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Bombardier is a global transportation company, headquartered in Montréal, Canada. It is present in more than 60 countries on five continents and is active in the manufacture of products, systems and the provision of services for the aviation (commercial and business jets) and rail transportation sectors. The division responsible for the company's aircraft manufacturing and related services is Bombardier Aerospace. The division is headquartered in Dorval, Quebec and ranks as the world’s third largest civil aircraft manufacturer, employing of 37,700 people. Its aircraft range includes:
- Business aircraft - Learjet, Challenger and Global aircraft families;
- Commercial aircraft - new CSeries program, CRJ Series and Q-Series aircraft families;
- Amphibious aircraft - Bombardier 415 and Bombardier 415 MP aircraft;
- Jet travel solutions - Flexjet;
- Specialised aircraft solutions - Bombardier aircraft modified for special missions;
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January, as befitting the two headed Roman God who gives his name to the month, is a time for reflection and expectation.
So Oriel, CAPA's partner in leading fleet data, has put commercial aircraft values under the spotlight. With the usual turbulence in the industry compounded by the multiple flow on effects of the oil price slump, 2015 looks likely to be another year where staying agile - and knowledgeable - will be essential.
This report covers the outlook for each of the main categories of aircraft: in-production narrowbodies; out-of-production narrowbodies; in-production widebodies; out-of-production widebodies; widebody freighters; regional jets; and turboprops - along with a global overview.
2015 is looming as a critical year for Bombardier and its new CSeries aircraft and it will have to face it without a key aircraft sales executive. Raymond Jones, the company’s senior vice VP of global sales, marketing and asset management for Bombardier Commercial Aircraft, has left the company.
According to Bombardier, Mr Jones departure was for “personal reasons”. A seasoned veteran, he worked for Bombardier for a decade before assuming the lead commercial aircraft sales role in Dec-2013, replacing Chet Fuller.
A successor has not been named. Bombardier’s commercial aircraft sales executives will report to Bombardier Aerospace president Mike Arcamone in the interim.
Porter Airlines state of limbo persists as it awaits a decision on its controversial expansion plans
Canada’s Porter Airlines marked its eight year anniversary in late 2014 against the backdrop of uncertainty over its strategic direction and attempts to sell and lease back the terminal it owns at its largest base Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport as a means to fund its growth plans.
Porter necessarily marked its eighth year of operations in partial limbo, as outside forces remained unpredictable. The airline is still awaiting a decision by the city of Toronto to operate Bombardier CSeries jets from Billy Bishop, which is a politically charged proposal that has drawn criticism and is in the midst of further study.
The airline continues to maintain an optimistic outlook, concluding it has options to broaden its base outside Toronto as its current business remains viable. But it seems Porter embarks on 2015 with the same degree of uncertainty about its future as in the beginning of 2014, a scenario that is not sustainable over the long term.
RwandAir is planning major expansion over the next three years which will see the small East African carrier add widebody aircraft and launch long-haul services. RwandAir is also pursuing further expansion of its regional network in 2015 as it expands its single-aisle fleet from seven to nine aircraft, building up feed ahead of the anticipated launch of 787 operations in 2017.
The Rwanda government is supporting the ambitious expansion and sees a growing hub role for the capital Kigali. Transit passengers already accounts for about 40% of RwandAir’s traffic and the airline sees an opportunity to further boost sixth freedom traffic as well as potentially add more fifth freedom routes.
RwandAir has already expanded rapidly over the last 18 months as it has replaced 737-500s with 737-700s and Dash 8-200s with Dash 8-Q400s. The carrier, which now operates a modern fleet with an average age of only four years, earlier replaced CRJ200s with CRJ900s and added 737-800s.
Alaska Air Group has no trepidation over growing capacity during 2015 by roughly 8% as its top line revenue and margins have continued to expand during a raft of new market introductions during the last four years.
Most of the expansion has been margin accretive; but at the same time Alaska Airlines is not backing away from exiting underperforming markets, and plans to cut several markets in early 2015 along with reducing capacity on other routes.
Obviously part of its strategy during the short term is managing increased competition from Delta Air Lines at its largest hub in Seattle. But with seven quarters of the competitive pressure under its belt, Alaska’s overall financial health remains robust, evidenced by its pledge to grow shareholder returns year-over-year in 2015.
Myanmar start-up FMI Air is aiming to launch scheduled services by the end of 2014 using 50-seat CRJ200 regional jets based at the capital Nay Pyi Taw. FMI will become the first airline to establish a hub at Nay Pyi Taw, which has an underutilised modern international airport that opened in 2011.
FMI will enter an extremely crowded domestic market which is already served by eight airlines. But it sees an opportunity to differentiate by operating jets rather than turboprops, providing a higher level of service, partnering with foreign carriers and becoming the first domestic operator in Myanmar with IOSA certification.
FMI Air will initially operate on the Yangon-Nay Pyi Taw route, which it has served over the last two years using wet leased aircraft. But it plans quickly to establish a hub at Nay Pyi Taw with several domestic routes in the first phase and eventually regional international routes.