||Currently Not Operational
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SKP-MISS AUSTRIA OM-SEG
SKP-TOP LCC 2005
FORMED IN 2001 AND STARTED OPERATIONS IN 2002. INCLUSIVE TOUR OPERATOR. DOMESTIC, REGIONAL, & INTERNATIONAL, SCHEDULED & CHARTER, PASSENGER & CARGO, JET AIRPLANE SERVICES.
IVANSKA' CESTA 26
PO BOX 24
SK-820 01 BRATISLAV 21, SLOVAKIA
SLOVAKIA (SLOVAK REPUBLIC) (SLOVENSKA REPUBLICA) WAS ESTABLISHED IN 1993. IT COVERS AN AREA OF 49,014 SQ KM. THE CAPITAL CITY IS BRATISLAVA. THE OFFICIAL LANGUAGE IS SLOVAK. THE POPULATION IS 5.4 MILLION.
FEBRUARY 2002: SKYEUROPE AIRLINES (SKP) IS A JOINT SLOVAK, BELGIAN, SPANISH VENTURE, OWNED BY SKY EUROPE (50.25%) AND SWIFTAIR (SWF) (49.75%).
1ST FLIGHT, BRATISLAVA TO KOSICE (EMB-120).
JUNE 2001: (http://www.skyeurope.com). (email@example.com).
FEBRUARY 2002: 1 EMBRAER EMB-120 BRASILIA FOR SERVICE TO KOSICE (3/DAY), AND TO ZURICH (DAILY).
APRIL 2002: TO PRAGUE.
53 EMPLOYEES (INCLUDING 8 FLIGHT CREW (FC); 5 CABIN ATTENDANTS (CA); & 8 MAINTENANCE TECHNICIANS (MT)).
MAIN BASE: BRATISLAVA M R STEFANIK AIRPORT (BTS).
July 2002: To Milan.
August 2002: Now is the largest scheduled airline in Slovakia. Has 5 more regular routes, to Prague, Split, Venice, and Zurich. In September 2002, to Munich, and Berlin (4/week).
25% of 25,000 passengers carried so far, were booked on-line. Has had 65% LF Load Factor this month, with about half the routes, exceeding >75%.
+2 orders (November 2002) EMB-120's Brazilias.
February 2003: In March 2003, Bratislava - Stuttgart. Kosice - Prague.
In March 2003, to open a base at Kosice in eastern Slovakia.
May 2003: 1 order 737-5YO (25186), GECAS (GEF) leased.
July 2003: 737-5YO (25186), ex-Rio Sul (ROS), (GEF) leased.
August 2003: Bratislava - Paris Orly (ORY).
September 2003: Carried Pope John Paul II from Bratislava to Sliac and Kosice.
October 2003: Forms a Hungarian affiliate operation, to begin service from Budapest in November 2003. Budapest - London (Stansted) (7/week)/Paris (Orly) (6/week). In December 2003, Budapest - Milan (Bergamo) (7/week)/Zurich (6/week).
737-5YO (25185, HA-LOY), GECAS (GEF) leased.
December 2003: Joins European Low Fares Airline Association (ELFAA), including Air Berlin (BER), Basiq Air (TAV), FlyBe (BEE), Flying Finn (FFW), Hapag Lloyd Express (HAP), Ryanair (RYR), Sky Europe (SKP), Sterling (STR), Sverigefly, and VolareWeb (VLR).
OK for Budapest - London Stansted (STN) nonstop. Budapest - Paris (ORY) still required to route via Bratislava.
January 2004: 2003 = 171,400 passengers (PAX); 71% Load Factor (LF).
February 2004: In March 2004, Bratislava/Budapest - Venice (6/week). In April 2004, Bratislava - Split (3/week); - Dubrovnik; Budapest - Rome (4/week); - Split; - Dubrovnik (3/week); in May 2004, Budapest - Amsterdam/Warsaw (6/week).
Plans to add +3 737's and 1 EMB-120 (for total 6) in 1st half of 2004.
737-5YO (CFM56-3) (25191, OM-SEB), GECAS (GEF) leased.
March 2004: Will open a base in Poland in May 2004.
Aigle Azur (AZU) received most (a total of 1,460/year) of the Paris Orly (ORY) slots previously held by defunct Air Littoral, worth 2 flights/day. COHOR also distributed former Air Littoral slots to Air Nostrum (104), Egyptair (EGP) (104), Montenegro Airlines (MNO) (936), Pulkovo Airlines (STG) (624), Sky Europe (SKP) (624), Turkish (THY) (434), and Tunisair (TUN).
Graham Williamson, COO, ex-First Choice (ATZ).
April 2004: 53 employees (including 8 Flight Crew (FC), 5 Cabin Attendants (CA), & 8 Maintenance Technicians (MT).
Opens its 3rd base in Warsaw for services to Amsterdam, London (STN), and Paris (ORY). Will add service from Warsaw to Milan, Rome, and Zurich.
In May 2004, Bratislava, Budapest - Warsaw. Warsaw - Amsterdam, London (STN), & Paris (ORY). In October 2004, Warsaw - Milan (BGY), Rome (FCO), and Zurich.
May 2004: 2 737-53C's (24826, OM-SED; 24827, OM-SEE), ex-(LOT) and 1 737-5YO (24289, HA-LKP), ex-Turkish Airlines (THY).
June 2004: Operates to 18 destinations within Central & Western Europe. Expects to carry 1 million passengers in 2004.
737-5Y0 (HA-LKO) decorated with an image of Zsuzsanna Laky, Miss Europe 2003 (on left side only). 737-5YO (25289, HA-LKP), (GEF) leased.
July 2004: 2003 = 600 million (RPK) traffic (+41%); 54.9% LF load factor; 1.34 million passengers (PAX) (+20.9%).
August 2004: In September 2004, opens a new base at Krakow for Krakow to London, Amsterdam, Milan, Paris, and Rome.
October 2004: 210 employees.
November 2004: 1st 9 months = 713,600 passengers (PAX) (+91%).
Serves 19 destinations with a fleet of 13 airplanes.
December 2004: In March 2005, Warsaw - Copenhagen. In April 2005, Bratislava - Nice, Krakow & Warsaw - Manchester. Bratislava - Copenhagen. Budapest - Barcelona, Copenhagen. In May 2005, Krakow - Nice. In June 2005, Bratislava - Manchester. Budapest, Warsaw - Nice.
January 2005: 2004 = 955,933 passengers (+458%).
February 2005: Has disagreement with Warsaw Airport, causing it to divert new airplanes originally intended to be based there, to Krakow instead. 4 737-500 airplanes are to be added this summer to double its capacity at Krakow, increase frequencies on existing routes and open new routes to Barcelona & Manchester. Apparently, Warsaw could not guarantee overnight parking for airplanes and intends to raise passenger charges by +23% to pay for a new terminal. Additionally, the airport failed to confirm the required slots for SkyEurope (SKP) to operate from the lower-cost Etiuda terminal and is imposing a penalty for flights landing after 2200 local time.
In 2004, (SKP) carried >1 million passengers on 41 routes to 22 destinations in 14 countries with a fleet of 13 airplanes. It has bases in Vienna - Bratislava, Budapest, Krakow, & Warsaw.
In June 2005, Bratislava & Budapest to Athens, Copenhagen, and Nice.
March 2005: Completed a EUR 10 Million/$13 Million equity fund-raising, the proceeds of which will be used for fleet development. The investment was provided by funds managed by East Capital Asset Management AB, an independent asset manager specializing in Eastern European financial markets.
May 2005: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) operates a network of 41 routes to 22 destinations in 13 European countries with a fleet of 15 airplanes.
(SKP), Central Europes first low-cost low-fare airline, announced it will lease 12 new 737-700s from (GEF). The airplanes will be delivered in 2006 and 2007. (SKP)s first new 737-700s will enter the fleet in February 2006. The airplanes will be powered by (CFM56-7B) engines and equipped with fuel-saving winglets supplied by Aviation Partners Boeing (APB). The cabin will be configured with 149 leather seats.
After an intensive competition and detailed analysis, an attractive proposal from Boeing (TBC) and our own experience operating the 737, we concluded the Next-Generation 737 is the best airplane to take us along our demanding growth plan, said Christian Mandl, (SKP) CEO & co-founder.
Boeing (TBC) forecasts that Central European countries will require about 570 new airplanes worth about USA$ 30.6 billion during the next 20 years. Single-aisle airplanes in the 100- to 150-seat market, such as the 737, will account for 72%. 9% will be twin-aisle airplanes, with the remainder being regional jets.
We are thrilled to expand our relationship with (SKP) by leasing next-generation 737s to a low-cost carrier in the fast growing Central European region, said Declan Hartnett, Senior VP & Region Manager, Europe for (GEF).
4 737-33V's (29332, HA-LKR; 29334, HA-LHS; 29335, HA-LKT; 29336, HA-LKU), ex-EasyJet (EZY), deliveries. These will be based at its hub in Budapest. $1.7 Billion, 16/16 orders (February 2006) 737-700's, 12 GECAS (GEH) leased.
June 2005: The Slovak government plans to sell 66% of its holdings in both of its country's international airports at Bratislava and Kosice by year end. The remaining 34% stakes will stay state-owned. Bratislava has seen a sharp increase in passenger traffic (RPK)'s in the past few years primarily ecause of Slovakian low-cost carrier, SkyEurope (SKP).
