British Airways loses Appeal Court hearing to stop impending pilots’ strike

©British Airways

British Airways has lost an Appeal Court hearing to stop an impending pilots’ strike over a long-running pay dispute. The three senior judges refused to grant the airline a temporary injunction this Wednesday, having agreed that information provided to BA in a ballot notice was in accordance with the legislation which covers industrial action. This means that BALPA, the pilots’ union, can now give BA 14 days’ notice of when the strike will start, though it has yet to mention any specific dates. BA is attempting to block the strike as it is estimated it will cost the airline up Read more

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Ryanair profits tumble while growth plans also hit by further MAX delays

©Ryanair

Ryanair has reported a 21% year-on-year drop in post-tax profit at €243 million (US$270.36 million) for the three-month period up to June 30. While the carrier is not adjusting its end-of-year profit forecast of between €750 million and €950 million (US$832 million and US$1054 million), fares have fallen by 6% when compared to the same period last year and is a trend Ryanair believes will be ongoing for the rest of the summer, a period when the carrier is usually most profitable. The drop in fare prices has been put down to a combination of reduced pre-Brexit spending by UK Read more

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EU Commission gives go ahead for CityJet and Air Nostrum merger

CityJet operating for SAS Scandinavian Airlines ©AirTeamImages

The EU commission has issued a statement approving the merger of Dublin, Ireland-based CityJet DAC and Valencia, Spain-based Air Nostrum: “The European Commission has approved, under the EU Merger Regulation, the creation of a joint venture between Fortress Investment Group, of the U.S., and Air Investment Valencia, of Spain. It will combine the activities of CityJet of Ireland and of Air Nostrum of Spain.” The merger was first announced on July 17 when the two companies signed a Heads of Terms for the creation of a new holding company and the formation of what will become the largest pan-European airline Read more

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U.K.’s Cobham acquired by U.S. private equity group Advent for US$5 billion

Having made a name for itself by pioneering air-to-air refueling technology and its technology also found on Airbus jets as well as F-35 fighters, British company Cobham is to be acquired by American private equity group Advent International for £4 billion (US$5 billion). The offer equates to 165 pence in cash for each share in the aerospace company, a 50.3% premium on its average share price over the last three months. News of the deal saw shares jump early on to 165.95 pence. It was back in 2016 and 2017 that Cobham was rocked by a series of profit warnings Read more

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Kenya’s parliament votes to nationalise loss-making Kenya Airways

Kenya Airways ©AirTeamImages

On Tuesday, July 23, Kenya’s parliament voted in favour of nationalising the country’s flag-carrying airline in a bid to help it overcome problems with mounting debts. With a failed expansion program behind it and a slump in air travel which forced the carrier to restructure US$2 billion of debt in 2017, rather than allow Kenya Airways to take over the profitable running of Nairobi’s main airport, the country’s lawmakers proposed an alternative solution. Currently the carrier is 48.9% government-owned and with Air France-KLM holding a 7.8% stake. The Kenyan transport committee has proposed nationalisation that would see the struggling carrier Read more

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United Technologies’ profits exceed expectation through MAX grounding

With over 300 of the Boeing 737 MAX jets grounded worldwide, United Technologies has seen an increase in demand for its aircraft maintenance parts and services for airlines’ other aircraft and, as a consequence, has raised its full-year sales and profit forecast. It is one of the first companies to openly signal that it has made gains on the back of the 737 MAX problems, with shares rising as much as 2.7% in morning trade after the announcement. “There is impetus on the airlines and the (maintenance and repair) shops to ensure that the existing fleet is in a ready-to-fly Read more

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British Airways seeks high court injunction to stop threatened August pilots’ strike

©British Airways

British Airways (BA) is seeking a high court injunction to stop a potential pilots’ strike with a hearing due in the high court on Tuesday morning. The British Airline Pilots Association (BALPA) has rejected a pay offer for BA pilots of 11.5% set over three years, despite Unite and GMB trade unions acting for BA in other roles recommending its acceptance. 93% of the carrier’s 4,000 pilots voted in favor of strike action which has been penciled in to commence August 7, peak summer holiday period for travelers. Legally, BALPA must give BA at least two weeks’ notice of any Read more

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BA and Lufthansa cancel flights to Cairo, Egypt

©British Airways

British Airways announced on Saturday that it was canceling all flights to Cairo with immediate effect for a period of seven days “as a precaution to allow for further assessment.” The U.K.’s Foreign Office has warned travelers to Egypt that “There’s a heightened risk of terrorism against aviation. Additional security measures are in place for flights departing from Egypt to the U.K.” Though no further and more specific reasons were given for the flight cancelations, Lufthansa, which operates flights from Cairo to Munich and Frankfurt, said it was also suspending flights until Sunday, citing “an unclear security situation”. On Friday, Read more

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easyJet Q2 2019 results in line with expectations

©easyJet

easyJet has released its financial results for the first financial half to 31 March 2019.  Passenger numbers increased by 4.9 million while capacity increased by 14.5% principally due to annualizing of new operations in Berlin. Load factor decreased by 1.0 percentage points to 90.1% mainly as a result of building loads in Berlin in the first quarter. Total revenue increased by 7.3% to £2,343 million (H1 2018: £2,183 million). Total revenue per seat decreased by 6.3% to £50.71 (H1 2018: £54.10), with a decrease of 7.4% at constant currency. Headline cost per seat increased by 3.9% to £56.66 (H1 2018: Read more

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IATA urges European governments and ANSPs to make improvements to air traffic management

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The International Air Transport Association (IATA) called on European governments and air navigation service providers (ANSPs) to make urgent improvements to European air traffic management. The priority should be to cut carbon emissions and address the unnecessary costs and flight delays suffered by passengers from inefficient airspace routes and bottlenecks.  According to Eurocontrol, in June more than 210,000 flights, 20% of the total, were delayed. The average delay time was 17 minutes. The vast majority of the delays are from a lack of air traffic control capacity, driven by inadequate staffing, inflexible rostering, and an inability to react to disruptive Read more

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