Posts tagged MAS

AirAsia in share swap with Malaysia Airlines?

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Here’s an interesting story: reports indicate that AirAsia is about to embark on a share-swap deal with its chief competitor and Malaysian national flag carrier, Malaysia Airlines (MAS). Sources have told Malaysian newspapers that the budget carrier will gain a 20% share of MAS under a partnership agreement.

The companies have supposedly been negotiating the deal for the past year. The sources also say the Malaysian government’s investment arm Khazanah Nasional will get a share in AirAsia and Tune Air Sdn Bhd will receive a stake in MAS. AirAsia’s CEO Tony Fernandes is also CEO of Tune Air, which itself owns a 26% share of AirAsia.

Neither Malaysia Airlines or Khazanah Nasional, its 70% shareholder, are commenting on the matter. It’s understood a formal partnership between the two rivals would enable them to compete more effectively in the global market, and bargain from a position of greater strength with airports and aircraft manufacturers.

AirAsia, which focuses on the budget end of the market, recorded a profit in Q1 of 2011 while Malaysia Airlines, which focuses on the traditional and higher end, recorded a loss and is undergoing a management restructure.

source & article: Channel NewsAsia

More aviation engineers needed to fulfill Malaysia’s MRO goals

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Aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) is earmarked as a Malaysian growth industry and has full government support under the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP). To achieve its stated vision of becoming RM193.3 billion (US$65 billion) industry by 2020 and making Malaysia a regional MRO hub, however, the industry needs to make big leaps in policy & procedure improvement, availability of skills, and build a spare parts infrastructure.

MAS Aerospace Engineering (MAE), a division of national carrier Malaysia Airlines (MAS), is the company best positioned to achieve the goal and seems to have a good understanding of improvement points. The company made RM2 billion ($663.8 million) in revenue in 2010, 40% from its parent company and 60% through third-party and joint venture services. It is the third-largest airframe MRO company in the world, and says 75% of the world’s top airlines are on its client list.

Business TImes reports MAE is currently in talks with potential joint venture partners in China, and recently opened a facility with partner GMR Group in Hyderabad, India, its first outside Malaysia. Asia-Pacific, China and India accounted for 23% of the global MRO market, or RM29.6 billion ($9.8 billion), the company said.

On the homefront, MAE said that to properly develop MRO leadership, Malaysia needed more licensed aviation engineers and more training centers to produce the engineering skills required. There is also a feeling among the country’s top aviation schools that aviation engineering isn’t being promoted effectively enough as a vocation, and that the industry needed greater public awareness of its economic importance before it could develop and keep up with increasing speed and complexity.

source & article: Business Times

Southeast Asia air travel news wrap: a big week

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A very interesting week the Southeast Asian air travel industry, with some big news coming out of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) meeting in Singapore. Some highlights were:

Malaysia Airlines (MAS) will join the Oneworld Alliance, joining a network that spans 900 destinations in over 146 countries. Members of the alliance align their various policies and procedures and adopt common specifications in service, engineering and maintenance, also reducing costs through parts-sharing and bulk buying. MAS’ entry, which was sponsored by Australian national carrier Qantas, saw the share price rise 1.4% to RM1.44, its first increase in three trading sessions. The Oneworld Alliance also includes British Airways, Cathay Pacific, American Airlines and Japan Airlines.

Singapore Airlines and Virgin Australia announced a long-term partnership, giving each access to dozens more routes in the Asian/Australian/Pacific region and enabling frequent fliers to earn and redeem points for each other’s flights. Two quirks of the agreement were: (1) it must still be approved by regulators before going ahead; and (2) it excludes the lucrative Australia-US routes long coveted by SIA, but from which it has been blocked by the Australian government.

Meanwhile, Singapore’s international gateway Changi Airport announced its passenger traffic would surpass 50 million a year by 2014. It’s already serving 42 million at present, and officials said it would have reached the 50 million mark even sooner if not for the global financial crisis a couple of years ago. Low cost carriers supply 22% of Changi’s numbers, while traffic to and from destinations in Southeast Asia and Northeast Asia grew 18%, compared to the airport’s total traffic growth of 13% in 2009.

sources: Bloomberg, The Star, IATA, Yahoo! Singapore, AirportBusiness.com

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