flydubai announced plan to recruit 600 pilots by 2016 to keep pace with its growing fleet and route network (Arabian Business, 18-May-2011). The airline placed an order for 50 Boeing 737-800s in 2008 with a total value of USD4 billion, with the last B737 expected by 2016. CEO Ghaith al Ghaith said the LCC was “possibly the world’s fastest growing start-up airline ever”. flydubai in Apr-2011 secured financing worth USD80 million at list prices with lessor MC Aviation Partners to cover the costs for equipment due in 2011. The LCC serves 37 destinations from its Dubai International Airport base.
flydubai to hire 600 pilots
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flydubai outlook improves, with reduced losses and faster rebound despite global uncertainty
As airlines worry about having passed their peaks and entering a downturn, flydubai, the LCC owned by the Dubai government, is on an upwards trajectory. This is very welcome after flydubai's sudden and sharp 1H2015 loss occurred as most other airlines were in party mode, buoyed by low fuel prices. flydubai significantly narrowed its 1H2016 loss despite double-digit growth. With the industry worrying about its health, flydubai appears to have caught the cold early and rebounded from it. An improvement in load factor, uplift in business traffic (19%) and reduction in expenses may show greater efficiency that can be maintained – the silver lining to the financial upset.
flydubai's 1H2016 loss narrowed to USD24.5 million from 1H2015's USD40 million, despite a 14.9% increase in flights. Losses per passenger decreased about nine percentage points faster. Unlike its bigger sister Emirates, also owned by the Dubai government but run separately, flydubai is primarily a point-to-point operator - so it depends on the health of Dubai.
Jet2.com: LCC airline's summer may be cooled by new Boeings, despite parent group's profit leap
Jet2.com is more summer-biased than almost any European airline, in spite of a capacity cut last summer. This reflects its strong leisure focus and its interdependence with the tour operator Jet2holidays. In the year to Mar-2016 Jet2holidays supplied 40% of the UK LCC's passengers, up from 17% in FY2013, since when it has been responsible for all of the airline's traffic growth.
Dart Group owns and runs both Jet2.com and Jet2holidays as the single business segment Leisure Travel (95% of group operating profit). The underlying operating profit of the Leisure Travel segment more than doubled for the year to Mar-2016, reaching the highest margin since FY2009, thanks to yield growth and increased sales of higher-end package holidays.
Strong advance sales insulate Jet2.com and Jet2holidays from the impact of Brexit in the short term. Nevertheless, their strong dependence on summer leisure demand exposes them to any volatility that may result from growing geopolitical and macroeconomic risks. Moreover, an order for 30 new Boeing 737-800s marks a departure from Jet2.com's strategy of buying and operating old aircraft that are close to being fully depreciated. This may increase the pressure on the airline to deploy its assets on a more year-round basis.