Wednesday, May 02, 2012

AviTrader Daily Aviation News Alert

This is an overview of all articles linked within the selected daily newsletter.
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IAG thwarted as Niki returns to founder Lauda’s ownership

January 23, 2018 · 134 Views

Despite the best efforts of British Airways’ owner, IAG, the purchase of Niki, the low-cost subsidiary of now defunct Air Berlin, has been secured by the airline’s founder, former F1 World Champion, Niki Lauda.
Several weeks ago, IAG had been announced as the successful bidder for the bankrupt Austrian airline, though at the time, insolvency proceedings were going through German courts. In a motion filed by consumer rights’ group Fairplane, these proceedings were subsequently moved to Austrian courts as there were concerns that the rights of passengers owed money by Niki would not receive fair treatment if insolvency for both Niki and Air Berlin were handled by the same German jurisdiction.
With the transfer of proceedings and Niki subsequently filing for insolvency through Austrian courts, the existing bid of €20m (£18m) and additional liquidity of up to €16.5m from IAG was overturned and it had to then be resubmitted through the appropriate channels.
This provided Niki Lauda, and his company Laudamotion GmbH, the opportunity to make a third, and subsequently successful offer for the stricken airline. From the very onset of the disposal of Niki’s assets, Lauda had expressed a strong interest in reacquiring the airline which he founded in 2003, and which he sold to Air Berlin in 2011. He made his first offer for Niki back in September last year. Laudamotion took over Amir Air, another Austrian Carrier, early in 2016.
The disposal of Niki had proved problematic from the onset. Originally, Germany’s flagship carrier Lufthansa had made a bid of €210 million for the Air Berlin asset, but an EU ruling which indicated that the bid was unlikely to be successful owing to concerns over unfair competition saw it withdrawn.
According to Niki’s administrators, Laudamotion had emerged as the best bidder in a transparent auction process. However, the final price remains undisclosed, and in an interview with local television, Lauda confirmed that an express agreement had been reached with the administrators not to reveal the sum being paid.

Boeing rolls out first 787 Dreamliner built in South Carolina

April 30, 2012 · 48 Views

The first Boeing 787 Dreamliner to be assembled in South Carolina rolled out of final assembly on April 27th. The airplane’s rollout marks the first time that a Boeing commercial airplane has been produced in the South-eastern United States. Boeing announced that it had selected North Charleston, S.C., as the location for the second 787 final assembly line on Oct. 28, 2009, and broke ground on the site in November of that year. The South Carolina final assembly facility was completed in June 2011, and production began later that same month. The airplane next goes to the flight line, where it will go through systems checks and engine runs in advance of taxi testing and first flight. The airplane remains on schedule for delivery to Air India in mid-2012.

ExecuJet Australasia achieves IS-BAO registration

April 30, 2012 · 75 Views

ExecuJet announced that its Australasian operation has achieved the International Standard for Business Aircraft Operations (IS-BAO) certification, as of 22 March, 2012. The initial accreditation audit was completed with zero findings. ExecuJet Australasia’s flight department joins the list of proactive flight departments around the world that have implemented IS-BAO to manage the safety, security and efficiency of their operations. ExecuJet is also IS-BAO certified in Africa, Europe and in the Middle East.

Jet Airways takes delivery of new Boeing 737-900ER from GECAS

April 30, 2012 · 109 Views

GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS) announced delivery of a new leased Boeing 737-900ER aircraft to India’s Jet Airways to expand the airline’s fleet. The aircraft comes from GECAS’ existing order book with Boeing.

Alitalia-WheelTug to introduce electric drive system for aircraft taxi

April 30, 2012 · 55 Views

Alitalia and WheelTug announced the signing of a partnership to introduce an innovative electric drive system for taxiing the Airbus A320 family of aircraft. The patented WheelTug electric drive system consists of an electric motor – called “Chorus” – installed in the aircraft nose wheel and powered by the APU (Auxiliary Power Unit), the auxiliary engine installed in the tail of aircraft which provides energy to the onboard systems when the main engines are off. The equipment allows aircraft to taxi both forwards – without the use of main engines -and backwards – without the use of a tow tug. The Chorus electric motor allows the movement of the aircraft from the departure gate to the runway, and upon landing, from runway exit to the stand for passenger disembarkation. With this latest agreement Alitalia becomes the launch customer for this innovative technology, having reserved 100 WheelTug systems for its A320 aircraft.

