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ESTABLISHED IN 1968. FORMED AS "SAHAKOL AIR" FOR OIL/NATURAL GAS EXPLORATION SERVICES. SCHEDULED & CHARTER, DOMESTIC AND REGIONAL, PASSENGER & CARGO, JET AIRPLANE SERVICES.
99 MU14, VIBHAVADIRANGSIT ROAD
CHOM PHON, CHATUCHAK
BANGKOK 10900, THAILAND
THAILAND (KINGDOM OF THAILAND) COVERS AN AREA OF 513,115 SQ KM, ITS POPULATION IS 59 MILLION, ITS CAPITAL CITY IS BANGKOK, AND ITS OFFICIAL LANGUAGE IS THAI.
APRIL 2000: MAJOR THAI REGIONAL AIRLINE WITH OPERATIONS TO CAMBODIA AND SINGAPORE.
BUILT AND OWNS AIRPORT ON SAMUI ISLAND, AND HAS DAILY 16 ROUND TRIPS.
HUB: SUKHOTHAI (THS).
SITA: BKKTOPG. BKKOVPG.
PLANS 2 ORDERS 717-200'S, PEMBROKE (PEB) LEASED.
JULY 2000: BANGKOK TO SUKOTHAI TO SIEM REAP & BANGKOK TO SAMUI TO KRABI, + PHNOM PENH TO PATTAYA TO SAMUI (4X-WEEKLY).
AUGUST 2000: PLANS +12 ATR 72'S OVER NEXT 3 YEARS. +2 ORDERS (FEBRUARY 2003) 717-200 PEMBROKE (PEB) LEASED.
SEPTEMBER 2000: JOINT VENTURE (JV) WITH CAMBODIAN GOVERNMENT TO FORM 2ND FLAG CARRIER NAMED SIEM REAP AIRWAYS (SRA), NAMED AFTER THE CITY, WHERE IT WILL BE BASED, AND START OPERATIONS IN JUNE 2001.
OCTOBER 2000: 6 ORDERS (JUNE 2001) ATR 72-500 FOR DOMESTIC & NEW ROUTES TO LAOS, CAMBODIA, AND MYANMAR. NEW LIVERY, FEATURES PALM TREES, AND TROPICAL FISH.
NOVEMBER 2000: SIEM REAP TO PHNOM PENH (DAILY).
717-23S DELIVERY (1ST 717 IN REGION, SERVICES TO PHNOM PENH AND SIEM REAP). NEXT 717-200 IN MAY 2001 WILL BE PAINTED IN AN ANGKOR TEMPLE, COLOR SCHEME.
MAY 2001: MAIN BASE: BANGKOK INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT.
HUB: SUKHOTHAI AIRPORT.
1 717-23S, PEMBROKE (PEB) LEASED (55067, HS-PGO) DELIVERY (HAS NEW LIVERY OF GOLD PAGODAS AND IMAGES OF BUDDHA, NAMED "ANGKOR"). 1 ATR 72-202 (477, HS-PGF) LEASED TO SIEM REAP AIRWAYS (SRA).
JULY 2001: CASH-RICH BANGKOK AIRWAYS (PGB) WILL FUND CONSTRUCTION OF AN AIRPORT IN THAILAND'S TRAT PROVINCE, IN 4TH QUARTER 2001, FOR COMPLETION BY FEBRUARY 2003.
WILL THEN OPERATE FLIGHTS FROM SUKOTHAI, AND THE POPULAR HOLIDAY RESORT OF SAMUI ISLAND, WHICH IT ALSO OWNS.
1 ATR 72-212A (670, HS-PGL "PHA NGAN") DELIVERY.
AUGUST 2001: IN OCTOBER 2001, TO HO CHI MINH CITY. OK FOR SERVICE TO KO SAMUI, A RENOWNED RESORT ISLAND, FAVORED BY FOREIGN TOURISTS (717).
NOVEMBER 2001: TO LUANG PRABANG, VIA SUKHOTHAI (ATR 72, 4/WEEK).
PLANS TO OPEN NEW AIRPORT IN TRAT BY NOVEMBER 2002, TO CREATE A ROUTING NETWORK IN SOUTH THAILAND, AND INVESTS $6.7 MILLION IN NEW AIRPORT FACILITIES.
PROJECTS +$2.3 MILLION FOR 2001.
POSSIBLE ADDITIONAL 717'S FOR NEW SERVICES TO CHINA. ATR 72-202 (477) RETURNED TO ATR.
DECEMBER 2001: 1 ATR 72-212A (680, HS-PGK "APSARA") OPERATES FOR SIEM REAP AIRWAYS (SRA).
APRIL 2002: (http://www.bangkokair.com). SITA: BKKTOPG.
MAIN BASE: BANGKOK INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (BKK).
HUB: SUKHOTHAI AIRPORT (THS).
TO SUKHOTHAI - XI'AN (ATR 72, 4/WEEK), IN PARTNERSHIP WITH CHINA NORTHWEST (CNW).
July 2002: 3 orders (December 2003) ATR 72-500's. 1 ATR 72-212A (692, HS-PGG "CHANG"), delivery.
October 2002: 2 717-200's (55074, HS-PGR "Luang Prabang;" 55081, HS-PGQ "Sukhothai"), ex-(TWA), Boeing Capital leased.
To Samui, Phuket, Chiang Mai, Xian, and Phnom Penh.
December 2002: ATR 72-500 (700, HS-PGF) delivery.
January 2003: 2002 = +THB 150 million: 1.24 million passengers (PAX). Projects 2003 = 1.65 million PAX.
ATR72-202 (373) returned to ATR.
February 2003: ATR 72-210 (367) returned to ATR. ATR 72-500 (704, HS-PGM "Tao"), delivery.
March 2003: Bangkok - Trat (2/day).
(http://www.bangkokair.com). SITA Code: BKKRRPG.
July 2003: 655 employees. SITA: BKKRRPG.
August 2003: Angel Air (ANE) has asked Bangkok Airways (PGB) to take over its assets and operations. The offer by Somchai Bencharongkul, (ANE) owner and (CEO), to Prasert Prasarttong-Osoth, (PGB) President & (CEO), signals Somchai's desire to exit the airline that has run up debts exceeding THB 100 million/$2.38 million. Somchai has offered (ANE) free of charge, but on the understanding that (PGB) would also take on (ANE)'s debt. However, Prasert, reportedly has shown no interest in the offer - which is also being advocated by Pichet Sathirachawal, Deputy Transport Minister - because he sees the (ANE) operation as not commercially viable.
ATR 72-212A (710, HS-PGA "KUT") delivery.
September 2003: Makes offer to take a 10% stake in new low-cost airline being planned by Thai International (TII).
Bangkok - Guilin (717, 2/week). Plans to add service to Hangzhou, Nanjin, and Shenzhen.
3 orders (February 2005) 737-800's, 189Y, and 2 orders (March 2004) 737-400's, 149Y as interim equipment. +2 orders (February 2005) 717-200's.
December 2003: 7th ATR 72-212A delivery.
May 2004: Considering service to Guwahati (India).
September 2004: Bangkok to Shenzhen (717, 3x-weekly). In October 2004, Bangkok to Male (Maldives) (A320, 3x-weekly.
Plans an initial public offering (IPO) to raise funds for expansion, which including investment of about THB 2.5 billion/$60.2 million in 3 projects: cargo, catering, and maintenance; at Bangkok's new Suvarnabhumi Airport.
+1 order 717-200 and 2 orders A320's. A320-214 (2254, HS-PGU "Guilin"), Debis AirFinance (DEA) leased.
November 2004: Deployed Lufthansa (DLH) Systems' (FMS) Database Services, which supply comprehensive navigation data for cockpit systems.
A320-214 (2310, HS-PGV "Krabi"), Debis AirFinance (DEA) leased.
December 2004: 8th ATR 72-212A (715, HS-PGC "Nang"), Aircraft International Renting leased.
June 2005: Bangkok Airways (PGB) is a major Thai regional airline operating domestic, jet airplane services and scheduled, international, jet airplane flights to Cambodia and Singapore.
1,318 employees (including 116 Flight Crew (FC); 140 Cabin Attendants (CA); & 166 Maintenance Technicians (MT)).