Added a 4th 737-33V (29336, HA-LKU), to its base in Budapest. 737-33V (29332, HA-LKR), Oak & Hill Aircraft Management leased.
July 2005: Is planning an Initial Public Offering (IPO) listing on the Vienna Stock Exchange. It wants to offer 30% - 40% of its shares by late August or early September.
In October 2005, Bratislava - Basel, and Cologne.
August 2005: In October 2005, Bratislava - Milan Bergamo increased to (10/week).
September 2005: SkyEurope (SKP) said it carried 481,302 passengers in July - August, up +93% over the year-ago period. Load factor for the two months exceeded 90% LF.
(SKP) said it will launch service from its base at Bratislava to Sofia and Bucharest on December 9 and December 12, respectively, with fares starting at 25 one-way excluding taxes. Frequencies were not disclosed.
SkyEurope Holding, parent of the airline, completed its initial public offering (IPO) of 12.98 million shares priced at 6/$7.33 per share.
The offering consisted of 10 million new shares and 2.98 million existing shares, including an over-allotment option of 1.18 million shares. Total proceeds were 78 million of which 60 million went to the company. Market capitalization, based on the offering price, is 120 million.
(SKP) shares began trading on the Vienna and Warsaw stock exchanges under the symbol "SKY" at an initial price of 6/$7.25 per share and climbed to 6.60 on the Vienna exchange, before closing at 6.30. (CA IB) was the Global Coordinator and Sole Bookrunner for the offering. Sal Oppenheim was co-lead manager.
October 2005: SkyEurope (SKP) transported 196,549 passengers in September, up +74% compared to the some month last year, resulting a load factor of 80.1% LF. In the past 12 months, (SKP) transported 1.7 million passengers, up +132% from the 12-month period ended September 30, 2004.
Graham Williamson, COO, resigned to join GoAir (GOZ) as CEO.
(SKP) launched thrice-weekly service between Dublin and Bratislava on October 14.
November 2005: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP), with the introduction of its winter schedule from October 30, will add 31 weekly flights progressively to its schedule. From Bratislava, it is serving Basel/Mulhouse and Cologne/Bonn with four weekly flights each. On December 9, it adds Sofia to the mix with four weekly services and Bucharest follows on December 12, also with four weekly services. Twice-weekly ski season service from London Stansted to Poprad in the Slovak High Tatras commences December 3. Weekly Warsaw - Milan Bergamo service also begins on December 3. (SKP) will serve Innsbruck from Paris Orly and Amsterdam with a total of seven weekly flights beginning December 2 (Paris) and December 1 (Amsterdam). Salzburg will be served from Manchester, Barcelona and Warsaw beginning December 3 with a total of five weekly frequencies.
(SKP) is starting 11 new routes for this winter schedule, that includes the addition of 7 new destinations to its network and 31 additional weekly flights. The new routes are:
Bratislava to Basel/Mulhouse = 4 flights a week from October 30;
Bratislava to Cologne = 4 flights a week from October 30;
Bratislava to Bucharest = 4 flights a week from December 12;
Bratislava to Sofia = 4 flights a week from December 9;
Innsbruck to Amsterdam = 3 flights a week from December 1;
Innsbruck to Paris-Orly = 4 flights a week from December 2;
Poprad to London Stansted = 2 flights a week from December 3;
Salzburg to Barcelona = 2 flights a week from December 3;
Salzburg to Manchester = 2 flights a week from December 3;
Warsaw to Barcelona = 1 flight a week from December 3;
Warsaw to Bergamo = 1 flight a week from December 3;
All new flights are operated with 737-300s and 737-500s.
(SKP) announced a major expansion of its Krakow hub increasing the number of airplanes stationed there to 4 in 2006. The airline will also base its first new 737-700 there and will add service to 8 new destinations and resume seasonal Barcelona service. New routes from Krakow to:
Athens from June 8th = 2x a week;
Barcelona from April 13th = 4x a week;
Birmingham from April 12th = 2x a week;
Bologna from April 13th = 3x a week;
Brussels from March 26th = 4x a week;
Edinburgh from April 13th = 3x a week;
Naples from June 8th = 2x a week;
Stockholm from April 13th = 4x a week;
Turin from March 27th = 3x a week.
(SKP) will add service from Budapest to 4 new destinations next summer as well as resume seasonal summer service to another 4.
New Destinations from Budapest as follows:
Bologna from April 13th = 3x a week;
Burgas from June 17th = 2x a week;
Naples from April 14th = 2x a week;
Varna from June 24th = 2x a week;
Resumption of seasonal service from Budapest as follows:
Athens from June 8th = 2x a week;
Dubrovnik from June 17th = 3x a week;
Nice from June 17th = 3x a week;
Split from June 17th = 2x a week.
(SKP) is expanding service at Amsterdam from the 2006 summer schedule. On March 25th, the airline will inaugurate service to Poznan (Poland) with 3 flights a week operated on Mondays/Wednesdays/Fridays. The airline will also increase frequency to Bratislava from 6 to 7 flights a week and to Krakow from 3 to 4 flights a week, all operated with the 737.
Amsterdam Schiphol's new low-cost carrier pier opened November 1 with easyJet (EZY), Thomsonfly.com (TFY), bmibaby (BMI), Jet2 (JT2) and (SKP) as tenants. Wizz Air (WZZ) joins December 1. Initially, 20 - 30 daily flights will operate from Pier H, which has seven gates but no airbridges. The airport's seventh pier, it can accommodate a maximum of 64 daily inbound and outbound flights and was designed to handle around 8 million passengers annually. It was constructed in just nine months, Schiphol said.
December 2005: SkyEurope (SKP) Holding AG, parent of the (SKP), in its first financial report since completing an initial public share offering (IPO) last September, reported an annual loss for its fiscal year ended September 30 of -28.6 million/-$33.5 million, or -26.8 million adjusted to reflect the phase-out of its Brasilias. This compares to a loss of -10.1 million in the 2003 - 2004 fiscal year. The company noted that most of the loss occurred during the first three quarters and said it achieved net income of +0.7 million in the fiscal fourth quarter excluding special charges, with operating earnings of +1.8 million on revenue of 48.6 million. However, it also warned that owing to "seasonal effects," results of the first half of fiscal year (FY) 2006 "are expected to remain behind those of the fourth quarter" of (FY) 2005. Annual operating revenues rose +114% to 112.7 million on a +132% jump in passengers to 1.7 million. (RPK)s (passenger traffic) grew +36% to 2 billion while (ASK)s (capacity) climbed +140% to 2.6 billion, resulting in a load factor of 77.7% LF, down -1.2 points. Eighteen new routes were launched last year. In 2006, (SKP) said it will continue to implement its strategy of growth by adding approximately +50% to its seat capacity, with 80% of the increase allocated to strengthening its position on existing routes and 20% set for new markets. The carrier stated that "critical mass" required for profitability may be achieved in 2006 while 2007 is expected to be the first year of consistent profitability, assuming current market conditions continue.
(SKP) announced that it will add 27 weekly flights to nine new destinations from its base at Krakow with the start of the summer season in March. New cities are Brussels, Stockholm, Edinburgh, Birmingham, Bologna, Naples, Turin, Athens and Barcelona. It currently serves seven destinations from Krakow: London Stansted, Paris Orly, Rome, Milan Bergamo, Amsterdam, Manchester and Dublin.
(SKP) will inaugurate nonstop service from Krakow to Birmingham on April 12th. The airline will operate 2 flights a week, on Wednesdays/Saturdays, with a 737-500. (SKP) started a new five-times-weekly service from Bratislava to Bucharest on December 12.
Snecma Services Brussels signed a time and material engine Maintenance Repair & Overhaul (MRO) contract with (SKP) covering exclusive (MRO) services through 2008 for the (CFM56-3)s powering its fleet of 12 737s.
February 2006: SkyEurope (SKP) nearly doubled its revenue and reduced unit costs by more than -10% in its first fiscal quarter ended Dec 31 but saw little improvement on its bottom line, which showed a -12 million/-$14.4 million loss that was just +0.5% better than the -12.1 million deficit in the year-ago quarter. Operating revenues climbed +42.5% to 26.2 million against a +23.8% rise in expenses. Totals were not provided, but the carrier said it spent 12.3 million on airplanes and traffic servicing and 11.9 million on fuel, the latter an increase of +29%. It has no hedging program.
(SKP) has launched a host of new routes and has been replacing its Brasilias with 737s, leading to a year-on-year capacity growth of +38.1%. Passenger numbers jumped +42.6% to 409,946 as load factor rose +0.2 point to 65.9% LF and cost per (ASK) dropped -10.5% to 5.9 eurocents.
"With the first new 737-700NG airplanes joining our fleet in March 2006, we will enhance our product offering, increase seat capacity and reduce unit costs further. This will allow us to reinforce our leadership position in Central and Eastern Europe," CEO Christian Mandl said.
