||THOMAS COOK AIRLINES BELGIUM
||+32 9 241 16 11
||+32 9 241 16 12
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TCW-2013-10 - SUNNY HEART BRAND
Formed in 2001 and started operations in 2002. Established by Thomas Cook AG (JMA) to serve the Belgian charter market. Regional & international, charter, passenger and cargo, jet airplane services.
9052 Zwijnaarde-Gand, Belgium
Belgium (Kingdom of Belgium) was established in 1830, it covers an area of 30,519 sq km, its population is 10.1 million, its capital city is Brussels, and its official languages are Flemish and French.
March 2002: Started operations.
January 2004: Starts low-cost, seat-only sales.
February 2004: Belgium Exel (BXL) 767-383ER (24848, PH-AHY), Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) wet-leased, operates long-haul routes for tour operator Thomas Cook Belgium (TCW). Set up by the Dutch Exel Aviation Group (HOL), (BXL) was formed to fill the void left by the demise of Sobelair (SBL).
A320-231 (357, OO-TCB) returned from Condor (CDF) wet-lease.
March 2004: Thomas Cook AG (JMA)/(TCW) sustained losses in 2003 = -EUR 251 million/-$310.3 million: 12.5 million passengers (PAX) (-6.4%); 84% LF (load factor); and said it would cut its German workforce by -550 jobs.
A320-214 (1975, OO-TCI), GATX (GAX) leased.
November 2004: A320-212 (313), Condor (CDF) wet-leased for 18 months, to be followed by another in April 2005, wet-leased for 6 months, A320-212 (345), ex-Onur Air (ONU), Oasis Leasing leased.
August 2005: 199 employees (including 51 Flight Crew (FC); 108 Cabin Attendants (CA); & 18 Maintenance Technicians (MT)).
December 2005: Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium (TCW) will inaugurate non-stop service from Liege to Barcelona and to Palermo on April 28th. The airline will operate 2x-weekly to Barcelona and a weekly service to Palermo using an A320.
March 2006: Thomas Cook Airlines of Belgium (TCW) reported a pre-tax profit of +€3.2 million/+$3.8 million on revenues of €132.36 million in the financial year ended October 31, 2005. (TCW) will add a 6th A320 in the coming months to accommodate its forecast growth. Launched in 2002, it transported 997,100 passengers aboard 3,339 flights to 45 leisure destinations during the fiscal year. "In 4 years' time, we managed to become a financially healthy carrier owing to the professionalism of our team and the lessons learned from the many bankruptcies in the Belgian airline sector."
May 2006: Thomas Cook Airlines (Belgium) (TCW) launched a seasonal Brussels to Tivat service, operating weekly aboard an A320 through September 29.
February 2007: UK-based MyTravel (GUE) and German tourist conglomerate, Thomas Cook (JMA)/(TCW) are merging in a deal that will create the 2nd-biggest travel company in Europe behind (TUI) (TUG).
The new company, called Thomas Cook (JMA)/(TCW) Group, will produce combined revenue of about €12 billion/$15.6 billion, selling holidays to some 19 million customers a year. It will be based in London.
MyTravel (GUE) shareholders will own 48% of the combined company with the controlling 52% held by Thomas Cook (JMA)/(TCW)'s German owner KarstadtQuelle, which agreed in December to buy Lufthansa (DLH)'s 50% stake in Thomas Cook (JMA)/(TCW) for €800 million. The merger is expected to be complete by June and is conditional on the approval of MyTravel (GUE) shareholders, competition clearances and completion of the KarstadtQuelle-(DLH) transaction.
In December, MyTravel (GUE) reported its first annual profit in five years after a major restructuring exercise, cutting costs and selling real estate. According to the MyTravel (GUE) website, the companies in the group operate 31 airplanes.
The move eventually is expected to generate "at least" -£75 million/-$146.2 million of cost savings per year, the 2 groups said. Specific information concerning cost synergies was not supplied, nor was the future status of the airline portfolio comprising (JMA), Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium (TCW), Condor Airlines (CDF), (GUE), and MyTravel Airways A/S (PRH) detailed.
The merger ended hopes of the UK's First Choice Holidays (ATZ) for a possible tie-up. It had offered for sale its mainstream package holiday business, which includes European 787 launch customer First Choice Airways (ATZ), and held preliminary talks on possible bids with both MyTravel (GUE) and Thomas Cook (JMA)/(TCW). The (ATZ) board announced the termination of those talks.
MyTravel (GUE) (CEO) Peter McHugh said the combined company will not need First Choice (ATZ)'s package business to compete with (TUI) (TUG). "This merger is quite a feat unto itself," he said. "We're the second leading travel company in Europe and aspire to be number one." (TUI) (TUG) had revenue of €18.2 billion in 2005.
