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Friday, June 5th, 2020

ATSG to lease twelve additional 767 freighters to Amazon

Air Transport Services Group (ATSG), a provider of medium wide-body aircraft leasing, air transportation and related services, has signed an agreement to lease twelve additional Boeing 767-300 converted freighter aircraft to Amazon. One of the twelve aircraft was delivered on May 29, 2020 and the remaining eleven will be delivered in 2021. All twelve will be leased to Amazon for ten years, with options for Amazon to extend the leases for three additional years.

Cargo Aircraft Management (CAM), ATSG’s aircraft leasing subsidiary, currently leases twenty-seven Boeing 767 aircraft to Amazon, including six leased during 2019. In December 2018, Amazon committed to lease those six plus an additional four 767s from CAM by the end of 2020. This latest agreement increases the projected number of 767s CAM will have leased to Amazon to 31 by the end of 2020 and to 42 by the end of 2021.

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Delta will block middle-seat selection, cap cabin seating through September 30

Delta is continuing to block the selection of middle seats and capping seating in every cabin through September 30, 2020.

“Reducing the overall number of customers on every aircraft across the fleet is one of the most important steps we can take to ensure a safe experience for our customers and people,” said Chief Customer Experience Officer Bill Lentsch. “Delta is offering the highest standards in safety and cleanliness so we’re ready for customers when they’re ready to fly again.”

Through September 30, Delta will ensure more space for customers on all aircraft by capping seating at 50% in First Class; 60% in Main Cabin, Delta Comfort+, and Delta Premium Select; and 75% in Delta One to reduce the total number of customers on board.

Through September 30, all middle seats will continue to be shown as unavailable or not assignable when selecting seats via the Fly Delta app or online. Delta will also continue to block the selection of some aisle seats in aircraft with 2x2 seating configurations.

Starting June 10 the carrier is resuming automatic, advance Medallion Complimentary Upgrades to Delta One (domestic U.S.), First Class and Delta Comfort+ – which were previously being managed at the gate – subject to availability and as permitted by the seat caps.

On routes where increasing customer demand is driving flight loads closer to its caps, Delta will look for opportunities to upsize to a larger aircraft type or add more flying.

Airbus appoints Anand Stanley as President Airbus Asia-Pacific

Airbus has named Anand Stanley as President Airbus Asia-Pacific, effective July 1, 2020. Based in Singapore, he will lead the strategy and future positioning of Airbus and its divisions across the region. In this role Stanley will have responsibility for commercial aircraft sales and customer affairs, group-wide government affairs, industrial and joint venture partnerships, as well as the local operations at Airbus sites across the region.

Stanley will report to Christian Scherer, Airbus Chief Commercial Officer and Head of International, and will work closely with the Heads of the region for the Airbus Helicopters and Defence and Space divisions, who are co-located at the company’s Asia-Pacific headquarters in Singapore. He joined Airbus in 2018 as President and Managing Director of Airbus India, where he has overseen the Airbus business development and advanced the company’s position with key stakeholders, including customers, government agencies and industry partners.

Prior to joining Airbus, Stanley held senior positions in the civil aerospace, defence and helicopter markets, as well as in strategic management and M&A planning, having worked with the Linde Group, UTC, Pratt & Whitney, Lockheed Martin and Sikorsky. Over his career he has worked extensively internationally, with more than two decades of involvement in Asia and the Pacific region.

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After almost 32 years of membership Lufthansa flies out of DAX

After the crash in the corona-crisis Lufthansa, the DAX founding member, loses its place in the first German stock exchange league. Germany's largest airline is relegated to the MDAX of mid-cap companies as of June 22. Its successor comes from the real estate industry.

This was announced June 4, by Deutsche Börse during the regular review of its share indices. Lufthansa will be replaced in the German share index by the Berlin real estate group Deutsche Wohnen.