(SKP) is shifting capacity from Poland, where low-cost competitor Wizz Air (WZZ) holds sway, to the Czech Republic, where the Slovakian carrier will open its fifth base at Prague Ruzyni. "In spite of being influenced by the low-cost revolution mostly from the UK, the market in Prague remains under-served and misses a dedicated low-cost, low-fare airline based there," (SKP) said. It will take delivery of 16 149-seat 737-700s over the next two years and will base a pair in Prague. It will begin service April 10 with five routes: Daily to Amsterdam, four-times-weekly to Barcelona, daily to Milan Bergamo, twice-daily to Paris Orly and daily to Rome Fiumicino. Thrice-weekly flights to Nice will commence April 11 and twice-weekly service to Naples will begin April 13.
Meanwhile, (WZZ) announced its plans to fill the breach in Poland, by offering free tickets on certain flights from Warsaw and Katowice from March 26 to May 31. (WZZ) said SkyEurope (SKP) is canceling service from Warsaw to London Stansted and Bratislava and opting not to launch previously announced services from Krakow to Stockholm and Bologna and from Poznan to Amsterdam. According to (SKP)'s website, flights from Warsaw are not available after March 24 and tickets are not for sale on the other three routes.
Later, (SKP) denied forcefully any assertion that it is decreasing its service to the Polish market, announcing it will base four of the six new 737-700s it will add this year at Krakow Balice. Rival (WZZ) said it would offer free tickets to (SKP) passengers left "stranded" by the Slovakian carrier's decision to cancel service from Warsaw to London Stansted and Bratislava and to postpone two additional flights from Poland. (SKP) said it will operate 61 weekly flights from Poland to 16 European destinations this summer and that the decisions mentioned by (WZZ) "are not related in any way to a reduction of (SKP)'s engagement in Poland." It said it is adding service from Krakow to Edinburgh, Birmingham, Brussels, Turin, Naples, Barcelona and Athens in the spring and early summer and shortly will announce additional routes. It noted (WZZ) has canceled or reduced capacity on at least 11 flights from Warsaw and Katowice.
March 2006: SR Technics (SWS) will assume full component management and maintenance responsibility for the 32 737-700s SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) will be introducing from this month onward. The 11-year agreement is expected to generate business worth approximately 45 million/$54.2 million and "marks a major step for SR Technics (SWS) into the Central and Eastern European market," the jet airplane Maintenance Repair & Overhaul (MRO) company said. Services will be performed as part of its Integrated Component Solutions offering and include a consignment stock located at Bratislava Airport, 24-hours access to (SWS)'s component pool at its London Heathrow Logistics Center and component maintenance and repair.
(SKP) launched thrice-weekly services from Krakow Balice to Turin and Brussels. (SKP) will station four new 737-700s at Balice to support its planned expansion to 51 weekly flights to 14 European destinations this summer. (SKP) will add the first of two 737-700s on March 10 to its new base in Prague, from which it will launch service to Amsterdam, Barcelona, Milan Bergamo, Naples, Nice, Paris Orly, and Rome Fiumicino from April. The carrier also finalized its first jet fuel hedging transaction, covering 90% of its demand between March and May. Hedge was made at a price equivalent to IPE Brent $60.50 per barrel.
737-76N (32684, OM-NGA), (GEF) leased.
April 2006: SkyEurope (SKP) opened its Prague base, from which it will operate flights to seven European destinations. (SKP) will operate seasonal summer service from Krakow to Split from June 17th through September 16th. The airline will operate 2 flights a week, on Tuesdays & Saturdays, using a 737-700. (SKP) will operate seasonal summer service from Bratislava to Naples from June 18th through September 17th. The airline will operate 2 flights a week, on Wednesdays & Sundays, using a 737-500.
2 737-76N's (32695, OM-NGB; 32696, OM-NGC), (GEF) leased.
May 2006: SkyEurope (SKP) Holding, parent of the Bratislava-based low-fare airline, reported that its net loss for the fiscal second quarter ended March 31 more than tripled to -21.7 million/$27.7 million from -6.8 million in the year-ago period, bringing the fiscal first-half deficit to -33.8 million compared to a loss -18.9 million in the year-ago period. "As expected, the weaker winter months left their mark on the first half of the financial year 2006," the carrier said in a statement. To fund its aggressive growth plans, SkyEurope (SKP) intends to ask shareholders for permission to "issue new shares to finance the fleet and continued network expansion" at an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) next month.
Second-quarter revenues rose +37.6% to 24.7 million but expenses jumped +75.2% to 45.2 million driven by a +90% surge in fuel costs. As a result, operating loss more than doubled to -20.4 million from -7.8 million. The company noted that it adopted a new revenue model under which service fees, such as fuel surcharges, are incorporated in the base price of the ticket. This had the effect of impacting revenues negatively during the reporting period, as revenues previously accounted for, at the time of the booking, are now realized when transport is provided.
Fiscal first-half revenues climbed +40% to 51.2 million while expenses rose +46.5% to 85.6 million. Operating loss widened to -34.4 million from 21.9 million. Excluding fuel and nonrecurring items, first-half cost per (ASK) fell -5% to 4.59 euro cents. Passenger volume grew +53% to 0.9 million and load factor was up +2 points to 68% LF.
At the (EGM) scheduled for June 20, SkyEurope (SKP) will ask shareholders to approve an ordinary capital increase of up to 20 million shares and proportional increase of authorized share capital of up to 10 million shares from the current 5 million shares.
Employees: 754 (including 120 Flight Crew (FC); 188 Cabin Attendants (CA); & 112 Maintenance Technicians (MT).
737-76N (32674, OM-NGD), (GEF) leased.
June 2006: European low-cost carriers (LCC)s operated 16.3% of all flights in May, according to a market analysis issued by Eurocontrol. In the past 12 months, (LCC)s added +2.4 points to their market share through re-branding and organic growth. The number of flights operated by (LCC)s in the first five months of 2006 increased +23% year-over-year to more than 3,700 per day and there are now 15 low-cost operators with more than >50 daily flights compared to 13 a year ago. Overall, Europe now has 50 (LCC)s, down by -2 since last year, with low-cost companies operating out of 22 countries.
The UK still is the largest low-cost market, with 32% of its flights operated by (LCC)s. This compares with a 21% share in Poland and Spain. Finland, Poland, Denmark and Latvia have seen the low-cost market share jump by more than +5% but others, including Hungary, Slovenia and Greece, have lost market share. A +2% increase per year is the average, which is the same rate of market share growth seen in previous years.
The Eurocontrol analysis also shows that there is no apparent shifting of low-cost flights from larger airports to smaller ones. London Stansted remains the airport with the largest number of budget flights, followed by Gatwick, Dublin, Luton and Cologne/Bonn. Ten of the top 25 low-cost country-pair flows involve the UK and account for 42% of all low-cost flights.
Slovakia is the national market, where individual flows are most dominated by (LCC)s. However, the biggest markets remain dominated by traditional carriers: Out of the top 10 total country-pair flows in Europe, low-cost carriers have the highest share in only one, between Spain and the UK.
SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) said the Bank of Scotland will provide pre-delivery payments and long-term loan financing on the four new 737-700s scheduled for delivery in the second half of 2007. The airline last year placed an order for 16 firm airplanes and 16 options and already has taken delivery of four. Twelve 737-700s, including those four, are to be financed under operating leases from GECAS (GEF). The airplanes financed with the Bank of Scotland will be SkyEurope (SKP)'s first owned airplanes. The carrier said the transaction should be closed by the end of this month and "is a first step toward achieving a financing mix between leased and owned airplanes, a strategy also followed by the leading airlines in SkyEurope (SKP)'s peer group."
SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) will increase frequencies from Bratislava to Bucharest and Sofia to six-times-weekly from four from September 11.
SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) added a new booking service in which passengers buying tickets online, can have confirmation sent directly to their cellular phones via (SMS) messaging.
SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) announced the conversion of five 737-700 purchase rights into firm orders, bringing its commitment to the 737 to 21. The five airplanes, which the airline said have an estimated value of $295 million, will be equipped with winglets and are scheduled for delivery in 2008. SkyEurope (SKP) currently operates five 737-700s and still holds 11 purchase rights for airplanes to be delivered through 2010. All of SkyEurope (SKP)'s new airplanes are equipped with performance-enhancing Blended Winglets.
737-76N (32676, OM-NGE), (GEF) leased.
July 2006: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) will begin thrice-weekly Salzburg - Paris Orly service on September 15. Innsbruck - Orly service will be discontinued.
(SKP) took delivery of its fifth 737-700 last month. It will be based in Krakow.
August 2006: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) Holding AG announced an agreement with York Global Finance II for injection of +38.8 million/+$49.6 million of fresh capital into the airline as part of a 56.3 million financing package, that also will include a 17.5 million public rights offering. "York believes (SKP) is strategically positioned in highly attractive emerging European markets, which offer significant growth opportunities not available in most parts of the world," York Capital Management UK Advisors Ltd, CEO, Christophe Aurand said. "Additionally, (SKP)'s low cost and entrepreneurial business model enables a product and service offering superior to its competitors." The carrier posted a -33.8 million loss in the first fiscal half ended March 31. York will purchase approximately 9 million new shares at 1.75 each, while another 10 million new shares will be offered via a rights issue at the same price. York initially will own about 23% of the carrier's pro forma shares and also will purchase 6.7 million in bonds convertible into an additional 3.8 million new shares (raising its stake to +29.9%) and 17 million of nonmandatory convertible bonds. Shareholder approval of the deal is expected at a September 20 meeting. Regulatory approvals also are required. UBS Investment Bank and CA-IB will act as lead managers of the rights issue. (SKP) said it has appointed UBS Investment Bank and CA-IB Corporate Finance to "examine a range of financing options," that may include the flotation of new shares in order to "finance the fleet and continued network expansion." The carrier raised 60 million/$76.4 million from an initial publoc offering (IPO) of 12.98 million shares last fall. It reported a loss of -33.8 million in the fiscal first half ended March 31.
