TransAsia Airways and ATR announced (11-Jul-2012) the signature of a contract for eight firm ATR 72-600s, plus an option for one additional ATR 72-600. The deal, including the option, is valued at over USD210 million. Deliveries of these new ATR -600s will start in 2014 and extend through 2017. With the purchase of these aircraft, TransAsia Airways will progressively replace its current fleet of nine ATR 72-500s operating in their domestic network with the newest ATR -600 series aircraft developments. The ATR 72-600s will be configured with 72 seats. [more - original PR]
TransAsia Airways orders eight firm ATR 72-600s
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Malaysia Airlines' Firefly Part 2: overcapacity at Kuala Lumpur Subang leads to restructuring
Overcapacity at Kuala Lumpur Subang Airport has forced the Malaysia Airlines Group to restructure its regional subsidiary Firefly. The airline has cut its fleet and implemented a new reduced schedule in hopes of improving yields and load factors.
Closer integration with Malaysia Airlines is being pursued, resulting in codeshares, frequent flier tie-ups and potentially a rebranding. Firefly remains an important component of the Malaysia Airlines Group, which also has restructured over the last two years, but a smaller operation is required to restore profitability in an extremely challenging marketplace.
The Subang market is relatively limited in size with only six sizeable domestic routes from Subang, all of which are now suffering from overcapacity due to aggressive and rapid expansion from Lion Group's Malaysian affiliate Malindo Air. The irrational dogfight that has emerged between Malindo and Firefly at Subang is a potential precursor of a bigger looming battle at much larger Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) between Malindo and the Malaysia Airlines Group.
Malaysia Airlines subsidiary Firefly reduces ATR fleet as competition with Malindo intensifies
Malaysia Airlines regional subsidiary Firefly has cut its fleet by six aircraft and slashed domestic capacity at its Kuala Lumpur Subang Airport base by approximately 40% as part of a turnaround attempt. Firefly now operates only 12 ATR 72 turboprops, down from 18 aircraft a few months ago.
Firefly has been significantly impacted by extremely aggressive expansion at Lion Group’s Malaysian JV, Malindo Air. Malindo has quickly expanded its Subang operation since it was launched in 2013 and now has 16 ATR 72s, all of which are based at Subang.
Malindo has injected new competition across all of Firefly’s previously exclusive domestic routes from Subang. While Malindo has been able to stimulate some demand, yields have plummeted and load factors are very low.