(IATA) Code: PG - 829. (ICAO) Code: BKP - (Callsign - BANGKOK AIR).
Parent organization/shareholders: Dr Prasert Prasarttong-Osoth (77.04%); Sahokol Estate (11.72%); Narumol Jainaknan (7.67%); Bangkok Dusit Medical Services (3.28%); & others (0.29%).
Owns: Siem Reap Airways International (SRA) (100%).
Alliances: Thai Airways (TII).
Main Base: Bangkok International airport (BKK).
Domestic, Scheduled Destinations: Bangkok; Chiang Mai; Koh Samui; Krabi; Phuket; Sukhothai; Trat; & Utapao.
International, Scheduled Destinations: Guilin; Jinghong; Luang Prabang; Male; Phnom Penh; Shenzhen; Siem Reap; Singapore; Xi'An; & Yangon.
August 2005: A320-232 (2509, HS-BGW), Debis AirFinance (DEA) leased.
November 2005: Bangkok Airways (PGB) will inaugurate nonstop service from Bangkok to Hiroshima on December 2nd and operate 3 flights a week, on Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays, using an A320.
December 2005: $1 billion, 6 orders (February 2012) A350-800's, 258 passengers for operation on new long haul services from Thailand to Europe, commencing in 2012.
February 2006: Bangkok Airways (PGB) signed a 5-year deal to implement Kale's Revera passenger revenue accounting software.
March 2006: Bangkok Airways (PGB) will increase the frequency on its Samui to Singapore route from 6 to 7 flights a week from April 18th. The airline uses a 717-200 on this route.
April 2006: The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has urged Thailand to postpone the opening of Suvarnabhumi Airport to December, even as local authorities insist the new facility will be open for business in July. Thai newspapers said (IATA) member airlines are concerned that they have yet to enter the new building to establish their service systems - - a privilege afforded only to Thai Airways (TII) and Bangkok Airways (PGB) to date. The airport, which is designed to replace the ageing Don Muang facility, has already faced numerous delays, and Thai authorities are insisting that Suvarnabhumi should be open in July, even though they have yet to set an official date. However, they face a potential battle with (IATA), which insists that airlines have at least six months formal notice of the opening of a new airport, and most large airlines need at least three months to prepare their operation space and test their service systems. "There remain only three months to the July opening. This may be inadequate for airlines' preparation work. It is thus in the best interests of everyone to postpone [the opening date] to December,'' an (IATA) source was quoted as saying in the Bangkok Post. There is also confusion about the future of Don Muang, with some airlines expecting it to remain open, but some authorities also saying it would be relegated to a repair facility only. Suvarnabhumi is designed to accommodate 45 million passengers per year.
May 2006: Thai Airways (TII) and Bangkok Airways (PGB) signed a Memo of Understanding (MOU) to develop coordination further on their respective networks. Thai (TII) signed a similar agreement with Laos Airlines (LAO) in early April.
September 2006: Except for one cancelled Emirates (EAD) Hong Kong - Bangkok flight Tuesday, airline operations into and out of Thailand appear to be operating normally and without disruption despite this week's bloodless military coup.
Coup leader and apparent interim head of state Army Chief, General Sonthi Boonyaratglin said that Bangkok's long-delayed $4 billion Suvarnabhumi Airport will open next week as planned and a similar statement was offered by Airports of Thailand.
Limited operations at Suvarnabhumi already have started with flights this week by Thai Airways (TII) and Jetstar (JSA), while Bangkok Airways (PGB) is scheduled to operate flights from the airport today.
The new airport, which claims to have the world's largest terminal building (563,000 sq m) and tallest control tower and also features a spa and bowling alley, is scheduled to be fully operational by September 27, with most if not all commercial flights to Don Muang Airport ceasing by September 28. However, carriers previously warned ousted Prime Minister, Thaksin Shinawarta that the new airport may not be ready for full-scale operations.
Airlines have expressed concern that the baggage system will have problems, and the facility failed luggage handling tests earlier this month. The airport has been designed to handle 45 million passengers and 3 million tons of cargo annually.
October 2006: Bangkok Airways (PGB) will resume nonstop service from Bangkok to Male (Maldives) on November 30th. (PGB) will operate 2x-weekly, on Mondays & Thursdays, using an A320.
Bangkok Airways (PGB) will inaugurate nonstop service from Bangkok to Fukuoka (Japan) on December 9th. The airline will operate 3 flights a week, on Tuesdays, Thursdays, & Saturdays, using an A320.
Bangkok Airways (PGB) will inaugurate nonstop service from Bangkok to Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam) on March 1st, operating 3 flights a week, on Tuesdays, Thursdays, & Saturdays, using a mix of A320s and 717-200s.
January 2007: Airports of Thailand approved the use of Don Muang Airport (DMK) for domestic flights with no international connections beginning in March, according to press reports. Don Muang was to have been closed to commercial traffic in September, when the new Suvarnabhumi Airport opened for business. The "Bangkok Post" said reopening (DMK), which now handles only charter flights, would give airport officials "flexibility" to solve problems at the new facility.
February 2007: Thailand's Dept of Civil Aviation (DCA) postponed renewal of Suvarnabhumi International Airport's safety certification, which expired last week, and originally was issued to comply with (ICAO) efforts to standardize international airport documentation. No Thai airport is currently certificated by (DCA). Although lack of certification has no impact on operations at the new Bangkok airport, Thai politicians are trumpeting it in their campaign to discredit the deposed Thaksin government, which built the facility. Several terminal gates at a time are being closed, because of repairs to pavement cracks, creating some airborne holds and forcing a few flights to divert to U Tapao a former US Air Force base now used for charter and cargo operations to add fuel before returning to (BKK).
Bangkok Airways (PGB) and Thai AirAsia (THA) have asked that domestic flights be moved back to Don Muang, Bangkok's old international airport, until repairs are completed. A number of other carriers want to use Don Muang, now restricted to General Aviation (GA), charter and maintenance operations, for non-connecting short-haul trips. Airports of Thailand staff has recommended reopening the airport to scheduled flights.
The Bangkok press, eager to side with the government in power, rarely misses an opportunity to criticize Suvarnabhumi. One popular English-language paper quoted an "expert" who said the runways should be rebuilt on piles so flood waters can flow underneath. Another paper front-paged a story about a leak from a terminal toilet pipe that caused minor damage to a few pieces of baggage on the floor below.
Airports of Thailand Chairman, Chotisak Asapavirya resigned owing to "ill health." He had been criticized heavily for the pavement cracking problems at Bangkok's $3 billion showcase Suvarnabhumi International. While he said he was not forced out, he told Thai media that he warned authorities not to rush the airport's opening. Meanwhile, Suvarnabhumi's Director & Head of Commercial Operations have been fired. All reportedly were fingered as part of the controversy surrounding construction problems and charges of corruption at the new facility. Pavement cracks are spreading and are affecting both runways and taxiways. The Engineering Council of Thailand estimated that 5.3% of the taxiways, or about 97,000 sq m, are affected.
The Thai Prime Minister, Surayud Chulamont ordered Bangkok's Don Muang International Airport reopened to both international and domestic flights in order to prevent overcrowding at the new Suvarnabhumi International.
He cited increasing traffic at Suvarnabhumi and the need to block some gates to repair cracked airfield pavement. Transport Minister, Theera Haocharoen said decisions about which airlines will move back to Don Muang should be made within 2 weeks. The airport should be ready for service by April 1.
Thai Airways (TII), Orient Air (OTH), Bangkok Airways (PGB), Thai AirAsia (THA), One-Two-Go (OTH), and Nok Air (NKA) have said they will operate from Don Muang, which can handle 37 million passengers per year. Thai AirAsia (THA) said it will move its entire 80-flights-per-day schedule back to the old facility.
The airports are on opposite sides of Bangkok, 30 km apart, with no direct scheduled public transportation between them. Thai Airways (TII) has said it will operate a shuttle service, when traffic resumes at Don Muang. Hotels and merchants near Don Muang have joined Low Cost Carriers (LCC)s serving the Thai market in pressing for the reopening. It was closed to scheduled traffic when Suvarnabhumi opened in September.
