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Thursday, August 4th, 2022

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Airbus pulls plug on entire remaining Qatar Airways A350 deal

With Qatar Airways refusing to take delivery of any further Airbus A350s until the European planemaker makes good on what the Gulf carrier calls premature surface damage, Airbus has finally had enough of the situation and has revoked the existing order for what stood at 19 aircraft as at the end of June, according to REUTERS news agency. The book value of these aircraft stands at US$7 billion.

This contract revocation comes six months after Airbus revoked the contract for 50 of the smaller A321neo jets which Qatar Airways also had on order. That revocation was seen as a retaliatory move by Airbus as a consequence of Qatar Airways refusing to take any further deliveries of the A350. Airbus has refused to acknowledge Qatar Airways' complaint, accusing the carrier of trying to delay delivery of the aircraft while the long-haul market struggles to recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Airbus has agreed there are cosmetic problems with the jet, but that contrary to Qatar Airways' claims, these problems have not affected the safety of the jet. The Gulf carrier grounded almost half its fleet of A350s after the Qatari regulator identified premature surface damage, for which the carrier is seeking US$1.4 billion in compensation. Part of the reason for refusing delivery was also because Qatar Airways was waiting for an explanation from Airbus over missing or damaged patches of anti-lightning mesh which had been exposed by peeling paint.

The dispute between the two companies may end up in a rare corporate trial in London next June, whereupon it will likely be decided whether this is a cosmetic issue, or as Qatar Airways claims, a design defect. (£1.00 = US$1.21 at time of publication).

Aergo Capital remarkets two B787-9 aircraft to go on lease to Air Premia

Aergo Capital (Aergo) has remarketed two B787-9 aircraft, bearing manufacturer serial numbers 63314 and 63315, to be delivered on operating lease to Air Premia. The transaction is being executed on behalf of UKEF, with the lease agreement signed on August 4, in Singapore.

Aergo Capital has acted as the asset manager and remarketing agent with the first aircraft (63314) being delivered in the coming weeks and the second aircraft (63315) scheduled to deliver early in 2023.

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Lufthansa Group posts operating profit of €393 million and adjusted free cash flow of €2.1 billion in second-quarter 2022

The Lufthansa Group generated an operating profit of €393 million in the second quarter. In the prior-year period, adjusted EBIT was still clearly negative at €-827 million. Adjusted EBIT margin rose accordingly to 4.6% (prior year: -25.8%). Net income increased significantly to €259 million (prior year: €-756 million).

The Group turned over €8.5 billion in the second quarter, almost three times as much as in the same period last year (previous year: €3.2 billion).

For the first half-year of 2022, the Group recorded an adjusted EBIT of €-198 million (prior year: €-1.9 billion). The adjusted EBIT margin amounted to -1.4% in the first half of the year (prior year: -32.5%). Sales increased significantly compared with the first six months of 2021 to €13.8 billion (prior year: €5.8 billion).

Over the course of the first half of the year, the number of bookings increased significantly. Due to this high level of new bookings and structural improvements in working capital management, a significantly positive adjusted free cash flow of €2.1 billion was generated in the second quarter (previous year: €382 million). In the first half of the year, the adjusted free cash flow amounted to €2.9 billion (prior year: €-571 million).

Net debt decreased accordingly to €6.4 billion as of June 30, 2022 (December 31, 2021: €9.0 billion).

At the end of June 2022, the company’s available liquidity amounted to €11.4 billion (December 31, 2021: €9.4 billion). Liquidity thereby remains well above the target corridor of 6 to €8 billion.

Spanish government approves sale of ITP Aero

Rolls-Royce has reported that the Spanish government has approved the sale of ITP Aero to a consortium of investors led by Bain Capital Private Equity. This follows the approval of all other relevant regulatory authorities. As a result, the completion of the transaction, at an enterprise value of approximately €1.8 billion, is expected in the coming weeks.

This sale, which was announced on September 27, 2021, completes Rolls-Royce's disposal programme announced on August 27, 2020, to raise proceeds of at least £2.0 billion. Upon completion, sale proceeds (excluding any cash retained by Rolls-Royce) of approximately €1.7 billion will be used to help rebuild the Rolls-Royce balance sheet, in support of the company's ambition to return to an investment grade credit profile in the medium term.