October 2007: Paxport announced the launch of PaxRelax, a Web-based sales platform that allows airlines and tour operators "to sell services such as choice of seats, catering, excess and/or special baggage." The launch customer is "Thomas Cook Northern Europe" (TCW), which will offer the service to customers in Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Finland.
November 2007: Sabena Technics (SAB) renewed its contract for line and light maintenance of Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium (TCW)'s 6 A320s. The initial agreement was signed 3 years ago, and now is extended for an undetermined period. Sabena (SAB) also has a 5-year contract for component support of (TCW)'s A320s.
April 2008: Thomas Cook Airlines (JMA)/(TCW) and MyTravel Airways (GUE)/(PRH) will operate as one airline under the Thomas Cook Airlines (JMA) brand.
May 2008: Thomas Cook Airlines (Belgium) (TCW) operates holiday charter flights from Belgium to the Mediterranean resort areas.
Employees = 213.
(IATA) Code: FQ - 583. (ICAO) Code: TCW (Callsign - THOMAS COOK).
Parent organization/shareholders: Thomas Cook (100%).
Main Base: Brussels National airport (BRU).
June 2009: Air France Industries (AFI) said that Thomas Cook (JMA) renewed its existing (CFM56-5B) engine support contract for 16 A320s/A321s operated by Thomas Cook Airlines (UK) (JMA)/(GUE) and Thomas Cook Scandinavia AS (PRH). The contract's coverage has been extended to add 5 A320s operated by Thomas Cook Belgium (TCW).
March 2010: Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium (TCW) will add a 7th A320 configured with 180 seats in May.
A319-132 (2362, OO-TCS), CIT Group (TCI) leased, ex-(M-ABEL).
February 2013: The Thomas Cook Group has detailed plans to bring together its Belgian, German and UK airlines under a new structure and leadership team.
German carrier Condor (CDF), Thomas Cook Airlines (GUE)/(JMA) in the UK and Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium will be brought together as one “airline segment” from March 1. The Thomas Cook Group describes the move as “an important step” in its airline strategy, aimed at increasing efficiency within the group.
The airline segment will be led by a new Group Airline Management Board, chaired jointly by group head of air travel, Christoph Debus and Condor (CDF) (CEO) Ralf Teckentrup. Other board members will comprise Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia (PRH) (CEO) Torben Ostergaard, Head of Group Maintenance, Paul Horstink, and Thomas Cook Group Procurement Director Nikolaus Kirner.
Thomas Cook Airlines UK (GUE)/(JMA) Managing Director Frank Pullman will retire March 1. On the same day, Cor Vrieswijk will join Thomas Cook Airlines UK (GUE)/(JMA) as (COO). Vrieswijk, whose previous roles include easyJet (EZY) (COO) and interim (CEO) of Air Malta (MLT), will coordinate and oversee all operational activities across Thomas Cook Airlines as part of his wider remit.
“As we strive to meet the needs of our customers by offering greater flexibility, better choice, high-touch service, on-time performance and real value, at a time when the European airline industry is experiencing major change, we believe that our airline will be stronger as one integrated business,” Debus said.
However, Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia (PRH) will not come under the new structure. “Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia (PRH), which currently operates a different business model, will work closely with the new Group airline, coordinating across all functional areas, while exploring ways to integrate more fully in the medium term,” the group said.
Over recent years, the group has cut capacity and sought to cut its headcount in a bid to remain competitive.
October 2013: All airplanes in the Thomas Cook Group: Thomas Cook Airlines (GUE)/(JMA); Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium (TCW); Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia (PRH), and Condor Airlines (CDF) will soon feature a new logo and livery under its ‘sunny heart’ brand. The new look features a yellow heart and is part of the group’s transformation plan, the company said.
SEE ATTACHED - - "TCW-2013-10 - SUNNY HEART BRAND."
The new ‘sunny heart’ brand will be featured across most of the company’s brands and market activities, including Neckermann in Europe, Ving in Sweden, Condor (CDF) in Germany and Airtours in the UK.
Thomas Cook said that “the intention isn’t to re-brand all with the sunny heart, but they form part of the group architecture and will, in most cases, carry the heart as some part of their logo”.
Harriet Green Group (CEO) of the Thomas Cook Group said: “This isn’t just a rollout of a new logo, it’s about a promise. What we’re announcing today is a renewed promise to our customers, our people and suppliers. A promise that we’re putting them at the heart of our transformation it’s the essence of who we are.” She added: “The heart will appear on the web, in brochures, in and on our airplanes, in our concept hotels, our other hotels, and in our stores: in short, everywhere that our customers connect with us.”