Airports of Thailand executives said that using Don Muang for short-haul traffic will postpone the need to build two more runways and a low-cost terminal at Suvarnabhumi.
June 2007: Bangkok Airways (PGB) took delivery of the 1st of 6 A319s it has on order. The remaining 5 will be delivered next year and in 2009.
A319-132 (3142, HS-PGS), (CIT) Group (TCI) leased.
August 2007: (ILFC) (ILF) announced the following lease contract: Bangkok Airways (PGB) for 1 new A319-100 for 6 years with delivery in January 2009.
March 2008: 2 A319-132s (3421, HS-PGT; 3424, HS-PGX "Hiroshima"), (ILF) leased.
April 2008: (TAT) Group subsidiary, Aircraft International Renting placed an order for 2 70-seat ATR 72-500s for delivery late this year and next to Bangkok Airways (PGB). The order is valued at $37 million at list prices and will bring (PGB)'s ATR 72-500 fleet to 20.
A319-132 (3454, HS-PGY), (ILF) leased.
August 2008: Bangkok Airways (PGB) is suspending services on 2 international routes and reducing frequency on another to help it cope with increases in fuel prices and allow it to allocate capacity elsewhere. A spokesman said from Bangkok that (PGB) is suspending services between Bangkok and Shenzhen in China on August 15 and suspending services between Bangkok and Fukuoka in Japan on October 1. In addition, (PGB) will reduce frequency between Bangkok and Hiroshima in Japan on October 1 to 2x-weekly from 3. The suspensions come as the airline is seeking to cope with high fuel prices, adding that it will allow it to better allocate capacity for more profitable services. “Everyone has to tighten their belts now. We are going over all the routes that make the least money and we will adjust our network as we need to. But we are looking to increase our flights in other areas and we will announce those when they are ready.”
January 2009: A319-132 (3759, HS-PGN), (ILF) leased.
March 2009: Liberator.aero will provide its fuel savings program and emissions measurement module to Bangkok Airways (PGB) under a 3 year deal. It said it is targeting a -2% reduction in the annual fuel bill.
May 2009: A319-132 (3911, HS-PPA "Si Satchanalai"), (ILF) leased.
August 2009: ACCDT: A Bangkok Airways (PGB) ATR 72 (670, /01 HS-PGL "Pha Ngan") (PW127) that departed from Krabi Island, crashed on landing in Koh Samui, skidding off the runway and colliding with an unused airport control tower, killing the flight's captain (FC) and requiring hospitalization of seven others including the copilot (FC).
According to Flight Safety Foundation's Aviation Safety Network (ASN), the airplane was "substantially damaged . . . beyond repair." Thailand's Department of Civil Aviation Director General, Kannikar Kemavuthanon told the "BBC," "The weather was very bad during landing with heavy rain and wind." The airplane was carrying 68 passengers and four crew members (FC - CA). The crash occurred at around 2:30 pm local time with wind blowing at 15 kt, according to the (ASN).
The accident is believed to be (PGB)'s first fatal crash. (PGB) operates eight additional ATR 72s as well as 2 717-200s, 6 A319s and 3 A320s. ATR said it would send a technical team to Koh Samui to assist the Thai investigators.
September 2009: Bangkok Airways (PGB) will suspend services on four international routes. On October 25, it will suspend its daily, Bangkok - Ho Chi Minh City and 2x-weekly, Bangkok - Xian services. It will suspend its 2x-weekly, Bangkok - Hiroshima service on October 27, and its 4x-weekly, Bangkok - Guilin service on November 10.
These changes will help it to "accommodate itself to the market situation", says (PGB). (PGB) operates either A319 or A320 airplanes on the four routes.
April 2010: Southeast Asian carriers Bangkok Airways (PGB) and Singapore Airlines (SIA) edged out the Japanese carriers to lead the way in March. The Asian carriers with the best on-time arrival performance were:
1. Bangkok Airways - 90.06%
2. Singapore Airlines - 89.16%
3. Air Nippon - 88.13%
4. ANA - 87.81%
5. JAL Express - 87.23%
August 2010: Bangkok Airways (PGB) will increase Bangkok service to Phnom Penh (3x- to 4x-daily), Male (2x- to 3x-weekly) October 31 and to Yangon (1x- to 2x-daily) on October 2.
April 2011: SEE ATTACHED "AIRLINER WORLD" REVIEW OF BANGKOK AIRWAYS, INCLUDING FLEET STATUS AND CURRENT ROUTE MAP - - "PGB-2011-04-A/B/C/D/E/F - - FLEET STATUS - - ROUTE MAP."
Current route destinations (SEE ATTACHED ROUTE MAP): Bangkok; Chiang Mai; Dhaka; Guilin; Hong Kong; Krabi; Lampang; Luang Prabang; Male; Mumbai; Pattaya; Phnom Penh; Phuket; Samui; Siem Reap; Singapore; Trat; and Yangon.
September 2011: Bangkok Airways (PGB) canceled an order for four A350-800s after shelving its long-haul ambitions, according to the "Bangkok Post." (PGB) President, Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth told the newspaper that the cancellation was in line with (PGB)'s revised strategic plan to shelve its intercontinental start-up and prepare for domestic and regional expansion. The order was placed at the end of 2005.
(PGB) had planned to use the airplanes for flights to/from Europe. "Over the next five years, we would rather consolidate our domestic and regional operations, and that diminished the need for us to acquire larger airplanes," Puttipong said.
It is understood (PGB) will focus on orders for more A320s and A319s for regional growth and rely on its code share partners to feed international passengers to its network.
January 2012: Bangkok Airways (PGB) and Finnair (FIN) have signed a code share agreement beginning January 15. (FIN) will place its code on (TII) service between Bangkok and Samui, Phuket, Chiang Mai, as well as Singapore - Samui service and Hong Kong - Samui service.
February 2012: Bangkok Airways (PGB) plans to increase the frequency of its Bangkok - Lampang service. (PGB), which currently serves Lampang daily via Sukhothai, will make this a nonstop service with 12 flights a week, using ATR 72-500 airplanes, starting on March 25.
(PGB) is the only operator on the route.
April 2012: Bangkok Suvarnabhumi airport (BKK) needs another runway but faces obstacles, a senior Thai official said. Thailand Deputy Transport Minister, Chadchart Sittipunt said that, while there is no problem with land availability, regulatory and noise concerns make it hard to expand. “To add another runway would be difficult,” Sittipunt said. He pointed out it would take another year to finish an environmental impact assessment.
The airport, which was built to handle 45 million passengers annually, is swiftly moving toward its capacity ceiling. Its 2 runways limit the facility to 76 flights per hour, and growing tourist arrivals and increasing passenger volumes indicate the need for expansion.
“I think we need an extra runway [to serve as] a relief runway,” said Sittipunt.
(IATA) (ITA) has said Thailand should expand Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport (SVB). “Thailand needs to urgently build new terminal and runway capacity at Suvarnabhumi to ensure it remains one of the region’s top hubs,” (IATA) said.
(IATA) commissioned consultants Oxford Economics to carry out a study of 54 countries to better quantify the benefits they receive from aviation.
Aviation contributed THB139 billion/$4.48 billion to the Thai Gross Domestic Product (GDP), or 1.5% of the total, through the output of airlines, airports, ground services, their supply chains and the spending of those employed in the sector and in the supply chains. This number rises to THB818 billion or 9% of (GDP) when its contribution to the tourism sector was factored in.
“These urgent expansion projects must be done in full consultation with the airline users to ensure that costs and design are in line with the needs of those that will pay the bill — the airlines,” (IATA) said.
(IATA) also endorsed the view that Don Muang, Bangkok’s former airport, should be available to airlines and aviation services but should remain supplementary to (SVB) airport.
“Don Muang can fulfill a vital role of relief capacity in the short term. But the long-term solution is a single strong hub for Bangkok at Suvarnabhumi,” it said, because one major hub allows for more convenient connections and improves efficiency as airlines do not need to support duplicate infrastructure.
July 2012: Bangkok Airways (PGB) remains focused on domestic and regional operations as it looks to expand.
(PGB) President, Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth said (PGB) is “looking at more destinations in Northeast Thailand,” which has smaller, less affluent tourist traffic than the rest of the country. However, he said the region has a large, scattered population that will help build (PGB)’s network.
