Wednesday, February 27th, 2019


Boeing gets Embraer shareholder approval for JV

96.8 percent of Brazil’s Embraer shareholders have voted in favour of the sale of 80 percent of the company’s commercial plane division to The Boeing Company (Boeing). The sale will now only require global antitrust regulator approval. According to Reuters, Boeing will pay US$4.2 billion, and the 20:80 joint venture between Embraer and Boeing will concentrate on supplying passenger jets with up to 150 seats to commercial airlines.

The strategic move sees Boeing now able to challenge its main Rival, in this sector of the market after Airbus completed its purchase of a controlling stake in the Bombardier CSeries of aircraft, which also have less than 150 seats.

The shareholder decision comes on the back of last month’s decision by the Brazilian government, which holds a right of veto over important Embraer business decisions. Embraer has openly admitted that the company has been in need of crucial financial investment as it has been struggling while Boeing and Airbus squeeze out smaller rivals. Embraer executives said earlier this
year they would be able to wipe out the company’s current debt thanks to Boeing’s cash, giving them what they described as a fresh start.

“The potential operation with Boeing will save Embraer,” lawyers for the Brazilian planemaker said in July in a court filing as it battled an earlier challenge to the deal.

Principal opposition to the sale of Embraer’s commercial plane division have centered on the fact this will remove the profitable arm of the company, leaving the non-profitable defense and executive jet sectors vulnerable. However, part of the deal with Boeing will see the newly formed company, which is yet to be named, market Embraer’s new KC-390 military cargo jet. Embraer will retain ownership of the plane’s intellectual property but hopes Boeing will drum up orders from allies of the United States.

TP Aerospace

Qantas Launches Direct Flights from Melbourne to Queenstown

Qantas will launch new seasonal flights direct from Melbourne to Queenstown to meet the growing number of Australians seeking winter holidays in New Zealand over the peak ski season.

Between 21 June and 27 August 2019, Qantas will operate three services per week between Melbourne and Queenstown with a Boeing 737 aircraft, offering more than 10,000 seats on the route over the winter peak.

These new flights are in addition to the Qantas Group’s 33 existing Queenstown services available each week throughout winter, with Qantas’ flights operating from Sydney and Brisbane and Jetstar’s flights from Sydney, Melbourne and Gold Coast.

Brüssels Airlines names new Managing Director Operations

As of April 15th, Edi Wolfensberger will join the Management Board of Brussels Airlines in the role of Managing Director Operations. He will take over from Thibault Demoulin, who will remain within the company as full-time captain Airbus A330.

Edi Wolfensberger will together with CEO Christina Foerster and CFO Dieter Vranckx directly report to the SN Airholding Board of Directors.


Heathrow and airlines agree new deal to grow passenger numbers

Heathrow Airport has signed a landmark deal on airport charges worth hundreds of millions of pounds with airlines operating at the airport. Following detailed negotiations over the past several months, Heathrow and major airlines operating at the airport have agreed terms which should deliver significant passenger benefits in releasing funds to drive investment and growth. The CAA has supported the negotiation of the commercial arrangement and is expected to launch a public consultation on the solution in the coming weeks.

Under the terms of the agreement, Heathrow will establish a new growth incentive that will encourage airlines to increase passenger numbers at the airport ahead of expansion. Airlines at Heathrow currently operate with average load factors below the IATA global average. If airlines at
Heathrow reached global averages for filling aircraft there is an opportunity to reduce passenger charges by 10-20% against what they might otherwise be, in addition to helping Heathrow meet the Government’s affordability target for expansion. With more passengers on each existing flight, Heathrow would be able to spread the development costs of expansion across a larger passenger base – helping to keep airport charges close to 2016 levels in real terms throughout the
expansion project.

If the CAA gives final approval to the commercial arrangement, the current regulatory settlement would be extended until December 2021 – removing the need to negotiate an interim iH7 regulatory settlement. This would allow all parties – from the regulator to airlines and the airport – to focus their resources on agreeing the regulatory settlement that will be in place during the main expansion works from 2022 (subject to the airport being successful in its development consent order application).