UK tour operator Thomas Cook has reshuffled a number of senior executive positions at its airline group:
Condor (CDF) Managing Director Ulrich Johannwille has been appointed Group Financial Director. However, he will also retain his existing role at the helm of (CDF). His position on the airline group’s management board has been newly created, with the Finance Directors of the airline subsidiaries in Belgium, Germany, Scandinavia and UK reporting to Johannwille.
Christian Schmitt Condor (CDF)’s Head of Ground Operations, has been promoted to the group’s Director of Operations, where he will report to Cor Vrieswijk Head of Operations.
Meanwhile, Uwe Klenovsky will succeed Wolfgang John as Chief Commercial Officer at Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium (TCW), effective November 1st 2013.
April 2014: Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium (TCW) has begun operations at Lille (LIL), beginning flights to Heraklion (HER), Ajaccio (AJA) and Fuerteventura (FUE) all on April 19th. Somewhat uniquely, every 3 weeks the weekly (Saturdays) Fuerteventura flights are operated via Tenerife, whereas both Heraklion (2x-weekly, Mondays and Saturdays) and Ajaccio (weekly, Saturdays) are both flown direct. (TCW) is also offering some additional services to Agadir and Rhodes starting this week, but do not operate on a regular scheduled basis. Jetairfly (TUB) provides the competition on the flights to Fuerteventura and Heraklion, which it operates weekly, whereas Volotea (VLZ) operates 3x-weekly on the 1,056 km sector to Ajaccio. All flights are operated by (TCW)’s 180Y-seat A320s.
July 2014: Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium (TCW) expanded its Brussels (BRU) offering with the addition of 3 new routes. On June 28th, (TCW) added weekly operations (Saturdays) on the 1,051 km sector to Ajaccio (AJA) in France, a route which is already flown by Jetairfly (TUB) (2x-weekly) and Brussels Airlines (DAT)/(EBA) (weekly). The same day, it also inaugurated weekly flights (Saturdays) to Bastia (BIA), competing with Brussels Airlines (DAT)/(EBA) (weekly flights) and Jetairfly (also weekly flights). Both of the French airport pairs are served using its 144-seat A319s. Lastly, on June 29th, (TCW) started serving the 1,210 km sector to Split (SPU) with 2x-weekly flights (Wednesdays and Sundays), using its 180-seat A320s. There is no competition on the Croatian route.
November 2014: The Thomas Cook Group has announced an agreement with Amadeus, becoming the 1st leisure carriers to adopt the Amadeus Altéa solutions. 4 of Thomas Cook group airlines based in Germany, the UK, Scandinavia and Belgium have adopted Amadeus’ Altéa suite as a single platform to manage reservations, inventory and departure control.
June 2015: A320-212 (1381, OO-TCX), ex-(D-AICI) delivery.
April 2016: Thomas Cook Group Airlines chose MedAire’s MedLink medical advice and assistance service. The service will provide round-the-clock service to the Group’s airlines including Thomas Cook Airlines UK (GUE)/(JMA), Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium (TCW), Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia (PRH) and Condor Flugdienst (CDF). The Group has used MedAire’s aviation security program since June 2015.
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TCW-A320-214 - 2013-07
0 757-230 (RB211-535E4) (274-24738, PH-DBB), (DUT) WET-LST 2003-06. RTND 2004-05.
1 A319-132 (2362, OO-TCS "SUNSHINE"), (TCI) LSD 2012-03, EX-(M-ABEL).
0 A320-212 (CFM56-5A3) (313, /92 OO-; 345, /92), EX-(ONU), (CDF) 18 MTH WET-LSD 2004-11. RTND. 174Y.
0 A320-212 (CFM56-5A3) (343, /92 OO-TCK "ENJOY;" 420, /93 OO-TCM "EXPLORE;" 436, /93 OO-TCL "DISCOVER"), (GAX), LSD 2005-04. 180Y.
