimously approved by all shareholders in a General Meeting at the beginning of September. Several restructuring measures, predominantly in the revenue area such as a new one-way tickets concept, flight schedule changes and changes to the company’s transport network (including those in the Russian market), have already brought first results. For the first time in several years, Czech Airlines will record a net operational profit for the entire summer season. Concurrent with the restructuring plan, negotiations among all shareholder regarding investments into Czech Airlines are currently in progress. Upon their closing, Czech Aeroholding and all shareholders will inform the general public of their future steps in regards to Czech Airlines.

Copyright Photo: OSDU/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 OK-MEI (msn 3060) in the special “Prague Love You – Prague Airport” arrives at Moscow (Sheremetyevo) from Prague.

Czech Airlines-CSA: AG Slide Show

Czech Airlines to put its first Airbus A330 in service tomorrow to Seoul

Czech Airlines-CSA A330-300 OK-YBA (07-90 1923-2013)(Nose)(CSA)(LR)

Czech Airlines-CSA (Prague) will place its newly-acquired Airbus A330-300 into revenue service tomorrow (June 1) from Prague to Seoul (Incheon). The airliner was delivered on may 14 and is leased from its new partner Korean Airlines (Seoul).

Copyright Photos: Czech Airlines. Airbus A330-323X OK-YBA (msn 425) is now wearing this new 90 Years 1923-2013 logo.

Czech Airlines: AG Slide Show

Czech Airlines-CSA A330-300 OK-YBA (07)(Cabin) PRG (CSA)(LR)

Video (in Czech): OK-YBA’s arrival in Prague on May 14.

Czech Airlines-CSA A330-300 OK-YBA (07)(Ldg) PRG (CSA)(LR)

Korean Air finalizes its 44% investment in Czech Airlines

Czech Airlines-CSA (Prague) has a new savior. Announced last month, Korean Air (Seoul) finalized its 44 percent investment in the flag carrier yesterday (April 11). The Czech government has now been successful in finding a viable airline partner to help the struggling carrier survive the difficult current environment in Europe. Without a new partner, Czech Airlines would have been liquidated by the government.

However Korean Air has publicly stated it is not interested in managing the the Czech carrier. Korean Air is likely to use its new investment as a feeder airline for its Asian flights.

Read the full report from Reuters: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Pascal Simon. Airbus A319-112 OK-NEM (msn 3406) slips into Zurich after a short hop from Prague.

Czech Airlines: AG Slide Show

Korean Air: AG Slide Show

Czech government approves the Korean Air $3.4 million bid to acquire 44% of Czech Airlines

Czech Airlines-CSA (Prague) will have a new airline partner. The Czech government has approved Korean Air‘s (Seoul) $3.4 million offer to acquire 44 percent of the stock of state-owned Czech Airlines.

Read the full report from The Financial Times: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Keith Burton. Airbus A320-214 OK-GEB (msn 1450) departs from Southend.

Czech Airlines-CSA: AG Slide Show

Qatar Airways is “interested” in the Czech Airlines privatization

Qatar Airways (Doha) is interested in the privatization of Czech Airlines-CSA (Prague) according to this report by Reuters. However the Gulf carrier has not yet made a decision on whether it will bid for the flag carrier.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Top Copyright Photo: Dave Glendinning. Brand-new Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner A7-BCL (msn 38330) made its first visit to London (Heathrow) on December 13 where it is pictured landing on the historic first flight.

Qatar Airways: AG Slide Show

Czech Airlines-CSA: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Ole Simon. Airbus A319-112 OK-NEO (msn 3452) prepares to land at Stockholm (Arlanda).

Czech Airlines to resume long-haul services with Airbus A330s, will retire the last Boeing 737-500 at the end of the winter season

Czech Airlines-CSA (Prague) is again getting back into the long-haul business with leased Airbus A330s (previously operated with Airbus A310s). The first route will be to Seoul starting in June 2013. The airline is also adding short-range flights to Florence, Nice and Perm (Russia) on March 31, 2013. Czech Airlines is also retiring the last Boeing 737-500 (pictured) at the end of the current winter schedule. The company has issued the following statement:

After a three-year hiatus, Czech Airlines is again including its own long-haul flights in its flight schedule. A wide-body Airbus A330 will join the airline’s fleet, enabling Czech Airlines to launch new scheduled service to Seoul, South Korea, and to initiate more intensive code-share cooperation with Korean Air in operating long-haul flights from Prague via Seoul to the East Asia, based on the model of cooperation being successfully employed with Etihad Airways. The new agreement will also ensure better connections to Czech Airlines flights from Prague to Europe for Korean Air’s clients. In addition to Seoul, Czech Airlines will introduce new service to Perm, Nice, Munich, Zurich and Florence in the 2013 summer season.

The twice-weekly Airbus A330-300 service to Seoul (Incheon) will commence on June 1 per Airline Route. The carrier is expected to also launch A330 service to Almaty, Ekaterinburg and Moscow (Sheremetyevo).

Next June, a long-haul Airbus A330 hired on the basis of operative leasing will join the Czech Airlines fleet. Among other flights, the aircraft will be deployed on Czech Airlines’ new scheduled long-haul service to Seoul. The flights will leave Prague every Saturday and Sunday, and Seoul every Sunday and Tuesday, supplementing the four weekly Korean Air flights. The two airlines will share codes on the route.

Seoul is not the only new destination in the Czech Airlines flight schedule in the 2013 summer season. The airline will open regular service to Perm in Russia, as well as Nice, Munich, Zurich and Florence. To certain destinations, it is introducing a noon flight wave, and increasing the number of flights compared to the 2012 summer season. These destinations include Berlin, Düsseldorf, Hamburg, Copenhagen, Milan, Stockholm and Warsaw. In making a year-on-year comparison, the airline will also offer more weekly flights to Nizhny Novgorod, Rostov-on-Don and Ufa. Czech Airlines will newly add Brisbane, Singapore and Nairobi to its flight schedule, which will be operated in cooperation with Etihad Airways. Another innovation in the summer flight schedule is a change in the model of operation to Baltic destinations. Vilnius, Riga and Tallinn will remain in Czech Airlines’ offer, and will be operated by airBaltic on a code-share basis.

In the 2013 summer season, only Airbus (A330, A320, A319) and ATR (ATR 72 and ATR 42) aircraft will be deployed on Czech Airlines flights. The airline will have thereby complied with one of its last restructuring tasks – the transition to a fleet of just two aircraft makes. Boeing 737-500 aircraft will be retired from the fleet by the end of the current winter season.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems. Boeing 737-55S OK-XGE (msn 26543) is currently painted in the SkyTeam colors. The airliner is pictured at Palma de Mallorca.

Czech Airlines-CSA: AG Slide Show

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