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SKM-2013-07 - 6 TOP SKYMARK AIRPORTS
SKM-2014-01 - A380 VERTICAL TAIL
SKM-2015-05 - Two A380s at Toulouse.jpg
FORMED IN 1996 AND STARTED OPERATIONS IN 1998. DOMESTIC, REGIONAL & INTERNATIONAL, SCHEDULED & CHARTER, PASSENGER & CARGO, JET AIRPLANE SERVICES.
3-5-7 HANEDA AIRPORT
OTA-KU, TOKYO PREF 144-0041, JAPAN
JAPAN WAS ESTABLISHED IN 660, IT COVERS AN AREA OF 377,815, SQ KM, ITS POPULATION IS 125 MILLION, ITS CAPITAL CITY IS TOKYO, AND ITS OFFICIAL LANGUAGE IS JAPANESE.
NOVEMBER 1997: HIDEO SAWADA, CHAIRMAN (45 YEAR OLD). JUN-ICHI OHKAWARA, PRESIDENT (42 YEAR OLD). SKYMARK AIRLINES (SKM) IS OWNED BY TRAVEL AGENT, "HIS CO LTD," WHO HAVE A 33% STAKE.
2 ORDERS (JULY 1998) 767-3Q8ER'S (27616; 27617), (ILF) 8 YEAR LEASED.
MARCH 1998: CIVIL AVIATION BUREAU OF JAPAN INCREASED EXTENDED TWIN-ENGINE OPERATIONS (ETOPS) APPROVAL FROM 120 TO 180 MINUTES.
MAY 1998: NEW FIVE STAR LOGO WITH ELLIPTICAL FIGURE FOR EXCELLENCE, AND AROUND-THE-WORLD SERVICE, FOR FIVE CONTINENTS: ASIA, NORTH & SOUTH AMERICA, EUROPE, AND AUSTRALIA.
JULY 1998: Y YOSHIZUMI, MANAGING DIRECTOR & SENIOR VP; Y KANAGAKI, VP & GENERAL MANAGER FLIGHT OPERATIONS & MAINTENANCE; M OMORI, VP MAINTENANCE PLANNING; K MATSUMOTO, VP INFORMATION SYSTEMS OPERATIONS.
IN SEPTEMBER 1998, TO FUKUOKA, KYUSHU ISLAND (767-300, 309 PAX).
AUGUST 1998: SKYMARK AIRLINES (SKM) IS THE 1ST NEW JAPANESE AIRLINE IN 35 YEARS, RECEIVES 767-300ER (GE), 309 PAX, (ILF) LEASED.
SEPTEMBER 1998: STARTS OPERATIONS TO FUKUOKA. COMPLETELY SOLD OUT WITH REGULAR FARE 50% LESS THAN ALL NIPPON (ANA), JAPAN AIRLINES (JAL), AND JAPAN AIR SYSTEM (JAA).
767-3Q8ER IS PAINTED WITH "DIRECT TV - ENTERTAINMENT FLIGHT" ON FUSELAGE.
OCTOBER 1998: 2ND 767-3Q8ER (27617), (ILF) LEASED DELIVERY WITH FUSELAGE PAINTED WITH "MICROSOFT" MARKINGS.
DECEMBER 1998: HAD 83.5% LF (LOAD FACTOR) FOR OCTOBER/NOVEMBER.
FEBRUARY 1999: PLANS TO ADD OSAKA - FUKUOKA & OSAKA - SAPPORO.
APRIL 1999: BIG DISCOUNTS: -31% OSAKA - SAPPORO; -36% OSAKA - FUKUOKA. ORIGINAL TOKYO - FUKUOKA IS ONE OF HIGHEST VOLUME ROUTES IN THE WORLD.
NOVEMBER 1999: AFTER OFFERING DISCOUNTS & FOCUSING ON THE POPULAR TOKYO - FUKUOKA ROUTE, SKYMARK AIRLINES (SKM) ENJOYED 70 TO 85% LF (LOAD FACTOR), FOR 1ST 7 MONTHS, BUT THEN JAPAN'S MAJOR AIRLINES MOUNTED A COUNTER-ATTACK, & IN APRIL - JUNE 1999, (SKM) DROPPED TO 50% LF LOAD FACTOR.
IN APRIL 1999, NEW OSAKA - SAPPORO OPENED WITH 70% DISCOUNT, BUT AGAIN THIS WAS MATCHED, AND RESULTED IN ONLY 40% LF FOR 1ST 3 MONTHS. NOW CONSIDER (SKM) ONLY HAS 4% OF TOKYO - FUKUOKA MARKET.
NEW ROUTE TOKYO - OSAKA, BUT TO SURVIVE, (SKM) NEEDS INTERNATIONAL ROUTES.
JANUARY 2000: PLANS INTERNATIONAL SERVICE BY MID-2001. TO START CHARTER SERVICE THIS YEAR FUKUOKA TO SEOUL AND GUAM. PLANS FOR +767-300ER'S BY THE END OF 2000.
FEBRUARY 2000: 1ST INTERNATIONAL FLIGHT FUKUOKA - SEOUL IN MARCH 2001 (767-300). PROJECTS 150-200 INTERNATIONAL CHARTER FLIGHTS IN 2001.
APRIL 2000: 356 EMPLOYEES (INCLUDING 28 FLIGHT CREW (FC)).
LAST 6 MONTHS = -1.73 BILLION YEN, AVERAGING 67% ON ITS 3 ROUTES: TOKYO - FUKUOKA 80%; OSAKA - SAPPORO 56%; & OSAKA - FUKUOKA 49%.
1999 FISCAL YEAR (FY) = -4.26 BILLION YEN.
JULY 2000: 767-3Q8ER (27616, JA767A) HAS REPAINTED ITS FUSELAGE, REMOVING "DIRECT TV" AND ADDING "DO YOU YAHOO" AND "www.yahoo.co.jp."
FISCAL YEAR (FY) 1999 = -$40.9 MILLION.
AUGUST 2000: IN SPRING 2001, CHARTER FLIGHTS FROM FUKUOKA TO SEOUL, WITH FURTHER EXPANSION TO TAIWAN, GUAM AND SAIPAN.
IN 2ND QUARTER, SKYMARK AIRLINES (SKM) DISPATCH RELIABILITY = 89%, WORST OF ALL JAPANESE AIRLINES. JAPAN AIR SYSTEM (JAS) WAS BEST WITH 98%.
NOVEMBER 2000: 767-3Q8ER (JA767B) NOW HAS "J-PHONE" ON FUSELAGE IN PLACE OF MICROSOFT ADVERT.
JANUARY 2001: IN MARCH 2001 TO SOUTHERN KYUSHU.
APRIL 2001: 356 EMPLOYEES (INCLUDING 28 FLIGHT CREW (FC)).
AUGUST 2001: IN APRIL 2002, TOKYO HANEDA TO KAGOSHIMA, IN SOUTH ISLAND OF KYUSHU, AFTER IT RECEIVES ITS 3RD 767-300ER. CURRENTLY, OPERATES 6 ROUND-TRIPS BETWEEN TOKYO AND FUKUOKA, IN KYUSHU.
SEPTEMBER 2001: PLANS TO LAUNCH INTERNATIONAL SERVICE TO SOUTH KOREA & EXPAND ITS DOMESTIC NETWORK TO KYUSHU, NIIGATA, AND OKINAWA.
APRIL 2002: TOKYO (HANEDA) TO KAGOSHIMA.
FISCAL YEAR (FY) 2001 = -$6.6 MILLION.
