Serbia’s Government plans to privatise Jat Airways by 06-May-2012 when parliamentary elections will take place, according to Balkans reports. The Government has reportedly agreed to sell a 50% stake in the national carrier to three Serbian businessmen: Miroslav Mišković (owner of the Delta Group), Miodrag Kostić (owner of the MK Group) and Miroslav Bogićević (owner of Farmakom). The three businessmen are expected to invest EUR25 million into the airline while the Government would invest the same amount. Seven of the airline’s existing aircraft would be used with three more to be purchased or leased. The Government plans for the arrangement to lead to the airline returning to profitability by 2015. 1000 employees are expected to be made redundant under the turnaround plan.
Serbia planning to privatise Jat Airways by May-2012
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LOT currently ranks behind LCCs Ryanair and Wizz Air by share of traffic in Poland, which offers superior traffic growth potential versus Europe as a whole. The airline aims to increase passenger numbers from 4.3 million in 2015 to 10 million in 2020, growing its fleet from 43 to 70 aircraft. LOT's expansion will focus on long haul, particularly North America and Asia, where it currently has only five routes and where competition is considerably lower than on short/medium haul. Initial plans include the launch of Warsaw-Seoul this winter and a return to Warsaw-New York Newark next summer.
According to data from LOT, its restructuring has left it with a fairly efficient cost base by legacy airline standards and this will be important in competing with LCCs (but there is still a cost gap with LCCs). LOT's growth will focus on long haul but will need short-haul European feed – and partnerships. Although LOT no longer appears to be considering leaving the Star Alliance, it remains excluded from American and Asian JVs. Further, those JVs preclude members from working with LOT. Partnership growth will be as critical as it will be challenging.
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Part 1 of CAPA's analysis of Vueling examined its capacity growth and profitability trends since its acquisition by IAG in 2013. Vueling's operating margin and return on invested capital are on a downward trend, hence the new initiative to reverse these trends.
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