Stock exchange turnover (trading volume) and stock exchange value (market capitalisation) of a company are decisive for membership of the 30 DAX groups. The Lufthansa share price had collapsed in the wake of the corona-crisis. For this reason, the airline now has to vacate its place in the DAX after almost exactly 32 years of uninterrupted membership.

Finnair releases traffic figures for May 2020

Although the COVID-19 pandemic impact was still clearly visible in the May traffic figures, Finnair reported that the number of passengers increased and cargo-only flights more than doubled from April 2020.

In May, Finnair carried 26,700 passengers, which is 97.9% less than in the corresponding period of 2019 but 65.0% more than in April 2020. The overall capacity decreased in May by 97.7% year-on-year, while Finnair's traffic decreased by 99.1%. The passenger load factor decreased by 49.9% points to 29.9%.

Available scheduled cargo ton kilometers decreased by 99.6% year-on-year and revenue scheduled cargo ton kilometers decreased by 99.7%, both due to the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on scheduled flights. However, cargo related available ton kilometers decreased by 76.3% and revenue ton kilometers decreased by 68.5% and they included also the cargo-only flights operated primarily between Asia and Europe.

Finnair operated 263 one-way cargo-only flights in May (112.1% more than in April 2020), the total cargo tons were up by 127.5% from April 2020 and the cargo load factor was clearly higher than in the corresponding period of 2019.

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GECAS delivers prototype for 777-300ERSF passenger-to-freighter conversion

GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS) has delivered a Boeing 777-300ER, MSN 32789, to Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) for the prototype passenger-to-freighter conversion for the “Big Twin” program announced last October.

Ferrying from Dubai, the aircraft arrived in Tel Aviv on June 4, where it will undergo an extensive conversion at IAI’s facility, including the addition of the main deck cargo door, freighter lining, window plugs, a modified crew compartment, a reinforced fuselage a 9G rigid cargo barrier and more.

Dubbed “The Big Twin,” the 777-300ERSF will be the largest ever twin-engine freighter. As launch customer and co-founder of the program, GECAS has committed fifteen firm orders and has fifteen additional options for the type.

Setting a new benchmark for cargo operators, The Big Twin will be powered by GE90 engines — the world’s most powerful in-service engine — giving the 777-300ERSF 21% lower fuel burn per tonne than the 747-400F. Complimenting the 777-200LRF, the 777-300ERSF shares extensive commonality with the smaller twin production freighter.

JetHQ adds Business Development Manager

JetHQ is expanding its team of aircraft professionals with the addition of an experienced aircraft transactions specialist. The aircraft transaction and brokerage company announced that Josh Tremain has joined as its Manager of Contracts and Business Development.

Tremain comes to the company with more than 12 years of aviation experience as an Escrow Agent with Insured Aircraft Title Service based in metro Oklahoma City. He also serves as a Unit Training Manager for the Oklahoma Air National Guard on a part-time basis.

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PIA crash – pilot ignored air traffic control

Pakistan International Airlines has been told by the country’s aviation authorities that immediately prior to the crash of its Airbus A320 in Karachi on May 22, the passenger plane’s pilot had ignored warnings from air traffic control that its descent was too steep and too fast, a spokesperson for the flag-carrying carrier confirmed.

The plane crashed in the Modal Colony area of the capital city after a failed first landing attempt and after the pilot had reported the loss of both engines. 97 of the 99 passengers and crew on board were killed, along with one person in the ground.

It is believed that on the first failed landing the plane had scraped both engines on the runway during an unstable approach. The pilot had been warned twice by an approach controller to abort his approach, which he subsequently ignored. According to the controller, the approach was too steep, and the planes speed was above the runway threshold. The pilot had been advised that its altitude was too high when approximately 100km from the airport, though the pilot advised that he was comfortable for the descent.

The plane’s cockpit voice recorder and flight data box are currently being decoded by French air accident agency BEA, while Ghulam Sarwar Khan, Pakistan’s Aviation Minister, has advised that an initial report on the crash will be presented to parliament on June 22.
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