July 2002: As a result of the Japan Airlines (JAL)/(JAS) merger, Skymark Airlines (SKM) gets 3 landing slots at Tokyo Haneda domestic airport, to increase number of flights linking Tokyo and Kagoshima in the southern island of Kyushu.
1st 6 months = -$6.1 million.
August 2002: Starts 1st international route, Tokyo (Haneda) to Seoul (ICN) (weekly).
September 2002: 2nd Quarter = -1.65 billion yen/-$13.5 million: -51.1% (FTK) freight traffic.
November 2002: Applies for Tokyo (HND), to Aomori/Tokushima to start in April 2003.
1 order (April 2003) 767-300ER, leased.
December 2002: Fiscal Year (FY) 2001 = -JPY1.1 billion/-$9 million (-JPY896 million).
In April 2003, Tokyo (Haneda) - Aomori, and Haneda - Tokushima.
767-3Q8ER (JA767B) now painted in "USEN Broadband Networks" banner color scheme.
February 2003: Masayuki Inoue, President, 41, ex-British Airways (BAB) replaces Takashi Ide, 49, now Vice Chairman.
April 2003: 549 employees.
767-300ER (30847), GECAS (GEF) leased (was to have gone to Lequios (LQS) but they cancelled plans for start up).
June 2003: Projects Fiscal Year (FY) 2002 - 2003 = -Y640 million.
767-281 (23434, JA8255), All Nippon Airways (ANA) wet-leased.
September 2003: 2002 = 1,132 million (RPK) traffic (+22.1%); 1.1 million passengers (PAX).
2002 TOP WORLD AIRLINES TRAFFIC (RPK) (Million):
196 (MAK) 1,203; 197 (CEB) 1,192; 198 (OMR) 1,189; 199 (FLYBE) 1,189; 200 (ARK) 1,174; 201 (SKM) 1,132; 202 (LUX) 1,104; 203 (ACE) 1,087; 204 (BMR) 1,051; 205 (TRX) 1,000; 206 (CRH) 983; 207 (NOD) 972; 208 (JAT) 972; 209 (ASY) 969; 210 (GHN) 942.
December 2003: 2002 = -Y 790 million/-$7.27 million, due to foreign exchange losses and the cost of a new share issue. Last 6 months Pre-tax = +Y 490 million (+$4.51 million) (1st +ve!).
May 2004: 549 employees.
July 2004: 475 employees.
Expects Fiscal Year (FY) 2003 = +Y 0.13 million (+44%) (1st +ve!).
2 orders (November 2005) 737-800's, GECAS (GEF) 8-year leased to launch Tokyo (Haneda) - Kitakyushu/Kobe routes.
March 2005: 767-38EER (30840, JA767F), ex-Asiana Airlines (AAR), GECAS (GEF) leased.
June 2005: 726 employees (including 51 Flight Crew (FC); 153 Cabin Attendants (CA); & 82 Maintenance Technicians (MT)).
December 2005: 737-86N (34247, JA737H), (GEF) leased.
January 2006: 737-86N (34249, JA737K), (GEF) leased.
February 2006: Japan has opened its 97th airport at Kobe, the site of a devastating earthquake 11 years ago. The $2.6 billion airport will be used by Japan's three air carriers - - Japan Airlines (JAS), All Nippon Airways (ANA), and Skymark Airlines (SKM) - - for domestic flights from its single 8,250-ft runway. Kobe city expects 3.19 million passengers in its first full year of operation, and it is hoped the airport will help rebuild an economy devastated by the January 1995 force 7.2 quake that killed more than 6,400 people. The airport has been dubbed "Marine Air" in Japan, as it is built on reclaimed land with a view of the ocean. It is the second major airport to be opened in the country in the past 12 months, with Chubu Centrair International Airport beginning operations near the city of Nagoya in February 2005. The Kobe airport opening is expected to increase pressure on nearby Kansai International Airport, which has suffered a fall in domestic flights in the past year, in addition to the Japan Railways, which is planning to add three bullet trains between Tokyo and Kobe from late March in a bid to stay competitive.
Meantime, a report by Japan's Bureau of Audit found that many recently-opened regional airports were struggling to meet passenger forecasts. These included Noto Airport, which opened in 2003 off Hokkaido Island and is currently handling 151,000 passengers, less than half the initial estimates, and Odate-Noshiro Airport, which opened the same year in northern Japan and is handling less than a quarter of initial estimates.
June 2006: Skymark Airlines (SKM) is in the process of replacing its 767 fleet with 737s. The airline already took delivery of 2 737-800s and still operates 6 767-300s which are to leave the fleet by 2009, at which point the airline plans on operating 9 737-800s with 2 more arriving by 2011.
737-86N (32694, JA737L), (GEF) leased.
September 2006: Skymark Airlines (SKM) is set to join the 787 club, according to sources at the Japanese carrier. Skymark (SKM), which operates five 767-300ERs, has advised Japan's Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport that it will add four 787s between 2010 and 2012. It operates a 10-times-daily shuttle service from Tokyo Haneda (HND) to Sapporo and Fukuoka in addition to four-times-daily flights to Kobe and twice-daily service to Naha. It is expected to be granted additional slots at (HND) when the fourth runway is opened in 2009.
October 2006: Boeing (TBC)'s Web-based Maintenance Performance Toolbox will be used by Skymark Airlines (SKM) of Japan for its three 737NGs.
December 2006: 737-86N (32683, JA737M), (GEF) leased.
August 2007: 737-8HK (36845, JA737N), Aviation Capital Group (CGP) leased.
December 2007: 1 order 737-800, BOC Aviation (SIL) leased.
January 2008: 737-8HX (29681, JA737P), Aviation Capital Group (CGP) leased.
February 2008: AirAsia X (ASX) confirmed the sale of 10% stakes to Bahrain-based Manara Consortium and Japan's Orix Corporation for a combined MYR250 million/$77.2 million cash consideration. Each investor will receive approximately 16.7 million newly issued shares of common stock. Orix also holds a stake in Skymark Airlines (SKM).
April 2008: Skymark Airlines (SKM) of Japan transported 3.7 million passengers last year, up +26% from 2006, while load factor soared +13.5 points to 77.2% LF, the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation reported.
767-3Q8ER (29390), returned to (ILF), leased to Rossiya (SDM).
May 2008: Japan's Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport announced the following policies that will take effect when Tokyo Haneda's fourth runway opens in 2010, the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation reported: Night curfew will be reduced to 10 pm from 11 pm, to "allow more convenient schedules for USA and European flights," international slots will be restricted to 30,000 until October 2010, and eventually will increase to 60,000, with new slots going to "expansion of Asian city routes where business need is strongest," and domestic slots will double to 20,000 annually.
August 2008: 767-3Q8ER (27617), returned to (ILF) as (N151LF).
December 2008: Skymark Airlines (SKM) expects to post a -¥2.1 billion/-$22.6 million loss in the fiscal year ending March 31, but should return to profit the following year, President, Shinichi Nishikubo told "Bloomberg News." (SKM) expects to return two leased 767s, helping it cut costs and boost net earnings to approximately +¥2.6 billion in the 2009 to 2010 fiscal year. It is reconfiguring its fleet around the 737 and plans to operate 11 by the end of the current Fiscal Year (FY).
March 2009: The Japanese economy shrank -13% last quarter, the most since 1974.
737-8Q8 (35290, JA737T), (ILF) leased.
April 2009: 737-8FZ (29680, JA737U), (BBB) leased.
June 2009: MC Aviation Partners, a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Corporation, placed a firm order for two 737-800s valued at $153 million that will be leased to Skymark Airlines (SKM).