1 A320-212 (CFM56-5A3) (1381, OO-TCX), EX-(D-AICI) 2015-06. 180Y.
1 A320-214 (653, /96 OO-TCP "DESIRE"), MACQUARIE LSD 2008-03. "KABOUTER4 PLOP" COLORS. 180Y.
1 A320-214 (CFM56-5B4/P) (1787, /02 OO-TCJ "INSPIRE"), (GAX) LSD 2004-03. "KAMAGURKA" COLORS. 180Y.
1 A320-214 (CFM56-5B4/P) (1929, /03 OO-TCH "EXPERIENCE"), THOMAS COOK AG LSD 2003-02, 180Y.
1 A320-214 (CFM56-5B4/P) (1975, /03 OO-TCI "RELAX," 2004-03), (GAX) LSD. 180Y.
1 A320-231 (V2500-A1) (354, /92 OO-TCF "DISCOVER;" 357, /92 OO-TCB "EXPLORE;" 394, /92 OO-TCE "INSPIRE;" 411, /93 OO-TCC "DREAM;" 443, /93 OO-TCG "RELAX"), (JMA) LSD, 357 RF (CDF) 2004-02. 394 RTND, LST (ABU) 2004-04. 357; 431; 354; RTND TO (JMA) 2004-10. 180Y.
1 A320-232 (V2527-A5) (425, /93 OO-TCN "DREAM"), KIM CLIJSTERS TITLE. (TCI) LSD 2006-06. 180Y.
1 A320-232 (V2527-A5) (453, /93 OO-TCR "COOKIE"), (TCI) LSD 2010-04. 168Y.
CHRISTOPH DEVUS, CO-CHAIRMAN THOMAS COOK AIRLINES GROUP, (2013-03).
RALF TECKENTRUP, CO-CHAIRMAN THOMAS COOK AIRLINES GROUP, EX-(CDF) (2013-03).
MS HARRIET GREEN, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (CEO), THOMAS COOK AIRLINES GROUP.
FRANK PULLMAN, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR (RETIRED 2013-03).
COR VRIESWIJK, HEAD OPERATIONS, THOMAS COOK GROUP, CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER (COO), EX-(EZY)/(MLT) (2013-03).
ULRICH JOHANNWILLE, THOMAS COOK GROUP FINANCIAL DIRECTOR & CONDOR (CDF) MANAGING DIRECTOR (2013-10)
The Finance Directors of the Thomas Cook airline subsidiaries in Belgium, Germany, Scandinavia and the UK will report to Johannwille.
CHRISTIAN SCHMITT, DIRECTOR OPERATIONS THOMAS COOK GROUP, EX-(CDF) (2013-10).
Christian reports to Cor Vrieswijk.
BERND BECHTEL, EXECUTIVE VP GROUP FLEET MANAGEMENT, THOMAS COOK GROUP.
WIM DESMET, (CEO), THOMAS COOK AIRLINES BELGIUM (TCW).
UWE KLENOVSKY, CHIEF COMMERCIAL OFFICER (TCW) (2013-11).
Uwe will be focused on developing digital sales within the airline, and will report to Ralf Teckentrup.
JENS BOYD, HEAD OF GROUP LONG-HAUL.
aero.com 30-Second Interview - - 2013-08:
The man with the plan. Jens Boyd, Head of Group Long-Haul, Thomas Cook Airlines Group (TCAG) has issued two Requests For Proposals (RFP)s in order to find two new European airport departure points, as well as two new global destinations, to help fill the spare capacity the airline group has on its 20-airplane, long-haul fleet. The Thomas Cook Airlines Group (TCAG) has issued two requests for proposals (RFP), the first being for additional frequencies to current long-haul destinations in its network out of new European departure airports that can be served by its existing 767 or A330 fleets on an inside W-pattern (out of the destination). The second (RFP) is looking to add new long-haul points in the Americas, Asia and Africa from its existing European departure points. The reason for the (RFP)s is that presently in its S13 schedules, (TCAG) employs five of its 20-strong fleet of long-haul airplanes on short- and medium-haul sectors; in the winter, the spare capacity drops to three airplanes. anna.aero discussed the (RFP)s with Jens Boyd, Head of Group Long-Haul at (TCAG) to understand how airports, and their partner tourism bodies, can secure some of the reallocation of (TCAG)’s capacity.
anna.aero (aa): What is (TCAG) looking to get out of the (RFP) process?
Jens Boyd (JB): In particular, we are seeking to obtain insightful traffic analysis, projections and firm proposals of commitment and incentives, which will be used to steer our long-term network planning process.
aa: Has (TCAG) done this type of thing before?
JB: We have never done it in such a structured manner before, as we are looking for the airline, tour operators, airport, tourism board, hotel operators, and travel agents to work together to deliver a positive result. In the past, a tourism authority may have come to just the tour operator, a decision is made and the airline is just seen only as a part of the tour operator. This is perhaps why long-haul routes have not been continued in operations, and also why there has been limited growth to new markets, as adding this type of flight is higher cost and higher risk than for short-haul. We are also looking to use our experience of developing our scheduled network, of using passenger data like (MIDT) to make more informed decisions, as we did in our recent North American expansion.
aa: Are you looking to tie-up all the spare capacity available for W14/15 and S15 from these (RFP)s, or do you think the process may have to be repeated next year?
