- Passenger numbers: 2.6 million, +10.9% year-on-year;
- Cargo volume: 9147 tonnes, +16.9%. [more – original PR – Russian]
UTair Group pax numbers up 11% for four months to Apr-2013, cargo up 17%
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Ryanair's 117million pax in 2016 tops European airline groups. The first time an LCC topped rankings
For the first time ever in Europe, in 2016 a low cost airline carried more passengers than any other airline or airline group, as Ryanair's 117 million passengers pushed Lufthansa Group's 110 million into second place. Ryanair had beaten Lufthansa itself, but not the whole Lufthansa Group. IAG's first full year of including Aer Lingus helped it to take third place from Air France-KLM. Europe's number two LCC, easyJet, was ranked fifth.
The big five can be expanded into a big seven to include Turkish Airlines and the Aeroflot Group, although these two had contrasting growth rates in 2016. A chasing pack of middle sized airline groups includes three LCCs (Norwegian, Pegasus and Wizz Air) and three legacy airlines with varying challenges to establishing sustainable profitability (SAS, Air Berlin Group and Alitalia).
Most of the faster growing airline groups in the top 20 are LCCs and the main growth drivers for Europe's big three legacy groups are their LCC subsidiaries. Just outside the top 20 are some fast growing legacy airlines in Eastern Europe, demonstrating the potential there. Nevertheless, unless there is a big merger or acquisition, Ryanair looks set to remain at number one for some time.
UTair Aviation: Russia's number three airline returns to growth in 2016. Fleet upgrade needed
The UTair Aviation Group includes both a rotary wing (helicopter) division and a fixed wing (passenger airline) division. UTair's strategic goals for its passenger transportation division include maintaining third position and a market share of at least 10% in the domestic market; and a fleet modernisation programme through the purchase of new short and medium haul aircraft.
The passenger airline UTair Aviation achieved a 19% increase in passenger numbers in the first 11 months of 2016, after a period of capacity and traffic reduction and financial restructuring. The airline carried 5.5 million passengers in 2015, making it Russia's third biggest airline after Aeroflot and S7 Airlines, while the group carried 8.8 million passengers. UTair has orders to replace a significant proportion of its ageing fleet of aircraft (average age 19 years), but delivery dates are currently fluid.
Moscow Vnukovo is UTair's biggest airport, from where it serves mainly the domestic market. It is the biggest single airline by seats at Vnukovo, but it is outranked by the combined capacity of the Aeroflot Group's three airlines at the airport, Aeroflot, Pobeda and Rossiya. It also faces competition from Aeroflot and/or Pobeda on almost all of its biggest routes from Moscow.