GE Aviation names Sokol JSC as an Authorized Service Center

April 30, 2012 · 209 Views

Sokol JSC, a leading service provider known throughout the Russian Federation, has signed an agreement with GE Aviation to become an Authorized Service Center (ASC) for GE’s M601 and H80 turboprop engines. Under this agreement, Sokol JSC will provide local service support for the M601 series and the new GE H80 turboprop. Sokol JSC’s maintenance services will include all aspects of line maintenance as well as on-wing heavy repair, troubleshooting, TBO extension inspections, and Sokol will maintain a stock of spare parts.

ALC announces additional aircraft purchases and lease placements

April 30, 2012 · 155 Views

Air Lease Corporation announced  the following transactions covering 11 twin aisle aircraft and two single aisle aircraft including: the purchase of eight new Boeing 787-9 aircraft for lease to Vietnam Airlines with deliveries of the eight 787-9 “Dreamliner” aircraft scheduled for 2017 and 2018. This transaction marks ALC’s longest lead time for a lease placement to date. ALC also purchased from Macquarie Aviation one B777-300ER on long term lease to Emirates (a new customer for ALC), one incremental A330-200 on long term lease to KLM delivering in 2013, one A330-300 from the ALC pipeline on long term lease to Sichuan Airlines delivering in 2013 (Sichuan airlines also executed a four year extension on one A319 aircraft currently on lease from ALC) and one Embraer 190 from the ALC pipeline leased to LAM (Mozambique) delivering in 2012.

Bombardier breaks ground on expansion of Wichita’s Learjet site

April 30, 2012 · 118 Views

Bombardier Learjet reported the official ground breaking of the expansion of its Wichita Learjet site. The expansion, the largest in Bombardier Learjet’s history, includes the Bombardier Flight Test Center, the establishment of Bombardier Centers of Excellence for Engineering and Information Technology, new facilities for paint and production flight testing as well as a new delivery center and employee parking lots. By 2022, more than 1,000 jobs will have been created at Wichita’s Learjet site. Bombardier Aerospace continues to invest in both current production Learjet aircraft as well as innovative products such as the all new Learjet 85 midsize jet. Launched on October 30, 2007, the Learjet 85 aircraft is on schedule for entry into service in 2013.

Lockheed Martin delivers last AMP C-5 to Air Force

April 30, 2012 · 83 Views

Lockheed Martin completed delivery of the 79th and final C-5 Galaxy aircraft of the current Avionics Modernization Program, on April 27th. Aircraft 70-448 will be assigned to the Air Force Reserve 433rd Airlift Wing at Lackland AFB in San Antonio, Texas. The AMP program is the first part of a two-step modernization process. AMP began in 1998 and incorporates a mission computer, a glass cockpit with digital avionics, autopilot capabilities and state-of-the-art communications, navigation and surveillance components for air traffic management.

The second phase of the C-5 modernization effort is the Reliability Enhancement and Re-engining Program. Of the 79 C-5s that received the AMP modifications, 52 will be upgraded with newer, quieter CF-6 engines and more than 70 additional improvements as part of the transition to becoming a C-5M Super Galaxy.

Rolls-Royce receives $315m contract to supply lifesystem technologie

May 1, 2012 · 76 Views

Rolls-Royce has received a contract for $315m from Pratt & Whitney to supply the Rolls-Royce LiftSystem for 17 F-35B Lightning II aircraft. Rolls-Royce is the only company to produce the advanced technology that enables F-35B aircraft to perform Short Take Off and Vertical Landings (STOVL), and that provides increased mission flexibility. The LiftSystem comprises a Rolls-Royce LiftFan, Roll Posts and a 3-Bearing Swivel Module. Rolls-Royce is a subcontractor to Pratt & Whitney, which manufactures the F135 engine for the F-35 Lightning II programme. Under the contract, Rolls-Royce will produce 17 LiftSystems for the fourth lot of Low-Rate Initial Production (LRIP) through 2012, with a further order for the fifth lot expected later in the year. To date, Rolls-Royce has delivered 32 LiftSystems, plus spare parts.

Cambridge Airport pledges £20m investment with aim of creating centre of aerospace excellence

May 1, 2012 · 192 Views

The Marshall Group, owner of Cambridge Airport, UK, are preparing to embark on a £20m investment programme to open up the green field site to the south site of the runway, kick-starting the next phase of enhancements at the expanding East of England airport. Ground-breaking is scheduled for early July. The investment will focus on a new taxiway, which will provide a key access route to the south of the runway. Spend will also centre on a major rehabilitation of the runway which will enhance its performance and maintain the airport’s critical asset for a further 12 years. The project will also deliver significant environmental benefits through the implementation of an improved drainage system.

