Malindo Air plans more rapid expansion in 2017 as it rebrands, and closes in on Malaysia Airlines

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Malaysia's Malindo Air is poised to have a momentous year in 2017, with more rapid expansion and a highly anticipated rebranding. Malindo plans to adopt the Batik Malaysia brand in early 2017, positioning it alongside Indonesia-based Batik Air as the two full service airlines in the Lion Group.

Malindo has been one of Asia's fastest-growing airlines since it launched services in Mar-2013. It recently reached the 40-aircraft milestone, after adding an astonishing 13 aircraft in just six months. Malindo plans to end 2016 with a fleet of 42 and take at least 10 additional aircraft in 2017.

The focus in 2017 will mainly be on adding capacity to existing destinations, improving connectivity as it looks to drive more transit and interline traffic. However new routes to Australia, China and Saudi Arabia are planned in early 2017, followed by potential new routes to Japan, Korea and Pakistan later in the year - leveraging the improved range of the 737 MAX.

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