767-38EER (30840), returned to (GEF) and leased to JetAirFly (TUB).
November 2009: BOC Aviation (SIL) delivered one new 737-8AL (36692, JA737X) on long-term lease to Skymark Airlines (SKM), its first delivery to a Japanese carrier.
December 2009: Delta (DAL) TechOps signed a five-year agreement with Skymark Airlines (SKM) to provide (CFM56-7B) maintenance in partnership with Evergreen Aviation Technologies.
737-8FZ (29663, JA737Y), Babcock (BBB) leased.
June 2010: 737-82Y (40712, JA737Z), (MCAP) leased.
August 2010: 737-8HX (36849, JA73NA), delivery.
September 2010: Skymark Airlines (SKM), Japan’s largest low cost
carrier (LCC), is rapidly expanding its fleet in preparation for
the opening of Tokyo Haneda Airport's fourth runway and in
advance of expected competition from All Nippon Airways (ANA).
(ANA) announced on September 9 that it is establishing a (LCC) to be based at Osaka Kansai International Airport.
Skymark (SKM) has 14 737-800s and plans to have 18 at year-end and 23 at the end of 2011, says (SKM) CFO, Masakazu Arimori. These will be leased 737-800s, he says. Arimori says (SKM) has been granted four more daily slots at Haneda from October onward. Starting that month, it will launch services on the Haneda - Kumamoto, Haneda - Kagoshima,
Kobe - Kumamoto, and Kobe - Nagasaki routes, he says. “Our current business model fundamentally stands [at] setting Haneda airport as the main hub.”
Haneda’s fourth runway is due to open in October, and services to Haneda are highly sought-after in the market, says Arimori. But he adds that “with our cost structure, we foresee domestic routes not destined for Haneda having potential to be profitable as well.”
(SKM) launched international charter services in September from Haneda to Guam. “We plan to operate scheduled service to the international market in near future” to destinations in Asia and the west Pacific, says Arimori, who declined to elaborate.
737-8FZ (31743, JA73NC), Babcock (BBB) leased and 737-8HX (36848, JA73NB), (ACG) leased deliveries.
November 2010: Skymark Airlines (SKM) announced to Tokyo media it is ordering four A380s, with options for two more, according to multiple reports. Airbus (EDS) lists its catalog price for an A380 at $346.3 million each.
The Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA) said Skymark (SKM) plans to introduce the A380 in its fiscal year commencing April 2014 and will sign a purchase agreement next spring. Two airplanes will be delivered in 2015, followed by two in 2016.
In a statement, (SKM) said, “Skymark Airlines (SKM) will continue pursuing efficient operations and make efforts to improve customers’ convenience by introducing A380s and offering low-cost flights through long-haul mass transportation.”
(SKM) currently operates only domestic flights aboard 15 737s and said it plans to introduce international flights in fiscal year 2014 to destinations it has not yet announced, according to "Agence France Presse." (CAPA) said (SKM) plans to use the A380s initially on domestic services and then on its long-haul services.
737-8FZ (33440, JA73ND), Babcock (BBB) leased.
December 2010: 737-82Y (40713, JA73NE), (MCAP) leased, ex-(N1787B) delivery.
January 2011: Skymark Airlines (SKM) had an excellent calendar fourth quarter. Net profit was +$48 million and operating margin was a sky-high 21%. (SKM) is aggressively taking advantage of extreme downsizing by bankrupt rival Japan Airlines (JAL)/(JAS) as well as new capacity at Tokyo Haneda. It’s also benefiting from capacity cuts in Osaka, which helps its nearby Kobe base. Overall, (SKM) increased capacity +29% last quarter and added two more 737-800s. (SKM) might eventually go abroad, starting with nearby destinations and ultimately — if its lofty ambitions are realized — Europe and North America with A380s. That, however, is several years away.
February 2011: Skymark Airlines (SKM), Japan’s third largest and fast growing airline, signed a contract for four A380s with Airbus (EDS), firming up a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) announced in November 2010.
The contract was signed on 17th February, during a ceremony held at Airbus (EDS)’ headquarters in Toulouse, France, in the presence of Skymark Airlines (SKM) President, Shinichi Nishikubo, Airbus (EDS) President & CEO, Tom Enders, and (EDS) Chief Operating Officer Customers, John Leahy, together with Airbus Japan CEO, Stephane Ginoux.
Today, Singapore Airlines (SIA), Lufthansa (DLH), and Air France (AFA) operate the airplane on daily services to Narita Airport. Starting from March 27, 2011, (SIA) will extend its A380 operation from Narita to Los Angeles, while Korean Air (KAL)’s first A380 service to Narita is scheduled on June 1 this year.
Following this announcement, the total firm orders for the A380 stand at 244 from 19 customers worldwide and 43 airplanes have been delivered to five customers.
(IASCO) Global Pte Ltd is currently recruiting 737-800 flight crew (FC) Captains for Skymark Airlines (SKM). Applicants can contact David Hurd at firstname.lastname@example.org with additional questions or to submit their resume. Minimum qualifications are available at http://www.FltOps.com.
April 2011: Skymark Airlines (SKM) said it plans to operate a low fare "Narita Shuttle" service starting in November. (SKM) reportedly will operate daily frequencies from Tokyo Narita (NRT) to Japanese domestic destinations. According to press reports, Skymark (SKM) President, Shinichi Nishikubo told a Tokyo news conference that "there is a big potential demand" for low fares (NRT) domestic service. He said the operation could include as many as 25 daily flights to nine destinations by 2014. Initial flights will be to Naha, Sapporo and Asahikawa, according to "Kyodo News."
June 2011: Boeing (TBC) has added Skymark Airlines (SKM) to its 737 Component Services Program. "The program can help airlines save as much as -30% on inventory, repair and administrative costs," (TBC) said. (SKM), which launched operations in 1998, operates a fleet of 19 737-800s and will take additional airplanes on lease during the coming months.
Another order at the tail end of the Paris Air Show boosted the order book for the A380. Skymark Airlines (SKM) placed orders for two more A380s, which brings its total commitment to six airplanes. (SKM) plans to start operations with the A380 on international routes linking Tokyo Narita to destinations in Europe and the USA.
July 2011: Skymark Airlines (SKM) provides scheduled passenger jet airplane services over Japan's domestic routes linking Tokyo Haneda with Asahikawa, Chitose, Fukoka, Kobe, and Okinawa, plus international charter flights to Seoul.
Employees = 1,081.
(IATA) Code: BC. (ICAO) Code: SKY (Callsign - SKYMARK).
Parent organization/shareholders: Shinichi Nishikubo (52%); (HIS) Travel Group (14.4%); & others (33.6%).
Alliances: Japan Airlines Domestic (JAS).
Main Base: Tokyo International airport (HND).
Domestic, Scheduled Destinations: Asahikawa; Chitose; Fukuoka; Kagoshima; Kobe; Okinawa; Osaka; Tokushima; & Tokyo.
August 2011: (GE) Capital Aviation Services Limited (GECAS) (GEC) announced delivery of two new 737-800 airplanes leased to Skymark Airlines (SKM).
With bases at Tokyo International Airport and Kobe Airport, (SKM) now operates a fleet of 20 737-800s to 12 destinations in Japan.
September 2011: Rolls-Royce (RRC) has signed a letter of intent (LOI) with Skymark Airlines (SKM) to provide (Trent 900) engines to power six A380 airplanes, including TotalCare® long-term engine service and support. The airplanes will enter into service in 2014.