(SKP) will begin 2 flights a week, on Tuesdays & Saturdays, using a 737 for Turin - Prague service from December 26 and a four-times-weekly on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, & Saturdays, Rome Fiumicino - Bucharest Baneasa nonstop service on January 12.
It named Karim Makhlouf, Chief Commercial Officer, Lane Zirnhelt, Finance Manager, and Benjamin Djiane, Communications Manager.
(SKP) said that passengers now can pre-select seats when booking flights on its website.
September 2006: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) suffered a -16.5 million/-$21.2 million loss in its fiscal third quarter ended June 30, widened from a -10.1 million deficit in the year-ago quarter, despite making what it called "significant operational improvements."
(SKP) Holding AG announced the launch of its 17.5 million rights issue via the sale of 10 million shares arranged by UBS Investment Bank and CA IB. The flotation was announced late last month. The subscription period will close September 22.
The Bratislava-based low-fare carrier said it remains committed to growth, having announced a +56.3 million capital increase and financing package.
"(SKP)'s management will specifically focus on maximizing revenues through a load factor active strategy in terms of yield management and route planning and enhanced ancillary revenue offering," it said. "The company will also implement a number of cost-saving initiatives in areas such as maintenance, planning and ground handling, with the aim to continue to optimize its cost base."
Revenues soared +62% to 44.6 million as the airline enjoyed a +46% growth in passenger numbers, added five 737-700s and opened 22 new routes, while reallocating capacity from unprofitable services to its Prague base. Expenses increased +47.1% to 59.4 million, driven by a +52% rise in fuel costs to 16.6 million. Operating loss widened to -14.8 million from -12.9 million.
Passenger traffic grew +37.1% to 757 million (RPK)s against a +49.5% surge in capacity to 1.02 billion (ASK)s, dropping load factor -6.7 points to 74.6% LF. SkyEurope (SKP) said the decline was more than offset by a +17.1% rise in yield to 5.78 euro cents. Unit revenue increased +7.4% to 4.31 euro cents, while (CASK) dipped -1.6% to 5.85 euro cents, or 2.9% to 4.21 euro cents excluding fuel. It credited efficiencies generated by the new 737s for part of the improvement.
For the nine-month period, the airline reported a net loss of -50.2 million, up from a -29 million loss for the year-ago period. Operating loss widened to -49.2 million from -34.7 million.
(SKP) launched thrice-weekly, Paris Orly - Salzburg service.
Snecma Services will maintain (CFM56-7) engines powering (SKP)'s fleet of 737NGs for a minimum of eight years under a contract that also includes provision of engineering services to (SKP).
(SKP) unveiled its 3rd "beauty" branded airplane. After a 737-500 was painted with Tatjana Batinic and a 737-700 with Adriana Karambeu, this 737-300 (HA-LKU) is decorated with Benedek Roza Muriel. The airplane is based at Budapest Airport where it operates to 15 European destinations.
October 2006: Although Ryanair (RYR) and other low-cost carriers (LCC)s generate large amounts of revenue from "nonticket sources," legacy airlines derive significantly more by selling frequent-flier miles to partners, typically via co-branded credit cards, says a recent study by IdeaWorks Co (ideaworkscompany.com).
According to the report, Europe's top four (LCC)s raised 470 million/$589.1 million in ancillary revenues last year, by charging for things such as seat assignments, checked baggage, credit card usage, onboard snacks and beverages, aswell as other items. IdeaWorks estimated that (RYR)'s "aggressive use of a la carte pricing" generated ancillary revenues of 7.76 per passenger in 2005, placing it well ahead of Aer Lingus (ARL) (5.99), (SKP) (4.38), easyJet (EZY) (4.37), and Air Berlin (BER) (2.51).
Yet these performances were eclipsed by United Airlines (UAL), which generated 9.40 per passenger from its Mileage Plus frequent-flier program, and Alaska Airlines (ASA), which generated 8.55 from its Mileage Plan credit card. In fact, the consultancy estimated that 70% "of the miles earned by Mileage Plan members are now generated by charge activity tied to" (ASA)'s co-branded card. In total, USA frequent-flier programs generated "an estimated 2.5 billion."
IdeaWorks said the figures suggest that "even greater ancillary revenues may reside in an activity traditionally scorned by (LCC)s . . . frequent-flier programs." The full report is available at IdeaWorksCompany.com.
737-76N (32680, OM-NGF), (GECAS) (GEF) leased.
November 2006: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) is nearing a decision to open a base in Vienna (VIE), which is just 60 km from its Bratislava hub. It currently serves Innsbruck (INN) and Salzburg in Austria. A source close to the project said that the carrier plans to base up to three 737s at (VIE) and launch services to both Western and Eastern Europe. (SKP) also plans to operate a twice-daily (VIE) - (INN) service, which will be the first domestic Low Cost Carrier (LCC) route in Austria.
December 2006: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) ended its first full fiscal year as a listed company deeper in the red as it doubled its net loss in the 12 months ended September 30 to -57.3 million/-$76.4 million from the -28.6 million shed in the previous year.
Revenues rose +41% to 158.6 million against expenses of 213.8 million, widening operating loss to -55.2 million from -33.6 million last year. Net loss in the fourth fiscal quarter totaled -7.1 million.
(SKP) added five 737-700s and 35 routes (nearly doubling its network) and opened a base in Prague. While traffic climbed +40.7% to 2.8 billion (RPK)s, capacity rose +44.5% to 3.7 billion (ASK)s, and yield was flat at 5.66 euro cents, driving down unit revenues -2.6% to 4.28 euro cents. The carrier said it expects (RASK) to climb in the current fiscal year "with maturing routes, increased load factors, development of ancillary revenue opportunities and improved network planning and revenue management." It said new routes and larger airplanes contributed to a -2.1-point year-over-year fall in load factor to 75.6% LF. Unit costs, excluding fuel, dropped -1% to 4.12 euro cents and it is targeting a further -5% reduction this year.
CEO, Christian Mandl said now that (SKP) has "succeeded in continuing our growth, it is important to consolidate our position as the leading profitable low-cost carrier in Central and Eastern Europe." To that end, it secured 56.3 million in new financing in August.
Starting March 25, Budapest - Brussels, 4/week; Prague - Athens, 2/week; - Copenhagen, 5/week; starting March 26, Prague - Brussels, 3/week; starting March 27, Krakow - Treviso, 3/week; starting June 2, Bratislava - Malaga, 1/week; & Budapest - Malaga, 1/week; starting June 9, Prague - Catania, 2/week; starting June 14, Budapest - Catania, 2/week; starting June 15, Bratislava - Catania, 2/week; -Thessaloniki, 2/week; Budapest - Thessaloniki, 2/week; Krakow - Palermo, 1/week; - Thessaloniki, 2/week; starting June 23, Prague - Bourgas, 2/week; & starting June 24, Bratislava - Varna, 2/week.
(SKP) confirmed its intention to open a base at Vienna International Airport (VIE) just 60 km from its Bratislava hub, basing two 737-700s at (VIE) starting March 25, and flying to 16 European destinations.
"The opening of a base in Vienna reflects the success of the airline on the Austrian market and underlines the important role of Bratislava as the company's headquarters and home base," (SKP) said, revealing that Austrians account for 20% of passenger throughput in the Slovakian capital. "The combination of Bratislava and Vienna means a further efficiency improvement on our quest for profitability. (SKP) offers now the best destination choice for our passengers in Vienna and Bratislava respectively, hence providing an excellent global product," CEO, Christian Mandl said. Recently, (SKP) reported a -57.3 million/-$75 million loss in the fiscal year ended September 30, which was double the previous 12 months' -28.6 million deficit.
Services from (VIE) will comprise daily flights to Amsterdam, Paris Orly, Brussels and Sofia; six-times-weekly flights to Bucharest; thrice-weekly operations to Barcelona, Venice, Florence, Nice and Athens, and twice-weekly service to Thessaloniki, Larnaca, Dubrovnik, Split and Zadar. By next summer, (SKP) will offer 61 weekly flights from (VIE). It also will provide a bus transfer service between the Austrian and Slovakian capitals.
January 2007: 737-76N (34753, OM-NGG), delivery.
February 2007: SkyEurope (SKP) CCO, Karim Makhlouf said that the carrier intends to focus more on its to core markets and build its operation in Vienna (VIE) to strengthen a business that lost -57.3 million/-$74.2 million in its last fiscal year. The process will start next month with the opening of its Vienna base. "By next winter schedule, we will double our fleet in Vienna to four 737NGs," Makhlouf said. (SKP) wants to place up to 10 airplanes at (VIE) - - it operates just five 737s out of Bratislava. "One of our major problems is seasonality of the network. Summer works fine, but it is also important to survive the winter season. In Vienna, there is a lot of business potential for us," he said. The airline announced that Bank of Scotland Corporate extended a pre-delivery payment loan facility covering five new 737-700s to be delivered next year. (SKP) will launch three new services to Brussels (BRU), anticipating an increased demand for low-fare flights when Virgin Express (EBA) ceases operations March 25th, due to its merger with SN Brussels Airlines (DAT). New flights include a daily from Vienna, a thrice-weekly from Prague, and a four-times-weekly from Budapest aboard 737-700s. It also will add a fourth weekly frequency to its Krakow - (BRU) service.