JB: We will take that decision once we have gone through the process. We are looking to add say two relevant European departure airports, as well as two new global destinations in this iteration. But clearly, as we have the spare capacity, we could look to add more new network points if the business case is right and the strong partnerships with all stakeholders have been established.
aa: In the departure airport (from Europe) (RFP) it mentions that feed from domestic and regional airline partners like Lufthansa (DLH), (SAS), (LOT) is closely integrated to the (TCAG) product: – surely this gives preference to un-served airports like Berlin or Düsseldorf for example, where there is significant presence with Lufthansa (DLH)?
JB: Feed into the airport is important, particularly when we are talking about niche destinations where there is limited demand at the origin, but we are not limited to those feeder carriers. If Brussels Airport thinks it has the potential to become a new departure point, then they may wish to propose we work with Brussels Airlines (DAT)/(EBA) on a feeder agreement. Similarly, if Dublin wants to talk to us, it might be important that an airline like Aer Lingus (ARL) is involved in any discussions we may have. So it is down to the airport in question to suggest who we could work with.
aa: Do you think the margins achieved on seven long-haul sectors per week will be higher than those generated by the 10 - 20 short- and medium-haul sectors these airplanes are currently flying?
JB: The overall cost position of a long-haul airplane operating on a short-haul route is always going to be much worse.
aa: What is going to happen to these short-haul sectors? Will the capacity be replaced seat-for-seat?
JB: We will be back-filling this flying with a combination of our own fleet or by using wet-lease (ACMI) providers. It is always good to have a percentage of the latter in order to reduce our risk to unpredictable market changes.
aa: Could airports “buddy-up?” For example, a new European airport with a new Caribbean destination.
JB: Yes they can – it’s in the (RFP). So, for example, if Birmingham Airport thinks that in addition to a strong leisure demand, there is also local (VFR) traffic to Antigua, then we would consider that type of opportunity. In many ways, this style of approach, with both ends of a potential route working together, is taking this process to the next level.
aa: What percentage of (TCAG) long-haul’s costs are allocated to airport charges?
JB: Of course…it should be 0%!! Just kidding (he laughs). In reality, it’s around 3 - 6% of total costs.
aa: On that basis how important is the ‘airport deal’ – isn’t it more important that the business case works?
JB: You are absolutely right. The business case needs to work in the long-term, as often these new route incentives expire anyway. What we are encouraging our airport partners to do is to consider the total costs of operating from their airport. For example, how competitive are the prices fuel providers charge, or indeed ground handlers? This is important when we are considering two airports in a particular region. We were evaluating two airports situated close to each other, where the larger airport’s landing charges were three times more expensive than its smaller competitor. However, our other costs at the bigger airport were so much cheaper than those levied at the smaller airport that no amount of incentive was ever going to recover the savings of operating into the larger airport.
aa: In terms of the prospective global leisure destinations are you looking for the airport or the tourism body to take the lead?
JB: We think that airport needs to take the lead, and also to take on a broader role in the overall partnership. They are many airports which are very good at telling us about their new check-in halls or improved security processing times, but still very few take on the responsibility of being the ‘champion’ in terms of pulling together all of the other stakeholders from the destination that we want to be included in this process.
aa: Many of your existing destinations are tried and tested – is TCAG prepared to try unproven markets that are not as well-developed in order to create fresh markets for its customers?
JB: Absolutely. Last winter, we started services to Siem Rep (Cambodia), San Juan (Puerto Rico), Yangon (Myanmar), and Cape Town (South Africa). Puerto Rico and South Africa will return again for this winter. In fact, Cape Town may actually be increased. So while this route churn rate is almost as bad as those from low-cost carriers (LCC)s, we are committed to exploring network white spots where customers want to go, but can’t easily get there. In the past, we have even considered places like Siberia! We know that there are lots of Russians that take holidays near Lake Baikal, so we were interested to see why and whether it would work for us. In the end, all of the components were not there to make the numbers stack-up, but yes we are keen to fill a void perhaps where a normal scheduled airline is not prepared to go. For those airports who wish to register their interest in responding to these (RFP)s, they can contact Jan Wilken Bellmann – Jan.firstname.lastname@example.org – at the Thomas Cook Airlines Group.
ULRIK VERCRUYSSE, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (CEO).
LODE KETELE, GENERAL MANAGER.
HUGO RAES, DIRECTOR FLIGHT OPERATIONS.
HERMAN VAN STEENSTRAETEN, FINANCE DIRECTOR.