It is also considering flights to Hat Yai in Thailand’s South.
The regional emphasis includes expansion in Southeast Asia. (PGB) will soon (“maybe this winter”) fly to the Laotian capital of Vientiane in addition to Luang Prabang, he said.
In Myanmar, the carrier will add 1 more daily flight to Yangon again this winter; next year it hopes to add Mandalay to the roster. Beyond that, (PGB) is also considering Indonesia.
Because of this incremental approach, (PGB) has no plans to purchase airplanes, although it is considering two A320s.
(PGB) is planning to list on the Stock Exchange of Thailand in early 2013 to enable it to acquire airplanes and build a new hangar at Suvarnabhumi, President Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth said. He gave few details but acknowledged the Initial Public Offering (IPO) will likely to be within the next 12 months. “We plan for early next year, 2013,” he said.
The size of the listing is also likely to be limited, as Thai law prohibits foreigners from owning more than half of a Thai airline.
“(We will) probably put 40% - 45% in the market,” Prasarttong-Osoth said.
The privately owned carrier will most likely be listing as an airline only. It owns and operates 3 airports (Koh Samui, Sukhothai and Trat) which are not likely to be part of the flotation. “I think it will be the airline,” Prasarttong-Osoth said.
The family-owned and run carrier has been limited in its ability to grow its equity base. It believes a successful float will allow it to raise more funds for future expansion, he added.
September 2012: Bangkok Airways (PGB) currently flies to 8 destinations in Thailand and 8 international routes.
November 2012: Bangkok Airways (PGB) and Japan Airlines (JAL) launched a code share agreement under which (PGB) will place its code on (JAL) service to Bangkok from Tokyo Haneda, Tokyo Kansai and Mumbai. (JAL) will place its code on (PGB) service from Bangkok to Samui, Phuket, and Chiang Mai.
December 2012: Bangkok Airways (PGB) resumed services December 1st on the route from Bangkok (BKK) to Vientiane (VTE), which it previously operated during the winter season 2007/2008. Flights on the 500 km route to the capital and the largest city of Laos are now operated with daily frequencies using A319s. Competition on the route comes from both Lao Airlines (LAO) and Thai Airways (TII), which serve it each with 2x-daily flights.
January 2013: Bangkok Airways (PGB) will launch Bangkok service to Krabi (2x-daily, on March 31), Mandalay (4x-weekly, on September 16), Trat (3x-daily) and Male (5x-weekly, on March 31).
June 2013: British Airways (BAB) begins code sharing with Bangkok Airways (PGB) on June 11 on flights to Phuket, Koh Samui, and Chiang Mai. The code share will also see Singapore - Koh Samui service.
Bangkok Airways (PGB) is an oddity: – a successful independent full-service short-haul carrier that has been able to grow despite competing in a market dominated by (LCC)s and large aligned flag carriers. (PGB) now seeks another oddity: – an initial public offering (IPO) in a market that in recent years has only seen (LCC)s and occasional flag carriers go public. The remainder of 2013 will see four Southeast Asian carriers attempt (IPO)s: three (LCC)s in AirAsia X (ASX), Indonesia AirAsia (AWR), and Nok Air (NKA); and low-profile Bangkok Airways (PGB).
If successful with its upcoming listing on the Stock Exchange of Thailand, (PGB) will have the cash to accelerate network and fleet expansion. (PGB), which currently operates 23 airplanes, is well positioned to expand despite facing intensifying competition in most of its markets.
(PGB)’s biggest strength is a wide and growing portfolio of partnerships, which gives it access to high-yield passengers. Several of its partners are growing rapidly at (PGB)’s main hub, Bangkok Suvarnabhumi, and need more regional feed.
September 2013: Bangkok Airways (PGB), the Thai ’boutique’ airline, has launched a new route from its home base in Bangkok (BKK) to Mandalay (MDL) in Myanmar. The 1,010 km sector will be flown 4x-times weekly using (PGB)’s A319s, and faces competition from Thai Airways (TII), who also operate the route 4x-times weekly, with slightly larger A320s.
October 2013: Bangkok Airways (PGB) has become the 1st carrier to introduce international flights at Nay Pyi Taw (NYT) in Myanmar, with the start of flights from Bangkok (BKK) on September 30. The 790 km sector will be operated 3x-weekly (Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays) using (PGB)’s 70-seat ATR 72s. Bangkok Airways (PGB) already serves 2 other destinations in Myanmar; Yangon (with 3x-daily flights) and Mandalay (with 4x-weekly flights).
November 2013: The Myanmar - Thailand market is experiencing another surge of additional capacity as airlines from both countries continue introducing new flights. There will soon be about 23 daily frequencies between the two countries, up from 14 only a couple of months ago and eight from mid-2012.
So far, the demand has not kept up with supply, resulting in unsustainably low load factors. The intense competition also has led to a reduction in yields. But the market could get a reprieve as Myanmar and Thailand prepare to lift visa requirements. By the end of 2013, Thailand is expected to become one of the 1st visa-free countries for Myanmar. This should unleash a new wave of passenger growth, although for at least the short term, the market seems set to continue to suffer from over-capacity.
December 2013: Bangkok Airways (PGB) introduced a new domestic route to its network on November 29th, when it started flights between Bangkok Suvarnabhumi (BKK) and Udon Thani (UTH). Initially, the 450 km long sector will be operated 2x-daily using (PGB)’s A319s, but this will increase to 3x-daily from February. Direct competition on the route comes from Thai Airways (TII), who currently operate 23x-weekly flights between the two airports. Nok Air (NKA) and Thai AirAsia (THA) also both operate multiple daily flights to Udon Thani from Bangkok’s Don Mueang Airport.
Bangkok Airways (PGB) has signed an agreement for 9 ATR 72-600s. The turboprops are expected to be direct purchases from the airframer as part of the boutique carrier’s fleet renewal plans.
(PGB) has eight ATR 72-500s in its fleet. The turboprops were built between 2001 and 2008. It also has a fleet of 16 A319s and A320s
(PGB) had earlier said that it is also likely to add either the A320neo or the 737 Max to its fleet.
(PGB) has taken delivery of its 11th A319-100 on wet-lease from Bulgaria Air ((IATA) Code: FB, based at Sofia) (LZB). The A319-100 arrived at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi on December 9. Bangkok Airways (PGB) uses its A319 fleet to serve domestic Thai routes to Chiang Mai, Koh Samui, Krabi and Udon Thani as well as regional flights to Myanmar, Bangladesh, the Maldives, Cambodia, Laos, Singapore, and Hong Kong.
(PGB) currently operates 27 airplanes, and serves 11 countries, 25 destinations, on 36 routes and 173 daily flights.
February 2014: Bangkok Airways (PGB) said its potential Initial Public Offering (IPO) cash haul will not be used for expansion, but for consolidation and asset purchase.
“We intend to fully purchase all the new ATR airplanes,” Bangkok Airways President, Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth said.
The ATR 72-600s will be delivered over the next 2 years. One will arrive later in 2014, five in 2015 and one in 2016. They will be phased in as replacement for (PGB)’s existing fleet of ATR 72-500s, likely helped by the proceeds from its (IPO).
Bangkok Airways’ (IPO), originally announced mid-2013, has seen many delays despite being slated for the fourth quarter of 2013. The current unrest in Thailand, although seemingly a contributor to the delays, is not likely to affect the airplane purchase plans, Prasarttong-Osoth said.
(PGB) ordered 6 ATR 72-600s plus 2 options, worth almost $200 million, and ATR has struck a deal with L-3 Link Simulation & Training to open a simulator center in Bangkok.
March 2014: AirFrance (AFA) launched 6x-weekly Paris Charles de Gaulle - Rangoon via Bangkok service. The Paris - Bangkok sector is operated with a Boeing 777-300, with an onward connection on a Bangkok Airways (PGB)’s Airbus A320 on a code share basis. (AFA) will also add daily Paris Charles de Gaulle - Hong Kong Airbus A380 service from June 9 to October 25.