2 737-76Ns (34754, OM-NGH; 34755, OM-NGJ), (GECAS) (GEF) leased.
March 2007: SkyEurope Airlines(SKP) reduced its operating loss in its first fiscal quarter ended December 31st, but nonoperating charges and taxes wound up pushing (SKP) deeper into the red. The carrier posted a -13.8 million/-$18.2 million loss in the three-month period, widened from a -12 million deficit in the year-ago quarter. It credited "significantly" improved airplane utilization for its operational improvement. Revenue climbed +27.1% to 33.6 million against a +13.3% rise in expenses to 45.8 million, narrowing operating loss to -12.2 million from 14 million in the three months ended December 31, 2005. The average number of airplanes dropped slightly year-over-year, but the introduction of six larger 737NGs increased daily utilization by +20.4% and capacity by +18.5%. Traffic rose +37.5% to 620 million (RPK)s and load factor was up +10.5 points to 76.4% LF. Yields fell -6.7% to 0.056, owing to an increase in promotional fares, but unit revenues grew +8.4% to 0.041, thanks to rising loads and a +75% surge in ancillary revenues. Cost per (ASK) dropped -4.4% to 0.056, and fell -1.2% to 0.041, excluding fuel. The airline has hedged 90% of its planned fiscal year fuel consumption, at $62.50 per barrel.
Looking ahead, SkyEurope (SKP) said it is "on track" to deliver positive full-year (EBITDAR), which would represent a reversal from last year's deficit of -21.2 million.
2 737-76Ns (34756, OM-NGK; 34757, OM-NGL), (GEF) leased.
May 2007: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) is planning to expand aggressively from its new Vienna (VIE) base, possibly to 15 airplanes, in order to challenge Austrian Airlines (AUL)'s "Focus East" strategy, CCO, Karim Makhlouf said. Speaking at the "French Connect" seminar in Nantes La Baule, Makhlouf said, "In times of consolidation, it is normal to go where you expect a gap in the near future," adding that he considers (AUL) to be "the weakest hub carrier in Europe. They have a cost problem. That is why we will attack them." (SKP) opened its Vienna (VIE) base in March with two 737NGs. The fleet should grow to six during the winter timetable and to "up to 15" in the long term, Makhlouf revealed. "Our growth strategy is based on new airplane acquisitions, the new base at (VIE) and our "Go East" strategy. We want to be the leading [low-fare] airline into Eastern Europe and use Vienna as bridge between West and East."
While concentrating on (VIE), (SKP) does not intend to vacate or close down its Bratislava base, which is only 60 km from Vienna. "(SKP) is shifting its network toward main airports as part of my focus to restructure the airline towards profitability," said Makhlouf, who joined the carrier last September from Germanwings (RFG). "Of course there is a huge cost benefit with being based in Bratislava (BTS)." He also confirmed that (SKP) has applied for the traffic rights from its (BTS) base to Russia and Ukraine, that became available following the February demise of Slovak Airlines (SLV), in which the Austrian Airlines Group (AAG) had a 62% shareholding. It anticipates launching service for the winter schedule.
Starting June 8th, Bratislava - Athens, and stops October 8th, Budapest - Athens, using 737s and stops October 8th. Starting June 9th, Prague - Bourgas, - Catania, using 737s. Starting June 14th, Budapest - Catania, using 737-300s. Starting June 15th, Bratislava - Catania, Krakow - Thessaloniki, using 737s. Starting June 16th, Bratislav - Bourgas, and stops September 15th, Budapest - Thessaloniki, Krakow - Palermo, using 737s. Starting June 17th, Bratislava - Thessaloniki, Prague - Thessaloniki, using 737s. Starting June 23rd, Budapest - Bourgas, using 737s, and stops September 15th, Karakow - Bourgas, using 737-300s, and stops September 11th, Prague - Bourgas, using 737s and stops September 15th. Starting June 24th, Bratislava - Varna, using 737s.
(SKP) announced several management changes. Nick Manoudakis was appointed CFO & COO. Jason Bitter will take up the newly created deputy CEO position. Co-founder and Chairman Alain Skowronek will relinquish executive functions and remain available as an adviser. Co-founder Christian Mandl will assume the role of Chairman in addition to his CEO function.
737-76N (34758, HA-LKM), (GEF) leased.
June 2007: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) reported a consolidated net loss of -32.5 million in the fiscal semester ended March 31, a slight amelioration from the -33.6 million lost in the year-ago period.
Turnover increased +35.1% year-on-year to 80.6 million, owing mainly to a +43.8% jump in passengers carried to 1.2 million, partly stimulated by promotional fares for the seasonally weak first half. Operating expenses rose +13.8% due to a "rigorous cost-savings program" to 97.85 million from 86.01 million, while (SKP)'s operating loss narrowed to -30 million from -34.4 million in the 2006 period.
(SKP) flew 1.29 billion (RPK)s, up +38.3% year-over-year, on a +18.7% capacity increase to 1.62 billion (ASK)s. Load factor gained +11.3 points to 79.7% LF, and airplane utilization improved +15.2%. Yield eroded -2.3% to 0.062, but (RASK) lifted +13.8% to 0.05. Cost per (ASK) fell -1% to 0.068. It was flying 10 737-700s and four 737 Classics at the close of the semester.
The carrier maintained its full-year guidance, with (EBITDAR) expected to be positive with a positive (EBIT) in the fourth quarter, thanks to "overall improvements in revenue and a rigorous cost-savings program."
Meantime, it announced changes in the management structure of the airline operating entity. Deputy CEO, Jason Bitter will become CEO of (SKP), taking over from founder & CEO, Christian Mandl, who will continue to serve as Chairman & CEO of SkyEurope Holding. Mandl will focus on strategic projects for the carrier, in particular its planned entry into the Russian market and establishment of an airplane leasing subsidiary, the company said.
(SKP) confirmed that it will turn Vienna (VIE) into its principal base beginning October 28. (SKP) launched service from the airport in March, and said it was prepared to challenge (AUL). (SKP) will increase its (VIE) fleet from two 737-700s to four, and add flights to 12 destinations, while boosting frequencies on existing routes like Amsterdam and Sofia. It eventually plans to fly to 24 airports from (VIE) and carry 2.1 million passengers a year, becoming the airport's second-largest carrier in terms of passengers behind (AUL). It also will launch the first intra-Austrian service to be operated by a (LCC), a twice-daily (VIE) - Innsbruck flight that will compete head-on with (AUL)'s most profitable domestic route.
(SKP)'s home base will remain in nearby Bratislava, albeit with a smaller fleet.
July 2007: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) will launch flights from Vienna to Treviso (thrice-weekly), and Lisbon (four-times-weekly) on October 23 using 737-700s. The Slovakian carrier then will offer flights to 15 destinations from its Austrian base.
August 2007: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) will expand its Vienna schedule by the end of October with new four-times-weekly flights to Copenhagen as well as new service to Timisoara and a second daily flight to Brussels (BRU), all aboard 737-700s. (SKP) will add a second daily Vienna - Brussels flight, and increase thrice-weekly Prague - (BRU) service to daily on October 30.
737-7GL (34760, OM-NGP), delivery.
September 2007: SkyEurope (SKP) Holding reported a consolidated net loss of -5.1 million/-$7 million in the fiscal third quarter ended June 30, much improved compared to the -16.5 million deficit in the year-ago period. Revenue increased +26% to 66.6 million, owing mainly to a +32% rise in passengers to 927,018, partly stimulated by promotional fares. Operating expenses grew +6.4% to 63.41 million, while (SKP)'s operating loss shrank to -5.24 million from -14.48 million last year.
(SKP), the primary operating company in the group, flew 878 million (RPK)s passenger traffic in the quarter, up +29.4% year-over-year, on a +19.4% capacity increase to 1.21 billion (ASK)s. Load factor gained +8.3 points to 80.7% LF and airplane utilization improved +16.7% to 11.25 block hours per day. Yield eroded -2.6% to 0.068, but (RASK) lifted +5.5% to 0.05.
For the nine months ended June 30, consolidated net loss shrank to -37.6 million from -50.2 million in the 2006 period, on a +30.8% gain in revenue to 147.3 million. Operating loss narrowed to -48.8 million from -35.2 million.
Meantime, (SKP) confirmed the appointment of Jason Bitter as CEO of (SKP). It also announced it will close two bases, Budapest and Krakow, in the coming winter schedule "in a move designed to reduce complexity and costs."
(SKP) confirmed it will close its Budapest and Krakow bases, ceasing operations in both cities from October 28. A combined 10 daily flights will be suspended and crews relocated to other sites within the company. The carrier will switch free capacity to Prague and Vienna. "We have decided after much research, that the way to achieve long-term success is to build our operation around Slovakia, Czech Republic and Vienna. These markets have a good mix of both leisure and business traffic, and are growing rapidly with very healthy national economies, and they have less pronounced seasonality than Krakow and Budapest," explained CEO, Jason Bitter.