Magellan Group

Victoria Police of Australia orders three AW139 helicopters

Leonardo has reported the choice for three AW139 intermediate twin engine helicopters as part of Victoria Police Air Wing’s fleet modernization effort, to provide enhanced airborne capabilities.

The helicopters will be supplied by StarFlight Victoria to carry out a range of law enforcement, patrol and surveillance, and maritime search and rescue missions from the Essendon Airport on behalf of the Victoria Police Air Wing. The AW139s will be delivered from Leonardo’s Vergiate final assembly line facility in Italy in late 2019 and will enter service in 2020 following dedicated mission customization.

Configured for policing operations across the State of Victoria, the new aircraft will feature a wide range of tailored equipment including, among others, advanced mission console, camera, wire cutter and rescue hoist.

GKN Aerospace obtains EASA STCs for ADS-B Out modification for Boeing 747 and 757

EASA has issued Supplemental Type Certificates (STC) to GKN Fokker Services for ADS-B Out modification for the Boeing 747-400 and 757-200 and 757-300 aircraft, including freighter versions.

Each STC can be used to install all compliant transponder types in combination with every compliant GPS source offering, a unique and valuable solution to operators with mixed configurations in their fleet.

Multiple GKN Fokker Services customers have already ordered the Boeing 747 and 757 ADS-B Out
modification enabling them to be prepared for both the FAA and EASA mandates in 2020. FAA validation of both EASA STCs will follow later this quarter.


Air Vanuatu signs firm order for four A220s

Air Vanuatu, the national flag carrier of the Pacific island nation of Vanuatu, has signed a firm order with Airbus for four A220s (two A220-100s and two A220-300s). Air Vanuatu’s first ever order with Airbus makes it the launch customer of the A220 in the Pacific region.

Based at Bauerfield International Airport in the capital Port Vila, Air Vanuatu operates to 26 domestic airports and internationally to Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and New Caledonia. It began services in 1987, and has played a vital role in establishing Vanuatu as a tourist and investment destination. Currently the airline operates a Boeing 737 and ATR 72 fleet.

ATSG Elects Rob Coretz to Board of Directors

Air Transport Services Group has elected Robert K. Coretz to its Board of Directors on February 20, 2019.

Coretz is a principal and founder of 10 Tanker Air Carrier, which engineers and modifies DC-10 aircraft for aerial firefighting and suppression purposes.

Coretz is also the former board chairman of Omni Air International, a U.S. based passenger airline that ATSG acquired in November 2018.


ST Engineering Receives Authorisation from CAAS to Test Fly its UAS Solution DroNet Beyond Visual Line of Sight

ST Engineering made further strides in developing advanced Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) solutions for applications in an urban environment when its Aerospace sector became the first in Singapore to receive authorisation from the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) to conduct Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) trials over the Lower Seletar reservoir. The BVLOS trial is for demonstrating ST Engineering’s latest UAS solution, DroNet.

Designed for autonomous operations in an urban environment, DroNet is an end-to-end solution that applies advanced unmanned technologies such as drones through a network system to carry out specific tasks or services.

By harnessing the power of networking, video analytics and data sharing, DroNet is able to provide solutions for various applications including perimeter security, asset inspection and lightweight deliveries.

Comtrade Group Launches Standalone Travel and Mobility Division ‘Voyego’

Comtrade Group, a software engineering services and solutions provider, has launched a dedicated travel and mobility division called ‘Voyego.’

The standalone entity, headquartered in Dublin and Berlin, has evolved from the company’s existing mobility and travel department, which has enjoyed 40% revenue growth over the last 12 months
through partnerships with industry leaders including Ryanair, AerLingus and Daimler.

Approximately 250 Comtrade employees will join the new Voyego team and will focus on helping airlines and ground mobility organisations to improve the passenger experience. Its innovative software solutions will also reduce the cost of payment processing and create additional
revenue streams.

Voyego will focus on delivering mobile apps, responsive airline websites and innovative payment solutions that enable airlines to deploy new methods of payments quickly. The division also enables
its aviation customers to generate ancillary revenue streams. For example, its Adnexa platform allows airlines to tailor and target advertising content for passengers through channels including boarding passes and in-flight entertainment.

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