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Tuesday, April 20th, 2021

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United Airlines post greater-than-expected loss, blames increased fuel costs and capacity slide

United Airlines (United) has released its first-quarter financial results, revealing a greater-than-anticipated loss which the American carrier has attributed to a combination of rising fuel costs and a drop in capacity as airlines struggle to cope with the lack of demand due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Compared to the previous three months, fuel prices rose by approaching 30% and United expects a further 5% increase over the next quarter. Capacity fell by 54% compared to the first quarter 2019, though this is expected to ease to 45% in the second quarter. The carrier expects its adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization to turn positive later in 2021 despite business and long-haul international demand projected to remain at 70% below 2019 levels. United posted first-quarter total operating revenue of US$3.2 billion, down 66% versus first-quarter 2019 and an adjusted net loss of US$2.4 billion.

In a bid to improve profitability, United will be adding flights to Iceland, Croatia, and Greece which have reopened their borders to vaccinated travelers. It also expects to be profitable on a net basis once long-haul and business demand reaches 35% below 2019 figures and has forecast its second-quarter total unit revenue to fall 20% compared with Q2 2019. This would be below the 27% drop for the first quarter, while United also expects core cash flow to remain positive for the rest of 2021, having turned positive in March.

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Airbus A400M conducts helicopter refueling certification campaign

The Airbus A400M new generation airlifter has successfully conducted a major helicopter air-to-air refueling certification campaign, completing the majority of its development and certification objectives. Airbus Defence and Space aims to achieve full helicopter air-to-air refuelling certification later this year with the conclusion of all mandatory night operation trials. 

The flight tests, performed in coordination with the French Armament General Directorate (DGA), involved operations with two French Air Force H225M helicopters. The campaign took place in day and night conditions over the west coast of France at between 1,000 ft and 10,000 ft and flight speeds as low as 105 knots. During those flights, a total of 81 wet contacts and transfers of 6.5 tonnes of fuel were achieved, which included simultaneous refueling of two helicopters for the first time. The tests confirmed the positive results of the dry and wet contact operations conducted in 2019 and 2020. 

Helicopter air-to-air refueling is a unique military capability and key for Special Forces operations, involving aircraft with different flight profiles and sharing a very limited common flight envelope, requiring close formation flying patterns at low altitudes and night time conditions.

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Dubai Aerospace Enterprise orders 15 Boeing 737 MAX jets

Boeing has reported that aircraft lessor Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE) is growing its 737 MAX portfolio with an order for 15 737-8 jets. DAE had been investing in the 737 MAX by buying jets from existing customers and leasing them back to the carriers. The new order is DAE's first direct 737 MAX purchase from Boeing as it modernizes its portfolio for better economic and environmental performance.

Firoz Tarapore, Chief Executive Officer of DAE, said: "We are delighted to deepen our already strong relationship with Boeing. Including this order, we own and manage 162 Boeing aircraft. An increasing number of global aviation regulators are returning the MAX to the skies. We are confident in the success of these aircraft as domestic and regional air travel are seeing strong signs of recovery."

The new purchase is DAE's second investment in the 737 MAX in the past year. In the third quarter of 2020, the lessor signed an agreement with American Airlines to purchase and lease back 18 new 737-8 airplanes. Since the agreement, the lessor has delivered 17 of the jets to the U.S. carrier. DAE previously completed a similar purchase-leaseback deal with Brazilian carrier GOL for five 737-8s.

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Simon Maina joins ARGUS International as Director, Business Development

ARGUS International has welcomed veteran aviation sales professional, Simon Maina, as Director, Business Development. Maina brings nearly 30 years of aviation industry experience to his new role, including sales leadership positions with Boeing, Jeppesen, Flexjet, Adam Aircraft and Premier Aviation.

While at Jeppesen, Maina spent two years in SE Asia handling Part 121 national airlines and completing complex sales projects. Prior to Jeppesen, he was with Flexjet by Bombardier for four years as the Sales Director in the Rocky Mountain states, garnering Part 91(k) experience.

In his new role, Maina will oversee special projects and the expansion of product lines as ARGUS International continues to grow as industry leaders in aviation software, flight tracking, and market intelligence.

ACTSI completes G650ER 6C inspection

Aviation Concepts Technical Services (ACTSI), a business aviation Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) facility and parking service provider based in Subic Bay, Philippines, has supported a 6C inspection on a Gulfstream G650ER.

Inspections included 2A/2C, 3C,4C,6C along with removal and installation of main landing gear detailed inspections, CB 259 and ASC 090A hydraulic filter monitoring system activation, CB 26.

Acquired in 2018 by the Razon Group, ACTSI is dedicated to providing quality services for corporate jets in Asia-Pacific including jet parking, maintenance, repair, and overhaul services.

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The Liebherr Group achieves over €10 million in annual turnover

In 2020, the Liebherr Group achieved a turnover of €10,341 million. Compared to the previous year, the company posted a decline of €1,409 million, or 12 %. Following several successful years, and in the context of last year’s extraordinary conditions, this is considered satisfactory

Despite the modest slowdown of the global economy, Liebherr registered a strong volume of orders in the first quarter of 2020. Starting at the end of the first quarter, the coronavirus pandemic began to affect business activities in many markets. This also had an impact on the Group's sales revenues. Revenues in the Earthmoving, Material Handling Technology, Deep Foundation Machines, Mobile and Crawler Cranes, Tower Cranes, Concrete Technology and Mining product segments were 10.4 % lower than in the previous year at €6,848 million. Revenues outside construction and mining machines also fell. With the other product segments, including Maritime Cranes, Aerospace and Transportation Systems, Gear Technology and Automation Systems, Refrigeration and Freezing, as well as Components and Hotels.

Liebherr achieved a turnover of €3,493 million, a 15 % decrease compared to the previous year. There was a downturn in sales in the European Union, which has traditionally been the Group's strongest sales region. This was primarily due to declining sales in Germany and France; by contrast, business grew in Austria and Poland. Sales in non-EU countries as well as in North America also declined. Central and South America, Africa, and the Near and Middle East reported significantly lower turnover than the year before. Meanwhile, business was stable throughout the year in Asia and Oceania. This was thanks largely to strong demand from China and Australia.
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Tamar Jorssen
Vice President Sales & Business Development
Email: tamar.jorssen@avitrader.com
Phone: +1 (788) 213 8543
Tamar