This next strategic phase follows a strong year for the airport which saw executive aviation movements increase, the introduction of regional airline services and the addition of leading aviation companies as tenants. After a competitive tender process, Cambridge Airport selected ExecuJet Europe to run its Fixed Based Operation (formerly Marshall Business Aviation) and the Swiss headquartered company moved in on 1 January this year. It subsequently announced it was moving its flight operations to the UK from Zurich and will have some 50 plus personnel based at Cambridge by year end. Other tenant companies taking up residency since EBACE 2011 include business aircraft sales distributors Action Aviation and the Pilot Training College, PTC.

Gama Support Services to expand US based maintenance and servicing activity

May 1, 2012 · 86 Views

US based, Gama Support Services, a Gama Group Company, announced its plans to expand its US based MRO business for corporate aircraft maintenance and support. Gama has been intensively building the infrastructure for this effort since 2009 with the creation of three separate FAA and EASA approved Part 145 Certified Repair Stations located in Bridgeport, CT (BDR), Teterboro, NJ (TEB), and West Palm Beach, FL (PBI). Each of the repair stations has expansive authorizations to perform base and line maintenance on most models of Gulfstream, Falcon, Bombardier, Cessna and Hawker aircraft, as well as all of the associated powerplants. Gama is focusing its growth initially at the West Palm Beach site, with the creation of a number of new technicians (engineering) jobs to service the increasing demand from aircraft operators in search of a ‘concierge’ level service.

Aerostar to double commercial aviation MRO capacity with opening of new hangar

May 1, 2012 · 87 Views

Romanian aerospace company Aerostar S.A, reported that a new hangar it is building at its Bacau location, will double its commercial aviation MRO capacity. The hangar, which is now substantially complete, is having its utilities and equipment  installed and will be ready for opening within the next few weeks. The new 5000 m² hangar can accommodate four bays for regional/narrow-body aircraft. Currently Aerostar’s MRO activities are carried out in a 4-bay hangar, so the addition of the new facility brings total capacity to eight aircraft in over 10,000 m² of space.

WestJet selects Bombardier Q400 for new regional airline

May 1, 2012 · 69 Views

WestJet has selected Bombardier to supply aircraft for its new regional airline, expected to launch in the second half of 2013. The airline will fly the Bombardier Q400 NextGen to new cities, existing destinations not currently connected by WestJet, and will allow for schedule improvements on certain routes where a smaller aircraft can efficiently provide greater frequency. “We are very impressed with the Q400,” commented Gregg Saretsky, WestJet President and CEO. “Both ATR and Bombardier put forward excellent proposals and ultimately we believe the Bombardier Q400’s combination of range, speed and seat density is the best choice to meet the needs of the market and how we plan to operate the regional airline. We look forward to working with another great Canadian company.”

WestJet has signed a letter of intent to purchase 20 Q400s with the option to purchase a further 25 aircraft. The airline expects to announce its initial regional schedule using the Q400s later in 2012.

BAE Systems Regional Aircraft wins new customers for ‘Parts Plus’ programme

May 1, 2012 · 26 Views

BAE Systems Regional Aircraft’s new spares delivery service – ‘Parts Plus’ – which was designed, initially, to appeal to new operators of the BAe 146/Avro RJ regional jet – is now being rolled out to more established operators of the aircraft. The first major airline customer to sign up for the service is Airlink of South Africa, while another relatively new operator of the type, Aerovias DAP of Chile, has also signed up for the programme. Under the scheme, BAE Systems Regional Aircraft will offer fixed pricing until the end of 2013, with an availability guarantee on a steadily increasing range of spare parts. This has now been increased to cover over 2500 parts (from the initial 1300) with delivery of the stock guaranteed within 10 calendar day for 2012, reducing to five calendar days for 2013. These guarantees are underpinned by financial incentives. More parts will be added twice a year so that by the end of the second year the aim is to cover a minimum of 4000 parts and the parts list will continue to grow thereafter. In return for this service level, the customer has to agree to buy any requirements for the specified parts from Regional Aircraft.

BAE Systems extends BAe 146/Avro RJ rate-per-flight-hour coverage

May 1, 2012 · 65 Views

Building on its established track record of providing comprehensive rate-per-flying-hour programmes for its aircraft, BAE Systems Regional Aircraft announced an extension to the BAe 146/Avro RJ components covered with two new contracts secured with leading European airlines. BAE Systems has reached agreement with Swedish carrier Malmö Aviation to provide rate-per-flying-hour coverage for the Honeywell GTCP36-150M Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) that is fitted to its fleet of nine Avro RJ100s. Working with an established overhaul supplier, Regional Aircraft will provide Malmö with a guaranteed service level on the APUs for a fixed monthly cost over a three-year period. Building on this initial contract BAE Systems will seek to capture further APU rate-per-flying-hour business from other operators that use the Honeywell APU on their BAe 146/Avro RJ fleets.

