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 Aerospace (commercial and business jets) and Rail transportation equipment, systems and services.
Bombardier Aerospace ranks as the world’s third largest civil aircraft manufacturer. 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;
- Aircraft services and training - aircraft parts, maintenance, comprehensive training, technical support and publications, and online services.
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Small orders, anonymous buyers and returning customers expanding deals were the running themes for the Bombardier CSeries at the 2014 Farnborough Airshow.
While Bombardier did not rack up headline orders like the larger manufacturers, it still managed to win commitments and firm orders for 63 CSeries aircraft.
There now appears to be sufficient oxygen in the prospects of meeting Bombardier's own target of 300 CSeries orders before the aircraft enters service.
Airbus and Boeing typically grab the headlines at the big airshows, but regional aircraft manufacturers had a particularly strong first day at the bi-annual Farnborough Airshow.
The smaller aircraft manufacturers – Embraer, Bombardier, Sukhoi, ATR, COMAC and Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation – collectively announced firm and tentative orders for nearly 130 jets and turboprops, as well as options for another 120 aircraft.
With all orders and options included, the deals are valued at more than USD7.8 billion.
WestJet’s official declaration that it intends to start operating widebody aircraft in late 2015 is not surprising given the airline’s commentary about acquiring twin-aisle jets has grown more robust throughout the past year.
However, within the span of two years WestJet is rapidly changing its business model: the introduction of both smaller 70-seat turboprops to compete in regional markets; and widebodies to go international, each adding new layers of complexity that requires absorption. But as with the shorter-haul regional market, WestJet has concluded that the opportunity in the long-haul space – nearly double the value of the transborder market – is too large to leave to its Air Canada competitor.
WestJet’s crystallising of its widebody ambitions caps off a raft of changes in the Canadian domestic market as the country’s incumbent airlines face potential pressure from upstart ultra low-cost carriers who believe Canada is ripe for the pay-for-frills model that exists in most other markets.
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.
Hawaiian Airlines expects solid unit revenue traction during 2Q2014 as it shifts some capacity from Asia back to the US mainland and perhaps sees some improvement in its long-haul network. It's long-haul network has been a weak performer for the airline during the last couple of years as currency shifts have hurt and it still waits for several new routes to mature.
The airline is now in a state of limbo as it aims to slow its previous rapid capacity growth in CY2014 while the investments made in developing its long-haul network should start to materialise slowly. The slowdown in growth is welcome, but challenges loom large for Hawaiian in ensuring all regions in its network make an overall positive contribution.
Hawaiian’s favourable performance in its North American and inter-island markets should continue to help the airline turn a sound top-line revenue performance; but growth in those maturing markets its limited, emphasising the importance of Hawaiian’s successful execution of is long-haul strategy.
Roughly a year ago in Apr-2013 Canada’s Porter Airlines declared bold plans for the next phase of its business, underpinned by a move to operate larger Bombardier CSeries jets to broaden its product reach to destinations in Western Canada and the US.
But a year later Porter finds itself in, arguably, self-imposed limbo as the necessary and controversial approvals to operate the CSeries from the airline’s main base and headquarters at Toronto Billy Bishop airport have been mired in politics, and for the moment remain frozen pending further study.
A decision to put off approving or denying Porter’s planned addition of the larger CSeries narrowbodies at the island airport and the necessary changes to support the carrier’s operation of the jets occurred just as non-refundable deposits on the aircraft were due to Bombardier.
All of the push and pull during the last year has resulted in two glaring questions – why did Porter base its future on a scheme rife with controversy, and does the carrier have a plan B?