Skymark (SKM) is a new customer for Rolls-Royce (RRC), and (SKM) is the first in Japan to order the A380. (Trent 900) engines powered the very first A380 to enter service in 2007 and have now been selected by 11 of 16 airlines who have ordered the airplane.
November 2011: A strong local currency relative to the US dollar helped Skymark Airlines (SKM) to an incredible 30% operating margin for the peak July - September quarter, producing a +$47 million net profit as revenues increased +46% on +49% capacity (ASK)s, while operating expenses increased +45%.
December 2011: Skymark Airlines (SKM) starts Tokyo Narita (NRT) to Naha (Okinawa) and in February to Fukuoka.
January 2012: Skymark Airlines (SKM), which had a great year in 2011, kicks off 2012 with a new market (Kobe near Osaka) for its Tokyo Narita Shuttle product. It’s also adding a second daily flight from Kobe, one of its bases, to Ibaraki airport outside Tokyo. (SKM)'s Narita expansion precedes a flood of new Low Cost Carrier (LCC) capacity by Peach (PCA) (backed by (ANA)), AirAsia Japan, (also backed by (ANA)) and Jetstar Japan (backed by Japan Airlines (JAL)/(JAS)). But (SKM) also sees its buildup at Narita as a way to acquire slots and build future feed traffic in advance of its own ambitious launch of A380 service later this decade.
(IASCO) Global Pte. Ltd. is currently recruiting 737-800 Flight Crew (FC) pilots for Skymark Airlines (SKM) and expects hiring to continue through 2012. Applicants should be experienced Captains with (ICAO) (ATPL) with a 737 type rating and have at least 750+ hours Captain in the 737 with a total time (TT) of 5000+ hours for a February 2012 class. Details and applications are available on www.iasco-global.com Applicants can contact David Hurd at email@example.com with additional questions or to submit a resume. See FltOps.com and FAPA.aero.
737-86N (38023, JA73NK), (GEF) leased.
February 2012: Skymark Airlines (SKM) continues to expand its Japanese domestic network with the introduction from 1 February of double daily flights between Tokyo Narita (NRT) and Fukuoka (FUK) with its 737-800s. Direct competition is provided by (ANA) and (JAL) who both operate the route with each three daily flights. This becomes (SKM)’s fifth domestic route from Narita in addition to the eight domestic destinations it serves non-stop from Tokyo Haneda, including Fukuoka. Competition between Tokyo Haneda and Fukuoka is intense, with both (ANA) and (JAL) operating around 120 weekly departures each, (SKM) a further 70, and StarFlyer (STF) an additional 35.
737-8HX (38104, JA73NL), Aviation Capital Group (GCP) leased, and 737-81D (39421, JA73NM), delivery.
March 2012: Skymark Airlines (SKM) has launched double-daily flights between its bases at Tokyo Narita (NRT) and Kobe (UKB) using 177Y-seat 737-800s, of which it currently operates 24. This is (SKM)’s eighth domestic route from the off-shore island airport that serves Kobe, and makes it by far the biggest carrier at the airport, now operating some 27 daily departures. On three of the eight routes competition is provided by All Nippon Airways (ANA). This is now also Skymark (SKM)’s fifth route at Tokyo Narita, from where it was already serving Asahikawa, Fukuoka, Okinawa, and Sapporo.
May 2012: Evergreen Aviation Technologies (EVR) has renewed an airframe maintenance contract with Skymark Airlines (SKM), extending the agreements through until 2017.
July 2012: Skymark Airlines (SKM) inaugurated seasonal services to two domestic destinations from Okinawa (OKA) in southern Japan. On 13 July, services were launched to Ibaraki (IBR) north of Tokyo. A week later, on 20 July, (SKM) inaugurated a new route to Kitakyushu (KKJ) in the Fukuoka prefecture. Both routes are offered with daily frequencies and operated with (SKM)’s fleet of 737-800s until the end of September and August, respectively.
November 2012: Skymark Airlines (SKM), Japan's third-largest domestic carrier, is switching its first A380 2014 destination from London to New York in a bid to improve profitability amidst an atmosphere of economic uncertainty in Europe that shows no signs of relenting. But (SKM) has far more work ahead of it, and success from its A380 operation seems an elusive goal. (SKM) faces significant hurdles in three key areas: network, partnerships and airplane configuration.
An entirely domestic carrier, (SKM) accounts for only 5% of domestic Japanese seats, limiting feed opportunities. It has no earnest partnerships of its own despite much-bigger All Nippon Airways (ANA) and Japan Airlines (JAL)/(JAS) having joint-ventures across the Pacific and to Europe that deliver far greater traffic opportunities and a larger customer pool. Finally, Skymark (SKM) intends to have the least dense A380 with a mere 394 seats in all premium economy (PY) and business (C) configuration – and aims to have an average load factor of 60% LF, requiring tickets to be sold at yields too high to see profitable take up.
December 2012: Skymark Airlines (SKM) selected the Rolls-Royce (RRC) (Trent 900) engine to power six A380s it has on order.
The order is worth $1 billion at list prices and includes TotalCare service support; (SKM) had signed a letter of intent (LOI) for the engines in September 2011. (SKM) has also signed a (LOI) for (Trent 700) engines to power up to 10 leased A330s, making it the first carrier in Japan to select both (Trent) engine types.
Both aircraft types are slated to enter service for (SKM) in 2014.
Two engine types are available to power the A380; (RRC)’s (Trent 900) and the Engine Alliance (GP7000). The A330 has the option of three engine types; the General Electric (CF6), the Pratt & Whitney (PRW) (PW4000) and the (RRC) (Trent 700).
February 2013: Skymark Airlines (SKM) inaugurated daily services on the 1,400 km domestic route from Sapporo (CTS) to Fukuoka (FUK), on 1 February. Flights from Japan’s fourth-largest city, host of the Sapporo Snow Festival, which draws millions from all around the world, is now linked to the southern Japanese Fukuoka using a 737-800. Competition on the route comes from (JAL) and (ANA), which operate respectively twice- and single-weekly services.
April 2013: Skymark Airlines (SKM) on 20 April, began two new routes from Sendai (SDJ), the capital of the Miyagi Prefecture, to Fukuoka (FUK), situated on the northern coast of Kyushu Island, and Sapporo Chitose (CTS), Japan’s fourth largest city. The former will be flown twice-daily by (SKM) in competition with three airlines – Ibex Airlines (42 weekly), (JAL)’s regional subsidiary J-Air (14) and (ANA) (7). Competition will be fiercer for (SKM) on the Sendai - Sapporo city pair, with the three incumbents offering 119 weekly flights between them (Air Nippon Network, the subsidiary feeder airline for (ANA) (28 weekly), fellow low cost carrier (LCC) Air Do (HIA) (56) and J-Air (35). Both routes will be operated by the (SKM)'s 737-800s.
June 2013: 737-86N (38046, JA73NU), (GEF) leased.
July 2013: Skymark Airlines (SKM) commenced operations on the 930 km route from Tokyo Haneda (HND) to Asahikawa (AKJ) on July 1. Also on the same day, (SKM) connected Ibaraki (IBR) on the main island of Honshu and Okinawa (OKA) in the south of the country. Both routes are offered with daily frequencies and operated using winglet-equipped 737-800s. (JAL) (28 weekly flights), AirDo (HIA) (21) and (ANA) (21) provide competition on the route from Tokyo.