April 2014: Japan Airlines (JAL), which recently expanded its code share agreement with Korean Air (KAL), has now signed an 8-route agreement with Bangkok Airways (PGB) as it pushes further into Southeast Asia. (PGB) operates some 170 flights per day from Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi International Airport to a wide range of Thai beach destinations, as well as Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, Malaysia, Singapore, and the Maldives. (PGB) uses a mix of short- and medium-haul ATR 72-500s, Airbus A319s and A320s.
The two carriers have an existing code share agreement on five destinations including Phuket, Chiang Mai, Ko Samui, Mumbai, and Male. The new agreement will be expanded to include new routes to Yangon, Nai Pyi Taw, and Mandalay (in Myanmar), Phnom Penh and Siem Reap in Cambodia), and Vientiane and Luang Prabang in Laos.
(JAL) recently boosted connections to Bangkok with a 2x-daily Boeing 767 service, which will “ensure smooth connectivity” for the new code shares into the lucrative Southeast Asian centers of tourism, an expanding sector of the Japanese market currently served by low-cost carriers Peach Aviation (PCA), AirAsia X (ASX), and Vanilla Air (WAJ).
July 2014: Bangkok Airways (PGB) has firmed options on 2 ATR 72-600s and ordered 1 additional airplane in a deal valued at $73.8 million at list prices. The options formed part of an order for 6 ATR 72-600s, plus 2 options, announced at the Singapore Airshow earlier this year. The final airplane is a new order.
(PGB) plans to expand its Airbus (EDS) fleet as the carrier eyes more international routes.
See video - - "VISIT THAILAND" - -
September 2014: Bangkok Airways (PGB) filed a submission to the Thai Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for an initial public offering (IPO) of just under <25% of the company, aimed at generating additional funds for fleet renovation and infrastructure upgrades.
Subscription is expected to open for individual investors around mid-October, with shares expected to begin trading by the end of next month.
Bangkok Airways (PGB) President, Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth said: “For the past 46 years, (PGB) has grown consistently, thanks to our unique business structure that covers the integrated aviation business. The (IPO) will give the general public a unique opportunity to be a part of the company’s growth. The proceeds raised will be invested in the expansion of our fleet of airplanes including improving and/or replacing some of our existing airplanes, purchasing engines, spare parts and necessary equipment for our new fleet on par with aviation industry standards.”
In addition, he said, part of the money raised from the (IPO) would be used to renovate (PGB)’s hangar at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi International Airport, as well as Samui International Airport, which is owned and operated by the airline.
“The (IPO) will help to strengthen our financial capability and support future growth. We plan to offer no more than 520 million newly issued ordinary shares, accounting for no more than 24.8% of the total issued and paid-up shares,” Puttipong said.
October 2014: News Item A-1: The subscription period for the Bangkok Airways (PGB) initial public offering (IPO), which is expected to raise between THB11.96 billion and THB14.04 billion/$368 million to $432 million, opened for retail investors October 14 to 17.
The (IPO) involves no more than 520 million newly issued ordinary shares, accounting for no more than 24.8% of total issued and paid-up shares. Subscribers are required to pay THB27 per share, which is the maximum price of the (IPO) price range of THB23 to THB27 per share.
The (IPO) is the largest listing on the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) in 2014 to date, and proceeds from the share sale will be used to upgrade and grow the Bangkok Airways (PGB)’s fleet, renovate (PGB)’s airplane hangar at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi International Airport, and for improvements at Samui International Airport.
Bangkok Airways (PGB) President, Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth said the capital will be used to help strengthen its financial capability and support future growth.
Following closure of the subscription period, allocation results were announced on October 22. The company expects shares to begin trading on the (SET) on November 3.
News Item A-2: Thai regional carrier Bangkok Airways (PGB) is to start using northern Thai Chiang Mai Airport as a 2nd hub for its local services from the end of October, using ATR 72-500 and Airbus A320 airplanes.
Initial services will be to Myanmar (Mandalay and Yangon), and to regional tourist destinations in Thailand (Phuket, Udon Thani).
(PGB), which currently flies most of its 11 domestic and 13 international full-service routes out of Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi International, has so far resisted moving to the predominantly low-cost carrier (LCC) hub of Don Mueang, and has instead used its two wholly owned airports at Koh Samui and Sukhothai as secondary bases outside Bangkok.
The new move signals (PGB)’s intention to maintain what it has described as its “boutique” strategy, linking high value destinations not well or directly served by existing (LCC) or full-service airline services.
“We foresee Chiang Mai as [an] important hub for Thailand’s tourism industry,” Bangkok Airways (PGB) VP Sales, Ariya Prasarttong-Osoth said.
The airline’s list of code share agreements with international carriers such as Qantas (QAN), Jet Airways (IMU), Qatar Airways (QTA), Aeroflot (ARO), Cathay Pacific (CAT), and Etihad Airways (EHD) give it good access to international arrivals for the ongoing feeder traffic business to its list of secondary destinations.
The new Chang Mai hub will offer a significant gateway into Indochina’s developing nations such as Laos, Cambodia, and Myanmar from Thailand’s north, without demanding that travelers fly back to Bangkok to get a connection, Prasarttong-Osoth said.
Chiang Mai (CNX) to Mandalay (MDL) ATR 72 3x; to Phuket (HKT) A320 7x vs Thai Air Asia (THA) 21x; to Udon Thani (UTH) ATR 72 14x vs Nok Air (NKA) 7X; to Yangon (RGN) ATR 72 4x vs Air Bagan (BGN) 2x.
(PGB), which currently flies 8 ATR 72s, 8 A320s and 10 A319s, recently listed for an initial public offering (IPO) slated to raise some $400 million. It plans to use the proceeds to expand its fleet (it ordered 8 new ATR 72-600s earlier this year) and to improve facilities at Koh Samui following a lifting of previous access restrictions by the Thai Department of Civil Aviation at the private airport.
December 2014: Bangkok Airways (PGB) has taken delivery of its 1st of 9 ATR 72-600s, which will be used for growth and will replace its 8 ATR 72-500s.
The new 70Y-seat ATR 72-600s, which will be delivered through 2017, will be operated on (PGB)’s expanding network of domestic and regional services.
ATR said the new generation ATRs are equipped with a new full-glass cockpit and feature a high comfort layout with larger overhead bins.
(PGB) President, Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth said: “Today’s delivery is part of (PGB)’s strategy of matching our growing network and frequency requirements with the right airplanes. The ATR airplanes has the lowest seat-mile cost in its class, is ideally suited for regional and domestic operations, and enables us to provide the highest level of comfort and service to our customers.”
February 2015: INCDT: A taxiing Korean Air (KAL) Airbus A330 hit a parked Bangkok Airways (PGB) ATR 72-600 at Yangon International Airport, Myanmar, at the weekend, significantly damaging the parked airplane’s rudder and trim tabs.
The pilot (FC) and crew (CA) of the (KAL) A330 were apparently not aware of the collision and took off as scheduled late that night.
The damage to the wingtip of the A330, flight KAL 472, was not revealed but the airplane, which was carrying 134 passengers and 11 crew ((FC) - (CA)) and bound for Incheon, Korea, received a turn-back call from Myanmar (ATC) some 20 minutes after takeoff.
The airplane turned back when alerted of the collision and potential damage, by (ATC) following a report of the damage to the ATR 72-600 by a member of the Yangon Airport ground crew.
The incident follows a ground collision of a Golden Myanmar (GMY) A320 and a Myanmar Airways (BRM) A319 last April, aggravated by restricted apron space at the airport, which has only 4 gates to handle some 3 million passengers from >20 airlines every year.
An expansion of the current facilities is being undertaken alongside a plan to build a new airport to ease congestion at Yangon.
May 2015: News Item A-1: Bangkok Airways reported a 1st-quarter net income of THB1.1 billion ($33 million), up significantly from a net profit of THB526.1 million in the year-ago period.
The airline cited economic and tourism recovery, political stability, oil price stability, and business strategy maintenance for the results. “In addition, the Department of Civil Aviation of Thailand granted Koh Samui Airport an increase in flight operating allowances to 50 flights a day. That meant we could increase frequency on the Samui-Singapore route from 7x to 10x-week, and the Samui-Kuala Lumpur route from 7x- to 11x-weekly,” Bangkok Airways (PGB) President Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth said.
1st-quarter revenue rose 10% to THB6.7 billion.