October 2007: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) transported 349.736 passengers in September, up +18.9% from the year-ago month, as load factor rose +5.4 points to 86.1% LF.
Seattle, Washingtom, USA based "Naverus" was engaged by (SKP) to perform a Required Navigation Performance (RNP) Readiness Assessment in preparation for (RNP) operations. (SKP) is likely to be the first carrier in Europe to operate satellite navigation-guided precision approaches. (RNP) approaches, use Ground Proximity Systems (GPS) satellite nagigation, plus the capabilities of advanced avionics and flight management systems, to enable the airplane to fly tailor-made precision approach paths in three dimensions, with no need for ground-based aids. The basic on-board equipment requirement for (RNP) is twin flight management computers, backed up by inertial navigation systems. Airlines in North America use them extensively, and Australia and New Zealand are increasingly approving (RNP) approaches to provide precision access to airports that are surrounded by difficult terrain or that are subject to sensitive noise abatement procedures. Most customers want (RNP) accuracy to within 0.1nm, and this equates closely to Category 1 precision approach. Peter Pelec, (SKP) Flight Operations Manager, says the airline "has a clear mission to be the (RNP) leader in Europe." He added "(RNP) will ensure more reliable operations under any weather conditions, reduce flight times and fuel consumption, while at the same time enhancing safety." The USA (RNP) design procedures have been accepted by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) as a global standard.
(SKP) will sell two 737-700s scheduled for delivery this month and next, for a profit of +$10 million, that it will use to boost its sagging financial base during the winter season. The company reportedly also will sell its airplane handling unit at Budapest, where it will close its base this month, for an additional +3.5 million/+$4.9 million. With the two deals, (SKP) should have 17 million in cash reserves for the upcoming winter season.
737-7GLs (34761; 34762), delivered and sold to Arik Air (AKI) as (5N-MJE; 5N-MJF).
December 2007: A profitable fourth quarter helped SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) narrow its full-fiscal-year loss to -24.1 million/-$35.6 million from the -57.3 million suffered in the 12 months ended September 30, 2006. Full-year revenue rose +27.4% to 236.2 million against just a +4.2% lift in expenses to 226.6 million. Fuel costs actually declined -5.2%, even in the face of a capacity increase thanks to a fuel hedge that expired in August and a weak USA dollar, the carrier said. Operating loss improved to -20.9 million from -55.5 million in the 2005 to 2006 fiscal year. (SKP) concluded the year operating 14 737-700s, two of which are owned and 12 leased from (GECAS) (GEF). It finished the previous fiscal year with the same number of airplanes. It now flies 43 routes to 30 destinations in 17 countries and has 10 additional airplanes on order for delivery through 2010. It said it plans to exercise purchase rights for six more airplanes in the current fiscal year and operate 30 by 2011.
Passenger numbers rose +29.4% to 3.3 million, as traffic climbed +25.1% year-over-year to 3.5 billion (RPK)s, and capacity grew +14.2% to 4.23 billion (ASK)s. Load factor was up +7.2 points to 82.8% LF. Yield improved +1.9% to 6.74 euro cents, as unit revenue increased +11.5% to 5.58 euro cents. Cost per (ASK) fell -6.6% to 6.08 cents, or -3% to 4.71 cents, excluding fuel.
(SKP)'s fortunes turned around in the fourth quarter, its only profitable period during the fiscal year. Net earnings of +13.5 million represented a reversal from a -7.1 million loss in the year-ago quarter, and it showed a profit on the operating level of +14.3 million, compared to a -6.6 million loss a year earlier.
The airline also announced that Stephen Greenway has joined it as CCO. He previously headed Virgin Blue (VOZ)'s e-Commerce department and has held positions at Virgin Atlantic Airways (VAA), Qantas (QAN), and Official Airline Guide (OAG) Worldwide. The resignation of CEO, Christian Mandl took effect last week. He is succeeded by Jason Bitter, whose appointment was announced in June.
January 2008: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) secured a 15 million/$22 million loan from York Global Finance, its largest shareholder. It said it will use the funds "to continue with the execution of its turnaround plan without diluting shareholders' interests through the issuance of new capital." It lost -24.1 million in the fiscal year ended September 30.
(SKP) will add twice-weekly flights from Vienna to Catania and Olbia on March 31. It will add frequencies on routes to Milan Bergamo, Lisbon and Larnaca.
February 2008: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) conceded that it will not be profitable this financial year, which ends September 30. Management told a shareholders meeting in Vienna that (SKP) is working on maintaining its financial viability. CFO, Nick Manoudakis said it will continue to work on cutting costs and has asked pilots (FC) to reduce airplane speed to save fuel. (SKP) also is open to investment from other carriers, he said. Asked by shareholders to reveal how much cash remained from a 15 million/$21.9 million loan from investor York Global Finance, he revealed that 9 million had been spent on airplane orders and cabin interiors. "We still have some cash left," he said.
(SKP)'s new CEO said the carrier is in a "turnaround" and hopes to stem its losses and ensure financial viability. It launched out of Bratislava in February 2002 with a single Brasilia. By last September, it was operating 14 737-500s and serving 44 destinations in 10 countries. It lost -24.1 million/-$35.7 million in the fiscal year ended September 30, 2007, and -57.3 million in the prior year. "We had a high cost base, low yields and massive growth," CEO, Jason Bitter said at the recent Raymond James Growth Airline Conference in New York. "We came through with a chainsaw. Costs we can control a lot better than revenue."
Bitter said the carrier has consolidated its five bases into two, eliminated some routes and increased frequencies on others. It also eliminated -200 positions. "We fly to less places more often," he said. "We are still trying to lower costs." (SKP) is modeling its cost structure on Ryanair (RYR)'s and hopes to become one of the leading Low Cost Carrier (LCC)s in Europe, he said. It benefits from the lower employee costs in Slovakia, and is counting on the growing number of passengers wishing to travel between Eastern and Western Europe.
(SKP) launched thrice-weekly, Bratislava - Istanbul Ataturk.
March 2008: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) posted a loss of -11.3 million/-$17.2 million in its fiscal first quarter ended December 31, a +17.9% improvement on the -13.8 million deficit (SKP) experienced in the year-ago period. Operating loss, however, widened -21.8% to -14.8 million from -12.2 million a year earlier. Revenue grew +32.2% to 53 million on a +44.1% increase in passengers carried to 857,953. Total operating expenses rose +30% to 59.6 million.
(SKP) flew 797 million (RPK)s passenger traffic in the December quarter, up +28.5% from the year-ago period, on a +35.2% lift in capacity to 1.09 billion (ASK)s. Seat load factor consequently fell -5 points to 70.7% LF. Actual seats flown jumped +54.3% to 1.2 million, primarily owing to a higher average number of airplanes in its fleet - - 14 versus 12.1 in the year-ago period - - a +14.1% improvement in airplane utilization from an average of 9:15 hours per day to 10:33 hours and shorter sectors. Cost per seat decreased -15.9% to 56 in the reporting quarter, reflecting mainly the benefits from consolidating the network from five to three bases in Vienna, Prague, and Bratislava. Bases in Krakow and Budapest were abandoned. Revenue per seat declined -14.3% to 43.7, "mainly caused by a significant increase in seat capacity available in the quarter and the shorter average sector length," the carrier said in its financial statement. (CASK) fell -6.3% to 6.18 euro cents and yield improved +2.9 points to 6.66 euro cents.
At December 31, (SKP)'s network encompassed 43 routes to 30 destinations in 17 countries, compared to 49 routes to 29 destinations in 18 countries a year earlier.
(SKP) has sold one of its winter airplane delivery slots and deferred another five in a bid to rein in losses and bring its development under control. Although revenue for the three months to 31 December 2007 rose by one-third, fuel costs soared by +40% and overall costs were up by +30%. The airline continues its efforts to bring its finances into line. It ordered up to 32 737-700s in 2005, but last December opted to trim this expansion to 30. Under a revised agreement with Boeing (TBC), the airline has cut another two airplanes and extended the period over which it will take deliveries. (SKP) ordered 16 737-700s in 2005 and placed options on +16 more. Ten of those options were subsequently firmed. Fourteen airplanes have been delivered, but in December the airline said it had sold two of the new jets in its backlog. Its latest agreement shows that it has reduced its outstanding firm airplanes to nine, by selling a winter delivery slot, and cutting the number of purchase rights to five. (SKP) adds that it has deferred deliveries of five airplanes, stating: We have recently concluded a revised delivery schedule with Boeing (TBC) to provide a more profitable future capacity growth in line with managements new strategy. Before the revision, (SKP) had expected to take 30 airplanes by 2011. The adjustments and the new delivery schedule will give the airline up to 28 airplanes by 2012.
(SKP) will cut several routes from its summer schedule, as it looks to stem its losses, starting with its thrice-daily, Vienna - Innsbruck. CEO, Jason Bitter told the "Austrian Press Agency" that the airline will become "more aggressive in avoiding economic risks" and that unprofitable routes will be cut quicker than before.
April 2008: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) transported 307,540 passengers in March, up +16.2% from the year-ago month. Load factor fell -14.2 points to 73.6% LF.
737-7GL (37233, OM-NGQ), delivery.