Softening financials and profit downgrades are beginning to reflect strategic weakness at Skymark (SKM), Japan's third-largest airline that is still an entirely domestic-only carrier – but with significant expansion plans that over the next two years includes introducing A330 and A380 airplanes. Skymark (SKM) increasingly looks caught in the middle of, at the top end, full-service carriers All Nippon Airways (ANA) and Japan Airlines (JAL)/(JAS), which have wide networks, affording them considerable scale. That is something Skymark (SKM) (one quarter the size of (JAL), and less than a fifth the size of (ANA)) cannot match.
At the bottom end are Japan's new-entry low-cost carriers (LCC)s that are much smaller than Skymark (SKM) but growing with a lower cost base. (SKM) cannot match the low-cost of the (LCC)s or the premium and network advantages of (ANA) and (JAL). It has succeeded so far in securing slots at the convenient Tokyo airport of Haneda, but this advantage is drying up.
While (SKM) management has a mindset worlds away from the bloated legacy views that brought (JAL) into bankruptcy, (SKM) has yet to capitalise on this to become an efficient hybrid carrier open to global partnerships – a possibility that could re-define Asian aviation.
Skymark Airlines (SKM) commenced operations to Ishigaki (ISG) in the Japanese Okinawa Prefecture on July 10th with the launch of three routes, all of which are operated with at least daily frequencies. Interestingly, the new Ishigaki Airport was inaugurated on March 7th 2013, replacing an older facility that could not accommodate larger airplanes due to infrastructure limitations (1,500 meter runway):
* Kobe (UKB) to Ishigaki (ISG) 7x weekly 737-800;
* Okinaka (OKA) to Ishigaki (ISG) 28x wkly 737-800, vs Japan TransOcean Air 63 wkly & (ANA) 56x wkly;
+ Tokyo Narita (NRT) to Ishigaki (ISG) 7x wkly.
Launched back in 1998 shortly after the deregulation of the Japanese airline industry, Skymark Airlines (SKM) operates a network of domestic services using its fleet of 31 737-800s. However, the 2011 deal with Airbus for the delivery of six A380s and a further lease agreement for seven A330-300s indicates (SKM)’s shift towards premium and long-haul services. It has already applied for traffic rights to fly to London Heathrow and New York (JFK), once the Superjumbos are delivered (August 2014 as of July 2013), while the A330s (scheduled to join (SKM)’s fleet in 2014 and 2015) will be used on domestic trunk routes.
According to the airline’s website, (SKM) carried around 4.4 million passengers in 2012. 7.5 million seats were offered by (SKM) over the same period of time, placing average load factors around the 58% LF mark – if true, not a great result for a Low Cost Carrier (LCC).
(SKM) has been consistently increasing its capacity over the last five years, including the doubling of seats offered in 2011 when compared to 2010. Figures for the first six months of 2013 indicate downward capacity adjustments in the current year.
Data for August 2013 shows that Skymark (SKM) operates to a total of 15 Japanese airports. Compared to the same period of 2012, the airline has withdrawn its presence from two airports (Osaka Kansai (previously served thrice-daily from Okinawa and Sapporo, and daily from Asahikawa) and Kitakyushu (daily from Okinawa and Tokyo Haneda)).
SEE ATTACHED CHART - - "SKM-2013-07 - 6 TOP SKYMARK AIRPORTS."
In August 2013, Tokyo Haneda remains Skymark (SKM)’s largest operational airport, commanding 24% of (SKM)’s frequencies and seats (as a result of the uniform fleet, both values are equal for all airports the airline operates to). However, it is the airline’s #2 airport, Okinawa, which has the most served destinations (10).
While Japan has seen significant activity from (LCC)s in the recent years, Skymark (SKM) has largely been sheltered from their impact, at least on its largest routes. Instead, it competes primarily with Japan’s legacy carriers, with All Nippon Airways (ANA) providing services on seven of (SKM)’s top 10 routes, while Japan Airlines (JAS) offers additional capacity on five of them:
* Tokyo (HND) - Fukuoka: (SKM) 9,394; (ANA) 51,471; (JAS) 41,998; Others 10,430
* Tokyo (HND) - Sapporo: (SKM) 6,832; (ANA) 72,996; (JAS) 39,123;
* Tokyo (HND) - Okinawa: (SKM) 5,002; (ANA) 35,294; (JAS) 32,935;
* Sapporo - Sendai: (SKM) 4,270; (ANA) 7,336; (JAS) 2,646;
* Tokyo (HND) - Kagoshima: (SKM) 4,270; (ANA) 19,173; (JAS) 11,674; Others 5,754
* Tokyo (HND) - Kobe: (SKM) 4,270; (ANA) 4,620;
* Okinawa - Ishigaki: (SKM) 3,416; (ANA) 7,301; Others 9,450
* Kobe - Nagasaki: (SKM) 3,416.
Notably, Skymark (SKM)is not the leading operator in any of its largest markets, except for the route from Kobe to Nagasaki, on which it is the sole capacity provider. Interestingly, the 400 km route from Okinawa to Ishigaki, which launched recently with thrice-daily frequencies, is now (SKM)’s seventh largest market.
August 2013: According to FAPA.aero, (IASCO) Global Ltd is recruiting 737-800 Captains (FC) for Skymark Airlines (SKM) based in Japan.
January 2014: Skymark Airlines (SKM)’s first Airbus A380 has started to appear on the final assembly line (FAL) in Toulouse - - SEE PHOTO - - "SKM-2014-01 - A380 VERTICAL TAIL." According to Airbus (EDS), the vertical tailplane has been painted with (SKM)’s logo at Airbus’ facilities in Hamburg and transported by Beluga to Toulouse, where final assembly of the airplane is now underway, paving the way for completion and subsequent delivery to Skymark Airlines (SKM) later this year.
(SKM) has placed six firm A380 orders, becoming the first Japanese airline to operate the type. (SKM) plans to operate its A380s on international trunk routes, in particular linking Narita to destinations in the USA.
February 2014: Airbus (EDS) has completed the structural assembly the first A380 for Japan’s Skymark Airlines (SKM). The A380 has moved to the next station at the Final Assembly Line (FAL) in Toulouse where it will undergo general tests on electric and hydraulic systems, mobile parts, landing gear and fuel tanks. Also, the A380’s four Rolls-Royce (Trent 900) engines will be mounted.
(SKM) has ordered six A380s, becoming the first Japanese airline to operate the type. (SKM) plans to operate the A380 on international trunk routes, in particular linking Narita to destinations in the USA.
(SKM) has taken delivery of the first two of 10 A330-343s (1483, JA330A; 1491, JA330B - - SEE PHOTO - - "SKM-A330-343-2014-02"), Intrepid Aviation (INL) leased, becoming the first Japanese carrier to operate the type. (SKM) will begin operating the new A330-300s on routes between Tokyo Haneda and Fukuoka in April.
April 2014: Skymark Airlines (SKM), which will receive its first A380 later this summer, has launched two more domestic routes from its base at Ibaraki (IBR) near Tokyo. On April 18th, it launched daily flights on the 360 km route to Nagoya Chubu (NGO), and twice-daily flights on the 950 km route to Fukuoka (FUK). Both routes will be operated by the airline’s 177Y-seat 737-800s. Neither route faces direct competition. Skymark (SKM) already operates non-stop flights to Sapporo Chitose and Kobe from Ibaraki.
(SKM) expects to receive its first A380-841 (0162, JA380A) in August this year to launch service in December between Tokyo Narita and New York (JFK). The upper deck will have 114 business (C) class "ANGLED BED" SEATS, AND THE LOWER DECK 280 premium economy shell-style "Green Seats." (SKM) has six A380s on order and additional desti9nations under consideration include Honolulu, Los Angeles, Melbourne, London, Frankfurt, and Rome. Other airlines scheduled to introduce the A380 during 2014 are Asiana (AAR), Qatar Airways (QTA), and Etihad Airways (EHD).