Traffic rose 10.9% to 1.43 million passengers, and a +10.1% increase in capacity helped drive load factor to 71.9% LF from 69.3% LF in the year-ago quarter. These factors helped drive a corresponding 14.3% rise in (RPK)s.
(PGB) took delivery of an A319 and an ATR 72-600 in the 1st quarter, bringing its fleet to 29 aircraft, and also recently signed a code share agreement with China Airlines, its 17th code share partner.
News Item A-2: Bangkok Airways (PGB) and Indian carrier, Jet Airways (JPL) are to offer code share flights between Bangkok and Mumbai from May 4. The agreement brings Bangkok Airways (PGB)’s code share tally to 17 airlines.
June 2015: Bangkok Airways (PGB) hopes to have crafted a suitable fleet expansion plan by early next year so as to ensure deliveries of any new airplanes can commence by a 2018 deadline.
President Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth told the "Bangkok Post" in an interview that the Thai regional carrier is currently studying the A320neo, the 737 MAX, and the CS300 from Bombardier (BMB), among possible options.
According to Puttipong, management has shown partiality to the A320neo given the airline's fleet consists of 11 A319-100s, 8 A320-200s and 10 ATR 72-500s and ATR 72-600s. But, he added, when the (PGB)'s operational requirements are taken into consideration, newer models may be avoided altogether in favor of existing versions.
"Most of our flights are roughly one hour, while the fuel efficiency advantages for new aircraft such as the A320neo are for flights beyond two hours," he said.
During an (IPO) on the Stock Exchange of Thailand, Bangkok Airways raised approximately USD400 million in funding to put towards fleet renewal which should see its fleet almost double by 2018.
July 2015: News Item A-1: "Thai Airlines Face Flying Ban to USA" in
"Bangkok Post" July 18, 2015.
The Minister said the government is also taking action to ease the so-called significant safety concerns raised by (ICAO). The shortcomings identified by the (ICAO) during an audit of the (DCA) earlier this year centered on (DCA)'s failures to meet aviation safety standards in regards to regulating aviation businesses and granting air operator certificates (AOC)s.
There was also a lack of sufficient oversight to ensure the effective implementation of (ICAO) standards, the organization said after its audit.
Regarding (DCA) staff shortages, (ACM) Prajin said the department was recruiting new staff to carry out inspections and certification of airlines. They need time to receive training before they can start work, he added.
(ACM) Prajin also said that work on 2 manuals, the Flight Operating Inspector Manual and Air Operating Certification (AOC) Requirement, was now complete. Staff will receive training on the safety manuals to carry out inspections and certifications of 28 new airlines that provide international flight services.
The Minister said Thai Airways (TII) has already come up with a solution if the outcome of the (FAA)'s final audit is unfavorable to Thailand.
(TII) plans to transfer its customers to airlines who are fellow members of the Star (SAL) Alliance.
As for a plan to carry out certification of new airlines, (ACM) Prajin said the plan had been postponed several times due to staff shortages, and a lack of safety manuals. But now the manuals were ready, and staff were being trained, he said.
However a suitable date for the certification had not yet been fixed as the (DCA) had to wait for the (ICAO) experts to visit, he said.
"We don't know when the (ICAO) staff are ready, so we cannot fix the date, but the certification may not be completed by this year. It may have to begin next year," (ACM) Prajin said.
Later (July 22, 2015) the (FAA) gave Thai aviation authorities until mid-October to take “corrective measures” over critical omissions in its commercial aviation safety standards. If these measures are not taken in time, Thai carriers could face a flight ban to the USA.
Thai Transport Minister, Prajin Juntong said that if further inspections do not meet the (FAA) requirements, Thailand’s aviation sector could be downgraded to a Category 2. He said this could “affect the industry’s flights into the USA.”
The (FAA) undertook a week-long inspection of Thai aviation oversight procedures following the application of an (ICAO) “red flag” status to Thai carriers in June. The (ICAO) red flag was applied over issues with standard procedures and safety adherence.
The (FAA) examination looked at inspection procedures at key Thai carriers including Thai Airways (TII) and Bangkok Airways (PGB). The initial report detailed three key areas of concern: lack of qualified inspection staff; some staff being “inappropriately assigned to aircraft types,” and lack of compliance with some standardized operations checklists (for both aircraft and ground operations).
The Thai government has already committed to shake up its safety and oversight procedures through the Thai Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) governing body. It has replaced previous (DCA) (CEO), Somchai Phiphutthawat with the (DCA)’s Inspector General, Parichart Khotcharat, and has also promised to introduce new oversight bodies to promote safety.
The (FAA) expects to release its full report by late August, after which Thai authorities will have 65 days to address any safety and compliance issues.
News Item A-2: The Indonesian Ministry of Transport has confirmed it has applied restrictions to Thai operators flying into the country following safety concerns by (ICAO) and the (FAA). The restrictions include banning any changes to existing flight schedules or aircraft, with an across-the-board ban on any new services from Thai operators.
Indonesian aviation authorities have also said they will check all carrier operation certifications for compliance with international requirements and standards.
Thailand was originally notified of the new restrictions in late May, but due to slow inter-governmental communications, the Thai Transport Department did not receive notification of the ban until mid-June, Thai Transport Minister Prajin Juntong said.
“The Thai Transport Ministry received the notification from its Indonesian counterpart on June 16,” Juntong said, although the restrictions were initially applied by Indonesia on May 29.
Juntong added the Indonesian authorities have also promised to conduct “frequent checks” on all Thai-registered airlines flying into the country.
This latest restriction adds to the tally of countries tightening regulatory requirements on Thai carriers. To date, China, South Korea, Taiwan, Japan and Singapore have all required extra oversight to be applied to Thai-registered aircraft flying into their airspace and destinations.
The latest restrictions have come on the heels of an (ICAO) red flag status applied in June, and a recent (FAA) preliminary report that concluded safety oversight was in need of urgent remedial action across several Thai carriers. The (FAA) is due to release its full report on Thai safety compliance in September.
However, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) (which has not joined in the Thailand restrictions) has signed a major deal promoting Thai tourism, despite the bans. (UAE) flag carrier, Etihad Airways (EHD) has agreed to collaborate with the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) on a $1.25 million venture to boost Thai tourism from several European and Middle East countries, as well as South Africa.
“This partnership with (EHD) will be a great benefit to both parties (to Thailand in terms of increased visitor numbers and to Etihad Airways (EHD) in terms of promoting its international network)” (TAT) (CEO) Juthaporn Rerngronasa said. He has targeted 28 million international visitors in 2015, but the plan could be derailed, if more international flight restrictions are applied.
News Item A-3: See attached "PGB-2015-07 - Update-A/B/C/D/E.jpg"
Bangkok Airways (PGB) is a major Thai regional airline operating domestic, jet airplane services and scheduled plus charter, international, jet airplane flights for passengers and cargo. Also has a dedicated Medical Evacuation service that is available 24 hours a day and promises a three-hour response time.
(IATA) Code: PG - 829. (ICAO) Code: BKP - (Callsign - BANGKOK AIR).
Parent organization/shareholders: Dr Prasert Prasarttong-Osoth (92.31%); Sahokol Estate (4.3%); Bangkok Dusit Medical Services (1.2%); & others (2.19%).
Subsidiary: Siem Reap Airways International (SRA) (100%).
Alliances: Thai Airways (TII).
Frequent Flyer Program: FlyerBonus.
Main Base: Bangkok Suvarnabhumi International airport (BKK).
Domestic, Scheduled Destinations: Bangkok; Chiang Mai (CNX); Hat Yai; Hua Hin; Koh Samui (USM); Krabi (KBV); Lampang; Loei; Mai Hong Son; Nakhon Ratchasima; Pattaya (UTP); Phuket (HKT); Rayong; Sukhothai (THS); Surat Thani; Trat (TDX); & Udon Thani.
International, Scheduled Destinations: Bagan; Bangalore; Da Nang; Dhaka; Fukuoka; Guilin; Hangzhou; Hiroshima; Ho Chi Minh City; Hong Kong (HKG); Jinghong; Kuala Lumpur (KUL); Luang Prabang; Macau; Male; Mandalay (MDL); Mumbai; Naha; Nanjing; Naypyidaw (NYT); Pakse; Phnom Penh; Shenzhen; Siem Reap; Singapore (SIN); Vientiene; Xi'An; Yangon (RGN); Zhengzhou.