June 2008: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) added Vienna-based (ASP) as an investor. The firm purchased 7.24% of (SKP) on the bourse for approximately 7 million/$10.9 million. (ASP) reportedly was attracted by the fact that (SKP) has reduced its costs -17.7% over the past six months. However, it still faces a first-half loss of around -28.5 million.
July 2008: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) transported 344,383 passengers last month, up +4.4% from the year-ago month. Load factor fell -2.1 points to 77% LF.
2nd quarter = net loss of -$26 million (-$8 million).
(SKP) opened its fourth base at Kosice. It has invested 30 million in the facility, which it is calling a "satellite hub" and where it expects to handle 340,000 passengers this year, up +80% from 2007. It is offering 11 daily flights from the airport to Split, Bratislava, Prague, London Stansted, Dublin, and Manchester. (SKP) will close eight routes and ground two of its 15 737-700s for the coming winter schedule. Chairman, Jason Bitter confirmed that it will drop routes from Bratislava and Kosice to Cork, Dublin and Birmingham, as well from Prague to Sophia and Lisbon. He said rising fuel prices have made operating certain longer routes uneconomical.
August 2008: SkyEurope (SKP) transported a total of 387,122 passengers in July 2008 with a load factor of 80.1% LF. In the 12 months ended July 2008, (SKP) carried 3,742,631 passengers, an increase of +16.7% compared to the same period of last year. The load factor in the past 12 months reached 74.4% LF.
(SKP) is the first low-cost, low-fare airline in Central Europe, launched from the only European country previously without a scheduled airline. Now has a network that links 44 cities in 19 countries. With five bases in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia, (SKP) is the first Central European carrier to operate from multiple hubs in the region.
Employees = 927.
(IATA) Code: NE - 210. (ICAO) Code: ESK (Callsign - RELAX).
Parent organization/shareholders: Free Float/others (71.9%); York Capital Management (23.1%); & Merril Lynch (5%).
Owns: SkyEurope Hungary (100%); (IATA) Code: 5P. (ICAO) Code: HSK.
(Telephone: +36 29 551 361). (FAX: +36 29 551 373).
Alliances: (CSA) Czech Airlines; & Sterling (STR).
Main Base: Bratislava M R Stefanik Airport (BTS).
Hubs: Budapest Ferihegy Airport (BUD); Krakow Balice International Airport (KRK); Prague Ruzyne Airport (PRG); Vienna International Airport(VIE) & Warsaw Frederic Chopin Airport (WAW).
Domestic, Scheduled Destinations: Bratislava; Kosice; & Poprad/Tatry.
International, Scheduled Destination: Amsterdam; Barcelona; Basle/Mulhouse; Bucharest; Budapest; Cologne; Copenhagen; Dublin; Innsbruck; Krakow; London; Manchester; Milan; Nice; Paris; Prague; Rome; Salzburg; Sofia; Stuttgart; Vienna; & Warsaw.
September 2008: SkyEurope (SKP) transported a record number of 414,751 passengers in August 2008 with a load factor of 84.9% LF. In the 12 months ended August 2008, the Company has carried 3,756,144 passengers, an increase of +15.3% compared to the same period of last year.
(SKP) suffered a -16.8 million/-$24.8 million loss in the fiscal third quarter ended June 30, widened from a -5.1 million deficit in the year-ago quarter, as high fuel prices offset the company's continuing efforts to cut costs and streamline its operation. The airline said it responded by raising fares and cutting capacity in addition to eliminating "poor performing" routes, but revenue rose just +0.1% year-over-year to 67.9 million and (EBIT) declined to a -14 million loss from the -5.2 million lost in the year-ago quarter.
(SKP) said ancillary revenue rose +81.2% year-over-year thanks largely to a new baggage fee. "We see this trend continuing and accelerating through the fourth quarter," it said.
Passenger numbers were up +3.3% to 957,382, but (RPK)s dropped -1.6% to 963 million. Capacity climbed +3.5% to 1.26 billion (ASK)s and load factor fell -5.2 points to 74.3% LF. Yield increased +1.7% to 7.05 euro cents and unit revenue declined -3.3% to 5.41 euro cents. Unit cost rose +8.2% to 6.53 euro cents, but (CASK) excluding fuel, improved +7% to 4.43 euro cents.
(SKP) took delivery of its 15th 737-700 during the quarter and now operates 76 routes to 41 destinations. It has 11 more airplanes on firm order and three purchase rights and expects to be operating 26 planes by 2014. It will return two leased airplanes to (GECAS) (GEF), one in October, and the second in January, and replace them with new airplanes, scheduled for delivery in May and June 2009.
"We are expecting revenue growth in the 4th quarter (Q4) 2008, versus (Q4) 2007 with higher passenger numbers and ancillary revenue growth. However, growth during this quarter will be slower than it has been in past years, due to capacity reductions undertaken due to high fuel prices," the company said, adding that going forward its maturing network will be "less seasonal and price-sensitive and better able to cope with higher fuel prices and the results of a slowing global economy."
According to The world's foremost Low-Cost Carrier (LCC) Survey run by Skytrax Research of London, (SKP) is the best low-cost airline in Eastern Europe. The results of the survey for 2007/2008 represent the opinion of more than >90 nationalities world-wide. According to the survey, (SKP) was also ranked the 3rd best low-cost airline in the whole of Europe.
Both results of this prestigious survey are based on airline traveller opinions and experiences. It is one of the most objective methods how to assess and compare the airlines services.
Best low-cost airline Eastern Europe final standings:
1. SkyEurope Airlines (SKP).
2. Wizz Air (WZZ).
3. Blue Air (BLD).
Best low-cost airline Europe final standings:
1. easyJet (EZY).
2. AirBerlin (BER).
3. SkyEurope Airlines (SKP).
(SKP) is scraping by with more cash from core investors. It is now exploring strategic alternatives.
(SKP) has decided on a capacity reduction, giving it 26 airplanes by 2013. Although (SKP) ordered up to 32 737-700s three years ago, it has backed down on its commitment: first to 30 airplanes by 2011, then to 28 by 2012. Fifteen of these have been delivered. It has firmed two of its five outstanding options, and will return two leased airplanes to (GECAS) (GEF).
October 2008: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) said that York Global Finance, which holds 29.9% of (SKP), has offered to buy the remaining shares and inject more capital into the carrier. It said it will negotiate with York, but "will continue to look for alternative investors who might ascribe a higher value to the company's airline business," according to "Reuters."
(SKP) launched twice-weekly, Prague - Bari, Italy.
November 2008: Fly Holding, the parent company of MyAir (MYR) and Eastern European budget operator, SkyEurope (SKP) are discussing a possible alliance. They have signed a memo of understanding (MOU) to explore a future collaboration, which could ultimately lead to them acquiring a shareholding in each other.
December 2008: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) reported a -59.4 million/-$75.4 million loss in the fiscal year ended September 30, more than double the -24.1 million suffered in the prior year, as benefits from a restructured and streamlined network failed to materialize in time to offset record fuel costs. (SKP) consolidated capacity at Vienna, Bratislava, and Prague in order "to establish a less seasonal and price-sensitive network" with higher airplane and crew utilization, but experienced "downward pressure on scheduled revenue" as the new network matured. "This trend is expected to full reverse in Fiscal Year (FY) 2009," it said.
Full-year revenue rose +10.5% to 260.9 million, and operating loss deepened to -56.1 million/-$71 million from -20.9 million in the year ended September 30, 2007. It transported 3.8 million passengers, up +13.6%, and ended the year with 15 737-700s, one more than the previous year. Load factor fell -8.1 points to 73.6% LF and unit revenue declined -5.4% year-over-year to 5.28 euro cents. Unit cost rose +5.6% to 6.41 euro cents, but was down -5.3% to 4.46 euro cents, excluding fuel. Ancillary revenue rose +110.4%.
In November, (SKP) transported 219,590 passengers, down -22.8%, on a -21.4% capacity cut. Load factor fell -1.2 points to 68.4% LF.
(SKP) is in payment default with (GE) Commercial Aviation Services (GEF) from which it leases most of its 737-700s.
In the current fiscal year, (SKP) expects to "benefit from the positive effects" of its restructuring, and to enjoy "strong revenue growth" owing to "network maturity" and ancillary revenue. Winter season capacity will be down -19% year-over-year.
SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) was granted a 10 million/$13.4 million bridge loan by Longstock SAPO, a joint venture between Athens-based luxury transport services provider and Longstock Financial of Lisbon. (SKP) said the loan was "in light of a possible future equity injection." It also said that loans of 15 million and 10 million granted by York Global Finance and due for repayment have been extended to January 15.
SAPO International, an Athens-based luxury transport services provider, and Lisbon-based Longstock Financial Group, announced formation of a holding company that "intends to acquire a controlling interest" in (SKP) parent SkyEurope Holding. The Gibraltar-based Joint Venture (JV), Longstock SAPO, said it does not intend to launch a mandatory takeover bid and plans to "apply for the restructuring privilege under the Austrian Takeover Act." (SKP) is based in Vienna. (SKP) lost -59.4 million/-$78.1 million in the fiscal year ended September 30. It is unclear whether York Global Finance, which holds 29.9%, remains interested in acquiring the remaining shares.
January 2009: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) transported 268,867 passengers in December, a -13.3% decline from the year-ago month. Load factor rose +5 points to 67.7% LF.