July 2014: Skymark Airlines (SKM), Japan’s third largest airline, has chosen Panasonic Avionics Corporation’s (‘Panasonic’) global connectivity service, eXConnect, to provide its passengers with free-of-charge in-flight Wi-Fi service.
Passengers will be able to stay on top of current events as they surf the web, keep in touch with friends and family through their social networks, and even check email and send the latest edits to their upcoming sales presentation to their colleagues – all at 35,000 feet.
For domestic routes, Skymark Airlines (SKM) will introduce this free service on its fleet of new Airbus A330s. They will also expect to offer this same free-of-charge Wi-Fi experience on their international A380 fleet that will be initially flying to North America.
Mr Shinichi Nishikubo, President & (CEO) of (SKM) said, “Our customers love in-flight Wi-Fi, and today, we are taking a strategic step forward to ensure that our passengers can be both entertained and productive everywhere our airplanes fly. We look forward to launching this extremely exciting service with our partners at Panasonic Avionics.”
A new miniskirt stewardess uniform for Skymark Airlines (SKM) that 'barely covers' female airline staff has been condemned by a cabin crew union. (SKM)'s royal blue outfit was launched recently and the length of the dress has drawn criticism with the Japan Federation of Cabin Attendants saying it is unsuitable for the work performed by cabin attendants, which includes stretching high up and kneeling down.
The uniform was introduced to mark (SKM)'s announcement that it would begin fly 10 Airbus A330-300s for the first time on its Haneda - Fukuoka flights this spring.
Airbus has informed Skymark Airlines (SKM) that its order for six A380s has been terminated. (SKM) had already disclosed that it was discussing with Airbus a possible cancellation of the 2011 order.
(SKM) (CEO) Shinichi Nishikubo said in his own statement that (SKM) had worked hard to make their USD1.7billion A380 project a reality, but given the recent economic downturn and a weak Japanese Yen to boot, had been forced to reconsider those plans. He then attempted to place the blame on Airbus (EDS)' shoulders, claiming they had not been flexible in their contractual negotiations. "Since April this year, we have been discussing amending the A380 purchase agreement with Airbus (EDS), but it has been a very tough negotiation and we still cannot find any solution satisfying each other [sic]. This is because one of their several requirements for the amendment is that we have to go under the umbrella of a major airline," he said.
Nishikubo bombastically labelled (EDS)' demand as "threatening" to (SKM)'s managerial independence, while simultaneously calling (EDS)' cancellation compensation claims of USD700 million "outrageous" and "beyond the realm of common sense."
(SKM) had said that increased competition and weaker local currency had affected the business climate since the carrier placed the order.
But it had also expressed concern that (SKM) would incur a large penalty if the order was cancelled. (SKM)'s Rolls-Royce (RRC) (Trent 900)-powered airplanes are already in production with an initial airframe having flown.
A330-343 (1542, JA330D), Skylux 7 Inc leased.
August 2014: Skymark Airlines (SKM) has introduced daily flights on the Japanese domestic route between Sendai (SDJ) and Okinawa (OKA). Service on the 1,819 km route commenced on August 9th using (SKM)’s 737-800s. The route is already served by All Nippon Airways (ANA), who also serve the route daily. This is Skymark Airlines (SKM)’s fourth route from Sendai (it also serves Fukuoka, Kobe, and Sapporo-Chitose). (SKM) now operates 26 daily flights to Okinawa from across nine airports in Japan. Of the 30 airport pairs that the airline now operates, this new route is the longest, surpassing the 1,613 km service between Tokyo Narita and Okinawa.
AirAsia Japan ((IATA) Code: JW, based at Nagoya Chu-bu) (WAJ) (CEO), Yoshinori Odagiri said (WAJ) is keeping its options open so far as rumors of a tie up with Skymark Airlines ((IATA) Coder: BC, based at Tokyo Haneda) (SKM) are concerned. Asked whether or not it was true the nascent AirAsia (ASW) subsidiary had been approached by (SKM), the struggling (LCC), Odagiri told Japan's "AviationWire" news-service: "Nothing has materialized, but we keep all doors open."
According to the "ZipanguFlyer" blog, AirAsia Japan (WAJ)'s interest in Skymark (SKM) could centre on its coveted Tokyo Haneda rights for which it currently has 36 slot pairings. Haneda slots are highly sought after by local and international carriers alike, given its closer proximity to downtown Tokyo as compared to Tokyo Narita. Recently, Skymark (SKM) announced plans to wind down its Tokyo Narita operations and focus on Haneda from October in the wake of heavy first-quarter net loss of -JPY5.8 billion/-USD56 million. (SKM) is also faced with the prospect of paying USD700 million in cancellation fess to Airbus Industrie (EDS) for its abandoned order of six A380-800s.
Despite the cancellation, (SKM) is still intent on expanding internationally with its fleet of A330-300s. (SKM) has reportedly appealed to the Japanese government to grant it midnight slots at Haneda, which would allow it to offer regional flights to Honolulu, Singapore Changi, and Thailand. The flights would allow (SKM) to better utilize its A330s which lie idle in Tokyo during the night in anticipation of the following day's domestic Japanese operations.
The granting of these slots and of the requisite traffic rights is subject to regulatory approval, however.
November 2014: Japan Airlines (JAL)/(JAS) said that Skymark Airlines (SKM) had sought talks to discuss a possible business tie-up that would put one of the country’s few remaining budget carriers under the wing of a bigger rival. “We received the request from Skymark Airlines (SKM) on the possible cooperation,” a spokesman for (JAL) said.
“We will start to discuss some possible cooperation but at the current stage, there is no decided agreement,” he added.
(SKM) would code share some flights with (JAL)/(JAS) and cooperate in sales, the "Nikkei" newspaper reported, although it said the tie-up was unlikely to involve a capital injection from (JAL)/(JAS).
Difficulty for new budget carriers in winning landing rights on lucrative routes has meant that air fares in Japan have not been subject to the same tough price competition as in many other major aviation markets.
(SKM), which began flying in 1998, had been a rare case of a small carrier in Japan able to thrive without becoming an affiliate of either (JAL)/(JAS) or Japan’s other big carrier, (ANA) Holdings.
Of the nine low-cost carriers flying within Japan, six (including Peach Aviation (PCA), Jetstar Japan (JJP) and Air Do (HIA) – are controlled by or affiliated with the two big carriers.
December 2014: Airbus (EDS) has filed a claim in a UK court to reclaim expenses caused by the Japan-based low-cost carrier (LCC) Skymark Airlines (SKM)’ “default of contract,” Skymark (SKM) spokesman, Hiroyuki Sakata said.
Airbus (EDS) terminated the (LCC)’s contract for six Airbus A380s, worth around $2 billion, in July this year. (EDS) cited problems with repayment schedules as the reason for the termination, following a missed JPY800 million/$7.8 million installment in April.
“Airbus (EDS) is beginning preparations for litigation regarding a penalty,” Sakata said, adding that talks to reach an agreement were ongoing. Local sources reported in October that the parties were close to reaching an agreement on termination conditions, but talks have apparently broken down.
At the time, an (EDS) source said that “warning bells started sounding” over Skymark (SKM)’s ability to pay at the start of the year. “We always keep a strict eye on the way any customer is progressing with payments,” they noted.