August 2015: News Item A-1: Bangkok Airways (PGB) has reported a 2015 (Q2) net profit of +THB102.2 million/+$3 million, a significant swing from its net loss of -THB321 million in the same period last year. (PGB) said its results were due to operational efficiencies and the extension of its code share activities, including a recent deal with Kazakhstan-based Air Astana (AKZ).
(PGB) saw revenue rise +12.9% to THB5.56 billion, while passenger volume also rose +11% to 1.11 million, up from 1.05 million in the same period the previous year.
(PGB) has also seen additional benefit from the expansion of flight permits at its wholly owned Samui International Airport from a previous 36 to 50 flights a day. Nonetheless, (PGB) only registered average load factors of just <60% LF, down from an average of 65% LF for 2014.
A recent revival of confidence in Thailand as a destination has seen a rise in overall passenger numbers with a +40% jump year-on-year from July 2014. The country saw 17.5 million arrivals in the 1st 7 months of 2015, with China and Malaysia leading the list of origin travel. However, the deadly bombing at a Bangkok tourist attraction on August 17 could see this trend reversed.
News Item A-2: Bangkok Airways (PGB) and Air Astana (AKZ) announced a new code sharing partnership. (PGB) serves 11 destinations in Thailand plus a further 13 in neighboring countries, including Bangladesh, Cambodia, Hong Kong, India, Laos, Malaysia, the Maldives, Myanmar, and Singapore.
News Item A-3: Bangkok Airways (PGB) has applied strict security procedures at Thai departure airports, following a bombing in Bangkok that killed at least 21 people on August 17.
(PGB) has increased baggage and passenger checks to what it called “elevated, very strict security measures” compared to standard levels of inspection.
The security issues are the latest blow for Thailand, that has come under fire recently from both the (ICAO) and the (FAA) for its poor control of safety and security oversight. The country has been added to (ICAO’)s “black-flag” list of countries to be watched or avoided by carriers, and the (FAA) has given the country a deadline of late October to improve its operational systems or face a possible USA-flight ban.
Bangkok Airways (PGB) Director General, Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth said (PGB) is working in cooperation with the Airports Authority of Thailand (AOT) to implement increased security measures at Suvarnabhumi International Airport, Samui Airport, Sukhothai Airport and Trat Airport. The (AOT) also operates Don Mueang, Phuket, Chiang Mai, Hat Yai, Chiang Rai, and Suvarnabhumi airports.
Puttipong said Bangkok Airways (PGB)’s new security measures at (AOT) and company-owned airports are aimed at building confidence in security on flights. “(PGB) is still [committed to] serving regular routes,” he said.
Last month, the (AOT) dropped newly imposed increased security checks at Don Mueang, following public outcry over hours-long waiting times.
The enhanced checks, implemented mid-July, saw a 100% baggage X-ray scan policy at all terminals (something not previously done at the predominantly low-cost carrier (LCC) hub). But just 3 days later, the extra checks were dropped to ease complaints generated by the several-hours long queues that had developed.
October 2015: Bangkok Airways (PGB) began daily, Phuket - Hat Yai ATR 72-500 and ATR 72-600 service.
February 2016: News Item A-1: Bangkok Airways (PGB) has expanded Bangkok - Phnom Penh service to 6x-daily with Airbus A319s.
News Item A-2: "(IATA) Says Bangkok Airport a Safety Risk, Needs Urgent Expansion: Report" by Khettiya Jittapong & Manunphattr Dhanananphorn, Reuters, February 19, 2016.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has warned that Bangkok's main Suvarnabhumi Airport is a safety risk, with "serious" overcrowding soon to become a critical issue, and urgent expansion needed, the "Nation" daily reported on February 19.
Thailand is under pressure to improve its aviation standards after the USA Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) downgraded the country's safety ratings in December last year. "There are also safety concerns on the airport's tarmac, taxiways and apron area because of soft spots," (IATA) Director General & (CEO), Tony Tyler said.
"Aircraft get stuck in the soft surface due to substandard materials," he told the newspaper in an interview in Bangkok, after returning from the Singapore Airshow.
Thailand's aviation industry is under scrutiny after the United Nation's International Civil Aviation Authority (ICAO) downgraded the country in June 2015, giving it a red flag for missing a deadline to tackle safety concerns.
This week, the Thai Civil Aviation Authority said a review by (ICAO) was likely to be delayed until early 2017, because it needed more time to improve the qualification of Thai auditors.
Tyler said the airport, which handles 52 million passengers each year, had a significant regional and global role, but needed urgent expansion of its terminal capacity, the "Nation" said. "It was designed to handle 45 million passengers annually, but it exceeds that today and traffic is still growing at an annual +10% rate," he said. "Overcrowding is a serious issue that will become critical quickly," Tyler said.
(IATA) represents almost 260 airlines, accounting for 83% of global air traffic.
Thai airport operator Airports of Thailand said it was aware of the problems flagged by (IATA) and has readied several measures to improve runways using concrete and expand capacity, which are awaiting government approval. "We have prepared short- to medium- and long-term plans to solve the problems," Sirote Duangratana, General Manager of Suvarnabhumi Airport, told "Reuters."
March 2016: Bangkok Airways (PGB) plans to continue its fleet and network growth this year, as one of the few Thailand-based carriers to be prospering despite the multiple challenges facing the country’s airline industry. The full-service carrier expects to receive three additional ATR 72-600s and 3 or 4 Airbus A319s in 2016, including the 1 of each type that have already arrived.
April 2016: "(UK CAA) Offshoot to Help Thailand Win Back Safety Oversight Rating" by (ATW) Anne Paylor, April 20, 2016.
The Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand (CAAT) has appointed (CAA) International (CAAi), the advisory arm of the UK Civil Aviation Authority (UK CAA), to help strengthen the (CAAT)’s aviation safety oversight in compliance with (ICAO).
In June 2015, (ICAO) “red flagged” Thailand, raising the country’s aviation safety oversight rating to a full Significant Safety Concern (SSC) rating.
The (CAAi) project, which is expected to begin in May this year, will involve a team of around 10 experts from the (UK CAA) working with (CAAT) to recertify Thai-registered air operator’s certificates (AOC) and address (ICAO)’s (SSC).
(CAAi) will also provide on-the-job flight operations training to (CAAT) Inspectors, to help increase their core inspectorate competencies in accordance with international standards.
It will also help (CAAT) complete an (ICAO) Coordinated Validation Mission (ICVM) covering all of (ICAO)’s 8 critical elements of a safety oversight system ahead of Thailand’s impending (ICVM) safety audit. (ICVM)s help to validate progress made by states in resolving safety deficiencies identified during (ICAO)’s Universal Safety Oversight Audit Program (USOAP) audits.
(CAAi) Managing Director, Maria Rueda said: “With almost 600,000 passengers flying to Thailand from the UK alone in 2015, we are fully committed to assisting (CAAT) raise its level of effective implementation, and meet the international safety standards set by (ICAO). Working together, we are confident we can help lift the (SSC) and strengthen Thailand’s aviation safety oversight.”
May 2016: Thai-based Bangkok Airways (PGB) reported a net profit of +THB1.57 billion/$44.5 million for (1Q) 2016, up +THB487.9 million (+44.9%) from the year-ago period.
Quarterly revenue rose +15.5% to THB7.8 billion in (1Q) 2016. (PGB) was profitable in 2015, and continues to return solid results from niche marketing of regional short-haul destinations that connect to code share majors (such as Dubai-based Emirates Airline (EAD), Australian flag carrier Qantas (QAN), Russia’s Aeroflot (ARO) and Kazakhstan’s Air Astana (AKZ)) that bring tourist traffic in from outside the immediate region.
Bangkok Airways (PGB) President, Dr Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth said the improved performance was mainly because of a “growth in number of passengers and better average fares together with declining fuel costs.”
(PGB) said it had registered an overall increase in the number of passengers of +10.5% in (1Q) 2016. This was helped by a +18.2% rise in sales across Asia, including from Singapore, Vietnam, Hong Kong, Myanmar and Taiwan) but excluding Thailand.