In a separate development BAE Systems has also signed a contract with freight carrier TNT Airways S.A of Belgium for a rate-per-flying-hour agreement covering the flight deck windscreens on its fleet of 16 BAe 146QT (Quiet Trader) freighters.

Britsh Airways Engineering and VAS Aero announce strategic alliance

May 1, 2012 · 103 Views

VAS Aero Services, a global leader in aviation logistics and aftermarket services, and British Airways Engineering, a leading provider of Maintenance, Repair & Overhaul (MRO) services and part of the International Airlines Group (IAG), have announced a multi-million dollar, multi-year strategic aftermarket alliance.  The two-way partnership spans inventory warehousing and distribution, repair services and aircraft tear-down. British Airways will now have immediate and direct access to available VAS-controlled parts and materials not currently in the British Airways inventory. In exchange, British Airways will provide its excess inventory of serviceable parts for VAS to market across its worldwide aftermarket distribution network.  Furthermore, British Airways will become the preferred provider of MRO services to VAS, using the expertise in its workshops to overhaul components.

Under the terms of the agreement, VAS will move its European inventory into the British Airways London-Heathrow facility. By leveraging the British Airways world-class warehousing capability, VAS will enhance its global distribution and freight dispatch capability. VAS’s European sales and operations headquarters will also be relocated to the Heathrow facility.

WestJet reports first quarter net earnings of $68.3m

May 1, 2012 · 90 Views

WestJet reported record first quarter 2012 net earnings of $68.3m, up from net earnings of $48.2m reported in the first quarter of 2011. Total revenues increased 15.3% to $891.0m in the first quarter. WestJet’s operating cash flow per share was $1.87, an increase of 31% year over year. Based on the trailing twelve months, the airline achieved a return on invested capital of 10.8%, up from 10.1% reported last quarter.

US Airways announces pricing of $623m aircraft financing

May 1, 2012 · 111 Views

US Airways reported that it priced two offerings of enhanced equipment trust certificates (the “Certificates”) in the aggregate face amount of approximately $623m. The Company intends to use the proceeds from the offerings to refinance two Airbus aircraft currently owned by US Airways, to finance the Company’s purchase of twelve Airbus aircraft scheduled to be delivered from September 2012 to March 2013 and to use the balance, if any, for general corporate purposes. The $623m financing is comprised of approximately $380m of Class A certificates with a final expected distribution date of October 1, 2024, approximately $125m of Class B certificates with a final expected distribution date of October 1, 2019, and approximately $118m of Class C certificates with a final expected distribution date of October 1, 2015.  The offerings are expected to close on May 14, 2012, subject to customary closing conditions.

Astronics Corporation reports net income up 17.0%

May 1, 2012 · 228 Views

Astronics Corporation released that sales in the first quarter of 2012 were $65.1m, up $10.0 million, or 18.2%, from the prior year first quarter sales of $55.1 million. Aerospace sales, which represented approximately 95% of total first quarter sales, increased 23.5% over the prior year period to $62.0m. Test Systems sales decreased to $3.1m for the first quarter 2012 compared with last year’s first quarter of $4.9m. Net income in the first quarter of 2012 was $6.1m compared with net income of $5.2m in the same period of last year. Earnings per share for the first quarter of 2011 have been restated to reflect the impact of the one-for-ten Class B stock distribution to shareholders of record on August 16, 2011.

Amavco acquires Field Aviation from Hunting PLC

May 1, 2012 · 128 Views

Amavco, Inc., a privately held U.S. Company, announced completion of the acquisition of Field Aviation Company Inc. from Hunting, PLC, effective April 27, 2012. Established in 1947 in Calgary, Alberta, Field Aviation is an international Aircraft Modification and Parts Manufacturing company with locations in Toronto, Ontario and Calgary, Alberta as well as Seattle, Washington and Cincinnati, Ohio in the United States. The company’s products and services are organized around various aviation specialties, including, aircraft modification, parts manufacturing, interior modifications and upgrades, avionics service and installation as well as aircraft sales and leasing. Field Aviation operates from two production facilities totaling 150,000 sft². Field Aviation also has two offices in the United States, its corporate headquarters in Cincinnati, Ohio and its U.S. West sales office located in Seattle, Washington. Field Aviation employs over 260 highly skilled staff across its operations.