Skymark (SKM) has reportedly been in talks with various players to help ease its financial problems (it predicts a -$115 million loss for the next financial year) including implementing code share deals with Japan Airlines (JAL)/(JSA) and (ANA) to extend its network, and with external investors to take equity.
However, an Airbus (EDS) spokesperson dismissed the reports as “not being particularly sensible” options, and asserted it had not tried to influence any such deals.
January 2015: News Item A-1: Skymark Airlines (SKM) has filed for bankruptcy protection after it was unable to establish a profitable niche in an increasingly competitive Japanese market. (SKM)’s board met on the evening of January 28 to decide on the bankruptcy protection filing, according to local media reports.
President, Shinichi Nishikubo is stepping down and will be replaced by (CFO) Masakazu Arimori, (SKM) said in a filing to the Tokyo Stock Exchange. Details of the filing, 1st reported by "Reuters," also included (SKM) listing JPY71 billion/$603 million in liabilities. (SKM) will be de-listed from the exchange March 1 and will continue operating during the reorganization process. It will get support from private equity firm, Integral.
Skymark (SKM)’s financial difficulties have many causes, including a continuing dispute with Airbus (EDS) regarding penalties for the cancellation of 6 Airbus A380s. (EDS) is suing (SKM) over the issue.
Competing against the 2 dominant carriers, Japan Airlines (JAL)/(JAS) and All Nippon Airways (ANA), has been an uphill battle for Skymark (SKM), which was launched in 1998. Since 2012, the market has grown tougher, with the entry of 4 new low-cost carriers (LCCs). (SKM) has attempted to position itself as a lower-cost alternative to the majors, but has been undercut by the “true” (LCC)s.
In an effort to improve its position, (SKM) has been negotiating with both (ANA) and (JAL)/(JAS) for them to code share on some of (SKM)'s routes out of Tokyo’s Haneda Airport. This deal would allow the 2 larger carriers to gain more access to scarce Haneda slots, as well as provide more traffic for (SKM). The agreement is believed to have the backing of Japanese regulators and would begin as early as March.
(SKM) has also cut unprofitable routes (including all of its flights from Tokyo Narita Airport) and was discussing a share sale to an investment fund.
(SKM) operates a fleet of >30 airplanes, predominantly 737-800s. It has signed deals to lease 10 Airbus A330s, of which 5 have already been delivered.
Skymark (SKM) only operates domestic routes, but planned to use the A380s to launch long-haul premium flights to the USA and European destinations. Airbus (EDS) canceled the A380 orders in July due to concerns about (SKM)’s ability to pay. The 2 parties had been trying to negotiate changes to the order, but could not find enough common ground for a solution.
Entering long-haul markets, was always going to be challenging for (SKM), given there is heavy competition on major international routes into Japan. In key USA and European markets, (ANA) and (JAL) operate in partnership with overseas alliance partners.
News Item A-2: More low-cost carriers (LCCs) are expected to announce night time schedules from Tokyo’s Haneda International Airport as it seeks to tap into Narita’s (LCC) dominance.
The move (which follows Japanese (LCC) Skymark Airlines (SKM)’s recent launch of night flights from Haneda) has been promoted by Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport & Tourism (MLITT). (MLITT) Minister, Akihiro Ota said regulators want to promote Haneda’s untapped off-peak hours between midnight and 6 am, but had so far restricted applications for the use of overseas carriers.
To further entice international (LCC) operators, the (MLITT) has discounted “graveyard slot” landing fees by -50% for the 1st year, -30% for the 2nd, and -20% for the 3rd year an (LCC) operates out of Haneda.
Skymark (SKM)’s pioneering route (to Okinawa) has now been joined by Peach Aviation (PCA) with a Taipei route, with more expected to follow. Currently, some 13 slots are still available for operators during the night time period, unlike the daytime slot situation at the airport, which is close to maximum capacity and dominated by legacy and flag carrier airlines such as Delta Air Lines (DAL), Japan Airlines (JAL)/(JAS) and All Nippon Airways (ANA).
February 2015: Skymark Airlines (SKM), which recently filed for bankruptcy, has started a new domestic route between Sapporo Chitose (CTS) and Okinawa (OKA). Service on the 2,240 km route began on January 30th and will initially be flown 4x weekly (Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, according to ((SKM)’s on-line booking tool) using its 737-800s. All Nippon Airways (ANA) already operates the route with daily flights. (SKM) already serves Okinawa with over >20 daily flights from 7 other airports across Japan. A significant part of (SKM)’s current difficulties have been attributed to its dispute with Airbus (EDS) after cancelling its order for 6 A380s, which it placed back in 2010. (EDS) is believed to want around $700 million as a cancellation fee. Ouch!
March 2015: Skymark Airlines (SKM) expects to post an operating income by July, where profitability has improved after the bankrupt carrier stopped using large airplanes and pared costs, President Masakazu Arimori said.
(SKM) may consider transferring the 10 leases it holds for the large Airbus Group NV A330 airplane to potential airline partners, Arimori said. (SKM), which grounded 5 A330 planes after filing for bankruptcy protection in January, also has the options of subleasing and code sharing to cut costs, he said. (SKM) has 5 more A330 planes due for delivery this year.
"Earnings are recovering faster than expected," said Arimori, 58. "We may be able to achieve operating profit in May. By July, definitely."
Arimori has cut flights and pared expenses to help lift margins at the airline as it prepares to present a restructuring plan by the end of May. Facing stiff competition and higher leasing costs due to the weaker yen, (SKM) sought bankruptcy protection with 71 billion yen/US$594 million in liabilities after a decision to purchase six Airbus A380 superjumbos flopped last year.
Private-equity firm Integral Corporationis assisting (SKM)'s turnaround, and (SKM) is seeking other partners as well. (ANA) Holdings Inc, Orix Corporation and (H I S) Company have all said they intend to support (SKM) in some manner. AirAsia (ASW) has also applied to support the Japanese carrier, Transport Minister, Akihiro Ohta said last month.
(SKM)'s profitability has been improving since the bankruptcy filing and the A330 grounding, Arimori said. Weekly gross profit rose to 781 million yen in the seven days ended February 21, from 245 million yen in the week through January 28, as the number of passengers increased +19% during that period to 14,864, Arimori said.
(SKM) has halted unprofitable routes since the bankruptcy filing, paring daily flights to 128 from 152. (SKM) wouldn't need code share flights with other airlines, as long as it only operates smaller Boeing 737 planes, Arimori said.
(SKM)e still holds 36 takeoff and landing slots for local service from Tokyo's Haneda airport, an asset worth about 72 billion yen in annual revenue, according to Hiroshi Hasegawa, an analyst at (SMBC) Nikko Securities Inc in Tokyo.
Rights to Haneda are lucrative because it's much closer than Narita airport to the center of Tokyo. With 46 landings and takeoffs every hour, Haneda is the preferred location for business (C) travelers and is the world's 4th-busiest aerodrome, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
Arimori, who was promoted from Chief Financial Officer to President when the airline declared bankruptcy, also said he expects future partners to help with airplane maintenance.
Skymark (SKM)'s bankruptcy filing came 5 years after Japan Airlines Corporation became the 1st major Asian flag-carrier to file for bankruptcy, seeking protection from creditors with 2.32 trillion yen in liabilities. (JAL) successfully re-listed in 2012.
If approved by creditors, (SKM) would start implementation of the recovery plan by the end of July, the company said last month. "We'll do our best to maximize repayment to our creditors," Arimori said.
April 2015: Airbus (EDS) filed a JPY84 billion/$700 million claim with the Tokyo District Court against Skymark Airlines (SKM), the latest move in the payment dispute between (EDS) and (SKM).