During the 1st quarter, (PGB) also saw an improvement in load factor, which increased to 74.4% LF from 71.9% LF in (1Q) 2015. Passenger yield was up +4.5% to THB5.44 in (RPK)s.
Bangkok Airways (PGB) operates a fleet of 33 aircraft to regional tourist and business destinations across the SE Asian region using ATR 72 turboprops, Airbus A319s and A320s. It is scheduled to take delivery of 3 new aircraft before the end of 2016.
August 2016: ATR 72-600 (1345, HS-PZG), ex-(F-WWEE).
May 2017: Thai Airways (TII)’s air operator’s certificate (AOC) has been recertified after a 2015 (ICAO) audit of Thailand found significant concerns with the country’s safety oversight.
Following the 2015 audit, Thailand brought UK CAA consultancy unit (CAA) International (CAAi) on board in 2016 to help strengthen the local (CAA)’s safety oversight, (ICAO) compliance and to recertify its airlines.
“The Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand (CAAT) has announced that flag carrier Thai Airways International (TII) has been successfully recertified to the international safety standards of (ICAO). Thai Airways is the 3rd of Thailand’s international airlines to receive its air operator’s certificate recertification as part of (CAAT)’s recertification program,” (CAAi) said May 8.
(CAAT) Director General Chula Sukmanop said the recertification should have a “significant impact” for both Thai Airways and anyone flying to the country with Thai carriers.
Bangkok Airways (PGB) was the 1st airline to be recertified in February. At that time, (CAAT) and (CAAi) said they were hoping to have 9 airlines recertified by June. The 9 include the 6 largest airlines in Thailand, carrying a combined total of >100 million passengers per year.
Thai Airways (TII) is Thailand’s largest airline, serving 80 destinations in 37 countries.
(ICAO) is expected to audit Thailand again later this year.
October 2017: Bangkok Airways (PGB) began services between Bangkok Suvarnabhumi (BKK) and Phu Quoc (PQC), Vietnam on October 29. The 521 km sector will be operated 4x-weekly by (PGB)’s ATR 72s. There is currently no direct competition on this sector.
This will be the 2nd destination in Vietnam to be served by (PGB) in Winter 2017/2018. (PGB) already operates daily services from Bangkok Suvarnabhumi to Da Nang.
Click below for photos:
PGB-ATR 72-600 - 2014-02
0 717-23S (BR715) (5037-55064, /00 HS-PGP "SAMUI"; 5059-55067, /01 HS-PGO "ANGKOR"), (PEB) LEASED 2001-04. RETURNED. 125Y.
0 717-231 (BR715) (5030-55074, /00 HS-PGR "LUANG PRABANG;" 5045-55081, /00 HS-PGQ "SUKHOTHAI"), EX-(TWA), (TBC) LEASED 2002-10. +2 ORDERS. 55081 RETURNED TO LESSOR 2009-11. 55074; RETURNED. 125Y.
2 A319-131 (2634, HS-PPF; 2664, HS-PPG), (BBB) & (SIL) LEASED 2013-04. 12C, 108Y.
2 A319-132 (V2524-A5) (2648, /05 HS-PPB; 2660, /06 HS-PPC), EX-N648BV 2011-11 & (N660BV), 2012-03. 138Y.
0 A319-132 (3142, HS-PGS, 2007-06), (TCI) LEASED. RETURNED.
7 A319-132 (V2524-A5) (2454, /04 HS-PGY; 3421, /08 HS-PGT "SUKHOTHAI;" 3424, /08 HS-PGX "HIROSHIMA;" 3454, /08 HS-PGY "ANGKOR WAT;" 3694, HS-PGZ, 2008-11; 3759, /09 HS-PGN "LUANG PRABANG;" 3911, /09 HS-PPA "SI SATCHANALAI"), (ILF) LEASED. 144CY.
4 A320-200 (V2527-A5). 162Y.
2 A320-232 (V2527-A5) (2254, /04 HS-PGU "GUILIN;" 2310, /04 HS-PGV "KRABI;" 2509, /05 HS-PGW "SAMUI" - SEE PHOTO - "PGB-A320-2008-04"), (DEA) LSD. 2509; WET-LEASED TO (SRA). 162Y.
1 A320-232 (V2527-A5) (2417, /05 HS-PPE "MAHAMONGKOL"), EX-(PR-MAW) 2012-11. 162Y.
1 A320-232 (V2527-A5) (2531, /05 HS-PPD), EX-(D-ATAA) 2012-12. 162Y.
0 ORDERS (2015-02) A350-800 (TRENT XWB-74), 2 CLASS, 36C, 222Y (4 ORDERS CANCELLED):
0 ATR 42-320 (PW120) (078 RETURNED 2001-07).
0 ATR 72-202 (PW124B) (450, /95 HS-PGE; 452, /95 HS-PGC; 455, /95 HS-PGD; ), (GIE0 LEASED 1995-11, 455 RETURNED 2004-08, LEASED TO (PRT). 450; & 452; RETURNED. 70Y.
0 ATR 72-212 (PW127) (373; 469, /95 HS-PGH), ATR LEASED 1998-12. 373 RETURNED ATR 2003-01. 469 RETURNED 2003-07. 70Y.
8 ATR 72-500 (PW127) (477, HS-PGF) FOR SIEM REAP (SRA) OPERATIONS 2001-05. (670, /01 HS-PGL "PHA NGAN" W/O IN ACCDT - - AUGUST 2009 - - SEE PHOTO - - "PGB-ACCDT-ATR72-2009-08;" 680, /01 HS-PGK "APSARA"). 477 RTND TO ATR 2001-11. (692, /02 HS-PGG "CHANG;" 700, /02 HS-PGF "HUA HIN"). (704, /03 HS-PGM "TAO;" 708, /03 HS-PGB "PHUKET;" 710, /03 HS-PGA "KUT;" 715, /04 HS-PGC "NANGYUANG"; 833, /08 HS-PGD). 70Y.
2 +8 ORDERS ATR 72-600 (PW127) (HS-PZA; 1345, /16 HS-PZG, 2016-08), 70Y.
DR PUTTIPONG PRASARTTONG-OSOTH, PRESIDENT (OWNS 92.31%).
THAVATVONG THANASUMITRA, SENIOR VP FINANCE.
CHRISTOPHE CLARENC, SENIOR VP MAINTENANCE & ENGINEERING.
PRADIT THEEKAKUL, SENIOR VP ADMINISTRATION.
CAPTAIN PUTTIPONG PRASARTTONG-OSOTH, SENIOR VP FLIGHT OPERATIONS.
PETER WIESNER, SENIOR VP NETWORK MANAGEMENT.
On photo taken 2017-10 of BKK to PQC, Peter is 1st gentleman on RHS.
VARONG ISRASENA NA AYUDHYA, VP SALES.
On photo taken 2017-10 of BKK to PQC, Varasong is 3rd gentleman from Right.
CAPTAIN LAURENT MARCOUX, SENIOR DIRECTOR FLIGHT OPERATIONS.
CAPTAIN PANYA CHANDRASAKHA, DIRECTOR FLIGHT OPERATIONS.
CAPTAIN KORCHOK PANYAVUT, FLIGHT STANDARDS MANAGER.
CAPTAIN DECHA KUPKITAPHUN, CHIEF PILOT.
F/O SURAPOL BUMRUNGKUL, FLIGHT SAFETY MANAGER.
CHAROON PEETONG, VP AIRPORTS.
SUNEERAT WATTANAWIMAKUL, VP MARKETING EUROPE & SCANDINAVIA.
M L NANDHIKA VARAVARN, SENIOR PUBLIC RELATIONS DIRECTOR.
TONGSOOK CHOMPUNUCH, DIRECTOR MAINTENANCE & ENGINEERING (9/00).
PRASIT PONGSUWAN, TECHNICAL QUALITY ASSURANCE (QA) MANAGER (4/01).
KANTINAN THAVARAWUTH, PLANNING MANAGER (2000-09).
SUDHAM YAMSKULNA, POWER PLANT MANAGER (2000-09).
METHI WONGSAKUL, ENGINEERING MANAGER (2000-09).
MS NATTAPAT PORNANOTHAI, LOGISTICS MANAGER (2001-04).