London City Airport
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- United Kingdom
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- 1508m x 46m
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- Air France
All Nippon Airways
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
London City Airport serves the City of London and is a major business aviation facility in London. London City serves mainly the financial district in London and is located on a former Docklands site three miles from Canary Wharf and six miles from the City of London. The only airport actually within London, London City is the fifth-largest airport serving the city and its operations are restricted to STOL (Short Take Off and Landing) aircraft. The airport serves over 30 business centres across Europe and North America and a small number of leisure destinations in Europe. The airport is currently home to 10 airlines flying to 42 destinations across Europe, as well as a twice daily New York service. In 2012 3.2 million passengers were expected to travel through the airport.
Location of London City Airport, United Kingdom
Ground Handlers and Cargo Handlers servicing London City Airport
504 total articles
28 total articles
A couple of months after acquiring regional airline CityJet from Air France-KLM, new owner Intro Aviation faces a crucial decision about replacing CityJet's fleet of ageing BAE regional jets. This is likely to provide the key to turning around the heavily loss-making airline, whose main base is at London City. In spite of this being a high yield market from which to operate, and in spite of capacity cuts, the final years under Air France-KLM ownership were characterised by weakening unit revenues.
Decisions about rebuilding the network in a manner better suited to CityJet's market, and better able to bolster unit revenues, will depend to a great extent on its final choice of aircraft.
Moreover, the fleet choice should also have a considerable bearing on unit costs in the future. With three manufacturers in the running (Bombardier, Embraer and Sukhoi), the airline may shortly be able to provide a clearer view of how its negotiations are progressing.
Announcing his first set of annual results as Flybe CEO, Saad Hammad declared that the airline had been "reborn" in FY2014. It was certainly a year of great significance in Flybe's 35 year history. The company returned to profit after three years of losses and successfully raised GBP150 million in fresh equity, avoiding what was starting to look like a looming bankruptcy and buying more time to complete its restructuring.
The return to profit was built on network rationalisation and a seat capacity reduction in the core Flybe UK airline. This was accompanied by a significant headcount reduction which led to lower costs. Load factors were driven up by the capacity cut and lower fares, leading to higher revenues per seat and a slight increase in total revenues. Losses were also reduced at Flybe Finland, the joint venture with Finnair.
Importantly, too, Mr Hammad and the rest of the new management team seem to be bringing about a cultural change in Flybe, with a brand re-launch and his talk of 'Purple Power'.
In Homer's epic tale The Odyssey, it takes Odysseus 10 years to return home after the Trojan War. Although CEO Adam Scott's first attempt to start Odyssey Airlines began around nine years ago, he will he hoping for a smoother journey after the planned launch of all-business class flights between London City Airport and New York in 2016.
Odyssey's business model is based mainly on the convenience of London City and the deployment of the Bombardier CS100 in a 40 seat configuration. It will compete with British Airways' 32 seat A318 business class-only service from the same airport, in addition to multi-class services from BA, American, Virgin Atlantic, United and Delta from Heathrow.
History has not been kind to premium-only operators on the North Atlantic, whose share of global premium revenues is declining. In spite of this less than encouraging backdrop, Odyssey is not the only airline planning all-business class operations between Europe and North America. Following our recent analysis of Dreamjet's forthcoming launch between Paris and New York, in this second of two reports we look at Odyssey's prospects.
The North Atlantic and Europe are suffering a fall in their share of world premium traffic revenues. Moreover, the North Atlantic market has consolidated in recent years, to be dominated by the immunised joint ventures within the three global alliances (plus the new Delta-Virgin Atlantic JV).
So why are two new European all-business class transatlantic services currently planning to enter this market? It may be possible for a differentiated product, tapping into a defensible and large enough sector of this market, to succeed if its business plan is well devised and well executed. However, history is not attractive for a new entrant and previous attempts, before the global financial crisis, saw the rise and fall of Eos Airlines, MAXjet, Sliverjet and L'Avion.
In this first of two reports, we review the defunct all-business class transatlantic airlines and the all-business class services of existing network carriers. We also look at the business model proposed by Dreamjet, which plans to operate between Paris and New York this year. In part two, we will consider Odyssey Airlines, which plans to start up from London City to New York in 2016.
Gulf network carriers have re-written global aviation with profound implications. They ushered in long-haul to long-haul connections with cost and convenience efficiency while offering new aircraft and premium services. Qatar Airways, by joining the oneworld alliance, has gone further by changing assumptions that a global alliance would not accept a Gulf carrier as a member.
For its next trick, Qatar Airways is attempting to make work what most – but not all – have failed at: all premium services. Qatar on 14-May-2014 commenced a daily A319 link between Doha and London Heathrow with only 40 business class seats. This is focused on local traffic given limited connecting options – a change from its usual focus.
The smaller size of London-Doha compared to Dubai, which more carriers serve, is a tick in Qatar’s favour, as is its reputation and premium positioning. But unknowns remain. Is success based solely on profits? And where does Qatar’s dear friend British Airways sit with the service?
After withdrawing from London Gatwick Flybe has recently announced its re-entry into the London market. It is to launch seven routes from London Southend, to be operated by franchisee Stobart Air (formerly Air Arann) using ATR equipment. In an even more eye-catching move, it will also launch five new routes from London City Airport, operated by its own Q400 fleet.
Flybe's initial pricing of routes from both airports looks attractive, but each has relatively high airport charges. Although Stobart may offer lower costs at Southend than Flybe could achieve, it will need to ensure sufficient yields to offset the jump in charges.
This may be challenging. The Southend routes face little competition, but it is not a premium yield market. While London City attracts business travellers and good airline yields, Flybe's routes from there will face significant competition on a city pair basis (including LCC competitors). Flybe is still implementing an important cost reduction programme, but achieving good yields will be the key to success on its new London routes.
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