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    Each week, CAPA – Centre for Aviation, produces informative, thought provoking and detailed market analysis of the aviation industry. With supporting data included in every analysis, CAPA provides unrivalled and unparalleled intelligence.

    US Big 3 airlines: Corporate travel holds up despite industrials’ lag

    Despite some weakness in the US industrial sector, the country’s three large global network airlines have reasonably positive outlooks for corporate demand in 3Q2019.

    Those conclusions follow a solid performance by American, Delta and United in corporate revenue growth during 2Q2019; however, there were some sequential declines in certain corporate indicators from 1Q2019.

    On an individual level, United is seeing an increase in first time travellers, while Delta believes strength in non-industrial sectors is offsetting headwinds in weaker industries. American is working to battle operational challenges, and ensure it maintains its corporate volumes.

    To read on, visit US Big 3 airlines: Corporate travel holds up despite industrials’ lag

    Brazilian aviation: scramble for Avianca Brazil’s slot allotments

    Slot allocation at airports worldwide is often a complex process, but the divvying up of Avianca Brazil’s slots in the wake of the airline’s demise has been particularly labyrinthine. An auction of the carrier’s assets was initially called off and then held, with LATAM Airlines Group and GOL emerging as the winners.

    But now it seems Brazil’s government has deemed that auction invalid. That could possibly benefit Brazil’s third largest airline, Azul, which refused to participate in the auction process. Azul has also tapped social media to make its case for slots at São Paulo Congonhas, a strategic airport for all airlines in Brazil.

    But the outcome of the drawn-out process remains anyone’s guess as Brazil’s domestic market becomes more concentrated after Avianca Brazil’s exit.

    To read on, visit Brazilian aviation: scramble for Avianca Brazil’s slot allotments

    Spring Airlines leads Chinese LCCs’ international expansion Part 2

    This is Part 2 of a two part CAPA review of Chinese LCC expansion internationally. Part 1 looked at the international expansion plans of China’s smaller LCCs, most of which are fully or partially owned by full service airline groups.

    This second part will focus on the role of Spring Airlines, China’s first major home grown LCC.

    See related report: Spring Airlines leads Chinese LCCs’ international expansion Part 1

    Independent Spring Airlines, the first and largest domestic LCC in China, is planning rapid international expansion with a focus on the 10 Southeast Asia/North Asia markets it already serves.

    Spring is also now considering the acquisition of A321neoXLRs, which would give it the range to fly deeper into Southeast Asia from north China, as well as potentially to open new routes to South Asia and Australia.

    To read on, visit Spring Airlines leads Chinese LCCs’ international expansion Part 2

    Belgrade airport: VINCI Airports the winners, challenges ahead

    While large, primary airports such as Vienna, Budapest and Prague are thought of as being the major gateways into Eastern and Southeast Europe, Belgrade’s Nikola Tesla Airport has been making its presence felt in the region, initially by way of a big increase in traffic numbers a few years ago.

    The Serbian government decided to privatise the airport and VINCI won the bidding contest, taking on the concession in Feb-2019 – having beaten off consortiums such as Flughafen Zürich/Eiffage/Meridiam; GMR Infrastructure/Terna; and Incheon International Airport Corporation/Yatirimlari ve Islatme/ VTB Capital Infrastructure.

    The operating concession came into effect this year. Now, as VINCI commits to a very large and costly infrastructure improvement – albeit partially supported by an EBRD loan – VINCI’s CEO is talking in terms of BEG being “the future hub” in Southeast Europe; an ambitious statement.

    The operator plans to invest more than EUR730 million in development of the airport over the period of the concession, to increase capacity to 15 million passengers per annum, according to VINCI Airports’ President Nicolas Notebaert.

    In 2015 CAPA identified Belgrade Airport’s potential in a report that suggested that the airport was “challenging the hub order in Central and Southeast Europe”. The report may have painted a slightly rosier picture than the reality has proved, and VINCI may have a tougher job on its hands than it once envisaged.

    To read on, visit Belgrade airport: VINCI Airports the winners, challenges ahead

    Spring Airlines leads Chinese LCCs’ international expansion Part 1

    This is Part 1 of a two part review of upcoming Chinese LCC international expansion, particularly in North and Southeast Asia. Part 2 will focus specifically on LCC market leader Spring Airlines.

    Chinese low cost airlines are about to expand their role in international markets and compete more aggressively. Foreign LCCs have until now dominated China’s fast growing international LCC market, currently accounting for nearly 75% of international LCC capacity in China. AirAsia/AirAsia X are the market leader, with a 28% share.

    Eight Chinese LCCs now operate international services but five have three or fewer international destinations. Spring Airlines is the market leader by a wide margin and now has more than one quarter of its seats (and more than one third of its ASKs) in the international market (see Part 2 of this report).

    While Spring is independent, most of China’s LCCs are part of full service airline groups with the order books and strategic desire to accelerate international LCC expansion. For example, China Eastern recently stated it plans to accelerate international expansion at its LCC subsidiary China United Airlines using China United’s new hub at the soon to be opened Beijing Daxing Airport.

    To read on, visit Spring Airlines leads Chinese LCCs’ international expansion Part 1

    Canada’s airline passenger rules: stakeholders voice opposition

    Canada’s recent implementation of new air passenger protection rules has followed a familiar pattern – high profile incidents of passengers becoming stranded spur calls for action; recommendations are made; consultations take place with industry stakeholders; and new rules become adopted.

    The first set of Canada’s new ‘Air Passenger Protection Regulations’ became effective in Jul-2019 and a lawsuit has been filed by numerous airlines arguing that the required payments under those rules violate international aviation treaties. Consumer groups have also expressed some disappointment that the new rules do not go far enough.

    Opponents of the new regulations warn the rules will ultimately drive airfares up, and although the courts have acknowledged that they have received the legal complaint, it could be some time before a decision is rendered in the case, which means that for now the status quo remains.

    To read on, visit Canada’s airline passenger rules: stakeholders voice opposition