(EDS) initiated proceedings against Skymark (SKM) in December last year, following (SKM)’s default on process payments for its order of six Airbus A380s, which were scheduled to start delivery late last year. Although (SKM), which filed for bankruptcy protection at the end of January, has said it is in the process of crafting a “rehabilitation program” by the end of May, it is also subject to some JPY200 billion in claims from other creditors.
(SKM) has said it will cancel or re-assign leases for 10 Airbus A330s, and is cutting schedules and “operating small flights to reduce the operational costs,” (SKM) President Masakazu Arimori said.
(SKM) has scheduled a creditors meeting for late June, but still owes >JPY71 billion to other creditors, according to a bankruptcy filing.
May 2015: "Looking for a Buyer: Skymark (SKM) A380s sit on Airbus tarmac in Toulouse" by Karen Walker in (ATW) Editor's Blog, May 28th, 2015 - - see photo "SKM-2015-05 - Two A380s at Toulouse."
Taking in the Toulouse sunshine, and clearly not going anywhere soon, is this pair of Airbus A380s which were originally bound for Japan and Tokyo-based low-cost carrier (LCC), Skymark Airlines (SKM), which defaulted on its payments for 6 A380s early this year and filed for bankruptcy protection.
In Toulouse for Airbus’ annual Innovation Day briefing for journalists, the event took place in the company’s A380 (VIP) center. (ATW) correspondent, Kurt Hofmann, took this photo of the A380s sitting just outside the building.
Skymark (SKM) was de-listed from the Tokyo Stock Exchange in March; it struggled, and ultimately failed, to make its business model work against Japan’s fiercely-competitive (LCC) market.
All Nippon Airways (ANA) has agreed to buy up to 20% of (SKM), but the current restructuring plan has been rejected by 2 of (SKM)’s largest creditors, Airbus (EDS) and lessor, Intrepid Aviation (INL).
In the foreground of this photo can be seen an A380 built for British Airways (BAB), 1 of 12 that (BAB) ordered and which it is now operating on routes such as London Heathrow to Washington Dulles and Singapore. Happier times for that A380, at least.
August 2015: Skymark Airlines (SKM) creditors have approved a rehabilitation plan that will see All Nippon Airways (ANA) take a minority stake in (SKM), rejecting a rival plan that included Delta Air Lines (DAL).
April 2016: Emirates Airline (EAD) has ordered 2 new Airbus A380s, scheduled for delivery in the 4th quarter of 2017. A source close to the transaction confirmed that the 2 A380s had been originally commissioned by Japan’s Skymark Airlines (SKM), which filed for bankruptcy in 2015.
December 2016: 2 737-86N (41263, JA73NY; 41264, JA73NT), leased.
Click below for photos:
1 737-8AL (CFM56-7B26) (3088-36692, /09 JA737X), (SIL) LEASED 2009-11. 177Y.
4 737-8FZ (CFM56-7B26) (2888-29680, /09 JA737U, 2009-04; 3113-29663, /09 JA737Y, 2009-12; 3450-31743, JA73NC, 2010-10; 3474-33440, JA73ND, 2010-11), (BBB) LEASED. 177Y.
7 737-8HX (CFM56-7B26) (2339-36845, /07 JA737N, 2007-08; 2493-29681, /08 JA737P, 2007-08; 3372-36849, JA73NA, 2010-08; 3394-36848, JA73NB, 2010-09; 38101, JA73NH, 2011-10; 3933-38104, JA73NL, 2012-02), (CGP) LSD. 177Y.
1 737-8Q8 (CFM56-7B26) (2818-35290, /09 JA737T), (ILF) LEASED 2009-03. 177Y.
1 737-81D (CFM56-7B) (39421, JA73NM), 2012-02. 177Y.
2 737-82Y (CFM56-7B26) (3308-40712, /10 JA737Z; 3501-40713, /10 JA73NE), 2010-12), (MCAP) LEASED. 177Y.
2 737-86N (CFM56-7B26) (1830-34247, /05 JA737H, 2005-12; 1857-34249, /06 JA737K, 2006-01), (GEF) 8-YR LEASED. 177Y.
2 737-86N (CFM56-7B26) (1960-32694, JA737L, 2006-06; 2136-32683, JA737M, 2006-06), (GEF) LEASED. 177Y.
3 737-86N (CFM56-7B26) (2630-35228, /08 JA737Q; 2666-35630, /08 JA737R; 38023, JA73NK, 2012-01), (GEF) LEASED. 177Y.
3 737-86N (CFM56-7B26) (38046, JA73NU, 2013-06; 41263, JA73NY, 2013-10 & 2016-12; 41264, JA73NT, 2016-12) (GEF) LEASED. 177Y.
0 767-281 (CF6-80A) (171-23434, /87 JA8255), (ANA) WET-LEASED 2003-04. RETURNED 2004-09. 234Y.
1 767-3Q8ER (CF6-80C2B6F) (714-27616, /98 JA767A "YAHOO! JAPAN;" 722-27617, /98 JA767B "USEN BROADBAND NETWORKS"), (ILF) 8 YEAR LEASED. 27617; RETURNED 2008-08. 12C, 297Y.
0 767-3Q8ER (CF6-80C2B6F) (870-29390, /02 JA767C), (ILF) LEASED 2002-05. RETURNED, LEASED TO (SDM) 2008-04. 12C, 297Y.
0 767-328ER (CF6-80C2B6F) (579-27427, /95 JA767E), (RBA) LEASED 2004-11. RETURNED. 12C, 297Y.
0 767-36NER (CF6-80C2B7F) (902-30847, /03 JA767D), (GEF) LEASED 2003-09. RETURNED 2009-12, LEASED TO TITAN AIRWAYS. 12C, 297Y.
1 767-38EER (CF6-80C2B7F) (829-30840, /01 JA767F), EX-(AAR), (GEF) LEASED 2005-03. RETURNED 2009-06 & LEASED TO (TUB). 12C, 297Y.
4 ORDERS 787 DREAMLINER:
4 +6 ORDERS A330-343 (TRENT 772B-60) (1483, JA330A; 1491, JA330B; 1542, JA330D, 2014-07, 1574, JA330F), INTREPID AVIATION (INL) LEASED 2014-02. 1574; TO AIR EUROPA (ARE) 2015-07. 271 PAX.
0 ORDERS A380-841 (TRENT 900-84), 114C; 280Y, 6 ORDERS CANCELED 2014-07. 2 SOLD TO EMIRATES AIRLINE (EAD) 2016-04.
Click below for photos:
TAKASHI JDE, CHAIRMAN.
SHINICHI NISHIKUBO, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (CEO).
MASAKAZU ARIMORI, PRESIDENT AND CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER (CFO).
M OBUSE, VP FLIGHT OPERATIONS & CABIN SERVICES DIVISION (2002-01).
A MAKU, VP MAINTENANCE DIVISION (2002-01),
K MATSUMOTO, VP FLIGHT OPERATIONS ENGINEERING (2002-01).
A OKAZAKI, VP INFORMATION SYSTEMS (2001-04).
A UMEMURA, DEPUTY VP & GENERAL MANAGER FLIGHT OPERATIONS.
T MURAHARA, GENERAL MANAGER ENGINEERING (2001-10), (firstname.lastname@example.org).
M OMORI, GENERAL MANAGER MAINTENANCE PLANNING (email@example.com).
S INUI, SECRETARY GENERAL, SAFETY PROMOTION (firstname.lastname@example.org).