(SKP) announced that (GECAS) (GEF) terminated leases on six 737s effective January 8 and the airplanes have been returned to the lessor. (SKP) said the capacity has been "replaced" and that all scheduled flights are being operated, although it provided no further details. It also said that Longstock SAPO, a Greek/Portuguese investor, agreed to extend the deadline on the first installment of its 10 million bridge loan announced last month and that E-Clear UK will continue releasing funds from credit card sales. (SKP) said E-Clear currently is holding around 10 million.
(SKP) received a one-month extension to February 15 on a 15 million/$19.8 million loan granted in December 2007 and a 10 million loan from last September from York Global Finance.
February 2009: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) transported 173,692 passengers in January, down -23.5% year-over-year. Load factor rose +4.1 points to 62.5% LF.
March 2009: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) transported 160,619 passengers in February, down -36.9% year-over-year. Load factor rose +7.6 points to 74.8% LF.
April 2009: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) transported 307,540 passengers last month, down -39% year-over-year. Load factor rose +2.7 points to 73.6% LF.
June 2009: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) said May revenue per passenger rose "nearly +2%" year-over-year. It took delivery of two 737s during the month and will take an additional two in June, phasing out wet-leased airplanes. It transported 333,183 passengers in May, down -37.5%, and saw load factor rise +1 point to 74.8% LF.
Although improved, (SKP)'s first quarter resulted in a net loss of -$23 million or -$18 million, ex-special items. Its fleet dropped from 14 airplanes to 10.
(SKP) received court permission to operate and reorganize under creditor protection, during which it will continue to fly its full schedule. CEO, Jason Bitter said (SKP) will operate "without disruption" and that suppliers "will be fully paid" during the restructuring period, which was not defined. It appointed Reynolds Partners to help it secure new investment. "There has been ongoing investor interest in (SKP) and its business plan, although the company's debt has been a barrier," it said.
(SKP) reported an -18.4 million/-$25.5 million loss in the fiscal second quarter ended March 31, widened -6.8% from a -17.2 million deficit in the year-ago period. Operating revenue fell -32.7% to 32 million as (SKP) cut capacity, and its operating loss deepened to -15.7 million from -21.4 million. (SKP) operated 10 airplanes at quarter's end, down from 14 the prior year.
July 2009: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) transported 214,481 passengers in June, down -37.7% year-over-year, on a -35.6% cut in available seats. Load factor was down -2.5 points to 74.6% LF.
SkyEurope Holding announced the departure of (SKP) Chairman & CEO, Jason Bitter by "mutual agreement." Air Arabia (ABZ) Group appointed former (SKP) Chairman & CEO, Jason Bitter as CEO of its Air Arabia Maroc (AAM) subsidiary. He was replaced by former Vice Chairman & CFO, Nick Manoudakis. (SKP) is operating under creditor protection.
August 2009: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) said it has secured a new investor, FOCUS Equity BV, which it said plans to invest +16.5million/+$23.2 million. (SKP) also said it will lease two 737-300s from Air Slovakia (SLO).
(SKP) was forced to suspend all operations from Vienna after missing an August 14 deadline to pay outstanding fees to Vienna International (VIE). Sources close to (VIE) said that (SKP) owes it 4 million/$5.7 million. (SKP) has been operating under creditor protection in Slovakia since June. One of its 737s has been parked at Paris Orly for two months because a French court ordered that the airline not be allowed access to the airplane until it pays debts owed in France.
(SKP) said flights formerly operated from Vienna will depart from Bratislava going forward. Nevertheless, it clearly is in serious financial distress and it is uncertain how long it can keep operating.
(SKP) is still banned from Vienna International (VIE), but the airport and (SKP) have started talks again. "No solution" has been found thus far, (VIE) CEO, Herbert Kaufmann told Austrian media. (SKP) was forced to suspend all operations from (VIE) after missing an August 14 deadline to pay outstanding fees believed to total around 4 million/$5.7 million. Kaufmann said an agreement would be contingent on (SKP) paying past debts and explaining how it planned to make payments in the future. Meanwhile, hundreds of passengers reportedly have contacted (SKP) demanding refunds for cancelled Vienna flights.
September 2009: SkyEurope Airlines (SKP) suspended operations, hours after airport operators in Prague and Bratislava said they would stop handling (SKP)'s flights because it is behind on payments. Vienna (VIE) halted (SKP)'s flights in mid-August and (SKP) had been shuttling (VIE) passengers to/from Bratislava. (SKP), which launched in early 2002, issued a brief statement on its website saying that it "has suspended its sales and operations immediately" and that it could not guarantee refunds on ticket purchases.
(SKP) released a statement saying the trustee appointed by a Slovak court to oversee (SKP)'s restructuring "assessed that the company did not have sufficient funds for sustaining operations" and opted to file for bankruptcy. (SKP) said it "tried to set up a bridge financing facility to remedy the liquidity shortfall, but this facility was not funded in the last moment" and that "recent actions of suppliers" and falling passenger numbers and revenue contributed to the decision.
(CEO), Nick Manoudakis told Austria's "ORF" television that approximately 280,000 people now hold useless tickets and that those who used credit cards to purchase tickets online (about 70%) may be able to get refunds if the money had not already been transferred to SkyEurope (SKP). Manoudakis said (SKP) made a mistake in selling so many tickets at fares as low as 9/$12.88. "This was too low to cover our operating costs," he said. (SKP) hopes to keep the "SkyEurope" brand but will need secured financing in order to do so.
Click below for photos:
4 737-33V (CFM56-3B1) (3072-29332, /99 HA-LKR; 3084-29333, HA-LKV, 2005-11; 3089-29334, /99 HA-LKS; 3094-29335, /99 HA-LKT; 3102-29336, /99 HA-LKU), EX-(EZY) 2005-06. ALL (SKP) HUNGARY OPS. 29332; RTND; LST (BAU) 2007-01. 149Y.
2 737-300 (CFM56-3), (SLO) LSD 2009-08.
0 737-5YO (CFM56-3B1) (2220-25185, /92 OM-SEF; 2236-25786, /92 OM-SEA "ADRIANA"), EX-(ROS), GECAS (GEF) LSD. BOTH RTND. 133Y.
0 737-5YO (CFM56-3B1) (2260-25191, /92 OM-SEB), (GEF) LSD 2004-02. RTND. 133Y.
0 737-5YO (CFM56-3C1) (2286-25288, OM-SEC; 2288-25289, OM-SEG "TATJANA BATINIC, MISS AUSTRIA 2006" - SEE PHOTO), EX-(THY), (GEH) LSD 2004-05. 25289 RF (SKP) HUNGARY 2005-10. RTND. 133Y.
0 737-53C (CFM56-3) (2041-24826, OM-SED; 2243-24827, OM-SEE), (LOT) WET-LSD 2004-05. RTND. LST (ARN). 133Y.
4 +11/9 ORDERS 737-76N (CFM56-7B22) (1952-32674, /06 OM-NGD; 1974-32676, /06 OM-NGE; 2089-32680, /06 OM-NGF; 1889-32684, /06 OM-NGA; 1919-32695, /06 OM-NGB; 1922-32696, /06 OM-NGC; 2165-34753, /07 OM-NGG; 2172-34754, /07 OM-NGH; 2187-34755, /07 OM-NGJ; 2208-34756, 2007-04 OM-NGK; 2241-34757, /07 OM-NGL; 2266-34758, /07 HA-LKM/OM-NGM), 12 (GEF) LSD. 2 RETURNED 2008-09. 32674; 32676; 32684; 32695; 32696; 34766; 34757; 34758; RTND & LST (ARG) 2009-04. 34754; 34757; 34758; RTND, LST ANADOLU JET. WITH WINGLETS. 149Y.
2 737-7GL (CFM56-7B22) (2320-34759, /07 OM-NGN; 2578-37223, /08 OM-NGQ), 149Y.
1 737-7GL (CFM56-7B22) (2352-34760, OM-NGP, 2007-08), WITH WINGLETS. 149Y.
0 737-7GL (CFM56-7B22) (2401-34761, 5N-MJE; 2427-34762, 5N-MJF), BOTH ST (AKI) 2007-10. 149Y.
6 EMBRAER EMB-120ER BRASILIA (PW118) (235, OM-SAY, 2004-08; 239, /91 OM-FLY; 175, /90 OM-SKY; 092, /88 OM-SPY). 30Y.
Click below for photos:
NICK MANOUDAKIS, CHAIRMAN, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (CEO), CHIEF OPERATIONS OFFICER (COO), & CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER (CFO) (2009-07).
STEPHEN GREENWAY, CHIEF COMMERCIAL OFFICER (CCO), EX-(VOZ)/(VAA)/(QAN) (2007-11).
RALPH PRECLIK, CHIEF PRODUCT OFFICER.
TOMAS KIKA, HEAD COMMUNICATIONS (firstname.lastname@example.org)
PETER PELEC, FLIGHT OPERATIONS MANAGER.
GABRIEL TARI, TECHNICAL MANAGER (T: (42-17) 5441-1991).
LANE ZIRNHELT, FINANCE MANAGER (2006-08).
JANA KUCEROVA, FINANCIAL CONTROLLER.
BENJAMIN DJIANE, COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER (2006-08).
PAVOL MLADY, COMMERCIAL MANAGER.
LUCIA STIAVNICKA, MARKETING MANAGER.