Your weekly travel and aviation Quote-a

    The Blue Swan Daily brings you a roundup of the most thought-provoking and interesting comments from those industry leaders in the know.

    Air New Zealand outgoing CEO Christopher Luxon on the company’s FY2019 result:

    The NZD374 million (USD239 million) in earnings before taxation “reflects a significant fuel price headwind”, temporary impacts of “the global Rolls-Royce engine issues on some of our operational costs and as we observed in the second half of the financial year, slowing demand growth”. Mr Luxon noted the company is “uniquely positioned to observe changing demand trends due to our forward bookings profile” and while the carrier has “not seen any further downward shift, we are taking the necessary steps to adjust our business”. 

    AirAsia X Group CEO Nadda Buranasiri reported (22-Aug-2019) the company expects to take delivery of one A330neo aircraft from Airbus and embark on an “aggressive fleet substitution plan” in 2H2019:

    The plan will be posed to further drive up yields by “swapping our existing A330ceo with the newer more fuel efficient A330neo, which provides approximately 11% additional fuel savings and coupled with more competitive lease rates”. Mr Buranasiri added “in the face of dampening global economic backdrop, we remain confident on the future prospects of the company as the wider AirAsia Group continues to advance in terms of digital transformation”. 

    AirAsia X Malaysia CEO Benyamin Ismail:

    “Since last year AirAsia X has begun to move away from single route markets, except for Honolulu, which has been performing well since its commencement”, adding, “with the termination of Auckland in the previous quarter, we now have on hand a clean slate to fine tune our network in efforts to advance yields in our core established markets”. Mr Ismail said “with our network rationalisation undertaken over the past [two] quarters we are now poised to focus our growth and presence in our key markets in Northern Asia, India and Australia as we look towards ramping up capacity and driving up utilisation” in 2H2019. 

    British Airways marked its 100th anniversary on 25-Aug-2019, with British Airways CEO Alex Cruz commenting:

    “From that first customer who flew from Hounslow Heath to Paris on 25-Aug-1919 in a single-engine De Havilland DH4A to the millions who choose to fly with us every year on more than 800 flights a day to 200 destinations around the globe – we thank them all. Our customers truly enable us to bring Britain to the world and the world to Britain and we look forward to serving them for the next 100 years”.

    Kosice Barca Airport chair and CEO Michael Tmej cited the grounding of Boeing 737 MAX as the reason for Ryanair’s decision to suspend London Southend-Košice service from winter 2019/2020:

    “The so far unresolved problem with the Boeing 737 MAX aeroplanes and the strong competitive struggle between the low cost airlines in the European sky have hit us once again… The aviation industry is an extremely turbulent environment and regional airports are the first ones exposed to any kind of crisis”. 

    Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker stated Qatar Airways has “no concern on the viability” of Cathay Pacific and would consider increasing its 9.6% stake in the airline: 

    “Cathay Pacific is there to stay, and to expand and to serve the people of both Hong Kong and China, as Hong Kong is an integral part of mainland China”.

    Virgin Australia Group CEO and managing director Paul Scurrah stated (28-Aug-2019) the group’s FY2019 results were disappointing and underscored the need for change:

    The results “show that we must improve our financial performance” and while the company has grown a “strong loyal customer base” the group “need to make changes to cost to ensure we see financial benefit from the growth in our business”. Mr Scurrah stated: “There are just some strategic decisions that have been made to help with the short term. However, there’s more work we need to do on the long term focus and positioning of the business”.