ITP Aero will remain a key strategic supplier and partner for Rolls-Royce across both Civil Aerospace and Defence programmes.

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HAECO ITM signs long-term contract with Silk Way West Airlines

HAECO ITM, a member of the HAECO Group, has signed an exclusive contract with Silk Way West Airlines to provide inventory technical management support to the airline’s Boeing 747-8F fleet. The new agreement will run until 2029.

Under the new agreement, Silk Way West Airlines will benefit from gaining access to HAECO ITM’s pool of components in Hong Kong with guaranteed service levels. The scope of work includes comprehensive component repair management and engineering services, pool access services including AOG support and component logistics and transportation.

AAR Mobility Systems awarded firm-fixed-price contract from U.S. Air Force to produce next-generation all aluminium cargo pallets

AAR CORP., a leading provider of aviation services to commercial and government operators, MROs, and OEMs, has been awarded a firm-fixed-price (FFP) requirements contract from the U.S. Air Force (USAF) to produce next-generation all aluminum cargo pallets.

The basic contract period of performance is for 18 months with eight 12-month options and one six-month option. The total contract value including option periods is US$173.5 million.

The next-generation all aluminum cargo pallets will be manufactured in Cadillac, Michigan, by AAR Mobility Systems, which specialises in the design and manufacture of mission-tailored configurations, integration/modification, re-fit of mobile shelter systems, internal slingable unit (ISU®) containers, specialty pallets and life-cycle support for governments, militaries and nonprofit organisations worldwide.

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Dirk Janzen appointed Vice President Passenger Sales, The Americas, for Lufthansa Group Airlines

Effective September 1, Dirk Janzen will assume the role of Vice President Sales, The Americas, Lufthansa Group Airlines, responsible for global market strategy, joint ventures, as well as passenger sales across North and South America. He succeeds Frank Naeve, who was in charge of The Americas region for the last three years until his recent appointment as Senior Vice President Global Markets & Stations for the Lufthansa Group. He will be based at the Lufthansa Group’s passenger airlines headquarters situated on Long Island in New York State, and will report to Naeve.

Janzen brings to his new position a wealth of aviation and international business experience, with 22 years working across sales, revenue management, distribution and ancillary/retail. Prior to assuming this role, he served as Vice President, Ancillary and Retail Management, leading a team of over one-hundred employees throughout Frankfurt, Zurich, Vienna and Brussels where he managed ancillary revenue, non-air partnerships and retail business for the Lufthansa Group airlines and Miles & More.

Flybe announces partnership with TrustFlight

Flybe has announced a partnership with TrustFlight and its suite of digital tools, including Tech Log, AMOS and Centrik, designed to enhance the airline’s safety, regulatory compliance, and continuing airworthiness.

The combination of TrustFlight’s industry expertise and cutting-edge digital technology will help Flybe to deliver an efficient, cost-effective, competitive service to its customers, ensuring the highest levels of safety, compliance, and airworthiness.

Flybe Chief Technical Officer, Ron Karger, noted: “We started working closely with TrustFlight earlier this year, a relationship that has helped us realise our vision for a new, highly reliable, and extremely compliant Flybe fleet, which will be made up entirely of De Havilland Canada Dash 8-400 (Q400) aircraft. We’re delighted to announce this new partnership and we look forward to an even stronger relationship with TrustFlight as we scale up our operation.”

As part of the powerful operational management solution, Centrik, TrustFlight’s EASA-endorsed Electronic Tech Log provides Flybe’s flight crew and engineering teams with remote, up-to-date access on the operational status, flight and maintenance history of their aircraft. The system places all relevant data in one easy-to-access portal, removing the need for paper processes, helping to eliminate transcription errors and deliver significant improvements in efficiency.

Flybe also uses TrustFlight’s continuing airworthiness management organisation (CAMO) function as well as its computer maintenance tracking system provided by Swiss-AS (AMOS) to ensure maximum reliability and regulatory compliance across the fleet. In addition, through Centrik, Flybe will also benefit from cloud-based, paperless access and control across every aspect of its operation, meaning all safety, risk, compliance, documents, training and more can be managed through a single source.
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Tamar Jorssen
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Email: tamar.jorssen@avitrader.com
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Tamar