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VVC-2014-09 - TOP 11 ROUTES
VVC-2014-09 - TOP 12 DESTINATIONS
VVC-ROUTE MAP - 2013-05
Formed in 2009 and started operations in 2012. Domestic, regional & international, scheduled & charter, low cost carrier (LCC), passenger & cargo jet airplane services.
Medellin Jose Maria Cordova International Airport
COLOMBIA (REPUBLIC OF COLOMBIA) COVERS AN AREA OF 1,138,914 SQ KM, ITS POPULATION IS 43 MILLION, ITS CAPITAL CITY IS BOGOTA, AND ITS OFFICIAL LANGUAGE IS SPANISH.
April 2009: The background to Colombia's 1st low cost carrier (LCC) was initially presented as a thesis at the renowned Stanford Business School, California, USA by 4 students: William Shaw, Juan Emilio Posada, Frederick Jacobson, and Gabriel Migowski. Once the study was completed, the four pursued the idea by forming Grupo FAST and started the search for suitable investors. 3 were identified and persuaded to come on board: Grupo Bolivar, 1 of Colombia's most important financial conglomerates with a portfolio including Divivenda, Colombia's 3rd largest bank and Seguros Bolivar, Colombia's 2nd largest insurer; Grupo (IAMSA), a leading Mexican land transport services company; and Irelandia Aviation, the investment vehicle of the Ryan family and founders of Ryanair (RYN), the largest (LCC) in Europe. Irelandia specializes in the development of budget airlines around the world and has a formidable list of successful companies to its name including Ryanair (RYR) which was formed in 1985; Tiger Airways (TGR), Singapore in 2004; Allegiant Air (WJE), USA in 2005, and VivaAerobus (VVS), Mexico in 2006.
September 2009: Viva Colombia (VVC) was formed to serve 32 routes within Colombia with future plans to launch international flights to destinations in Central and South America and to the southern USA.
(IATA) Code: 5Z. (ICAO) Code: VVC - (Callsign - VIVA COLOMBIA).
Parent company/organization: Irelandia; (IAMSA); Grupo Bolivar; & Grupo (FAST).
Alliance: VivaAerobus (VVS), Mexico.
Company slogan: "Your low-cost airline" (Tu aerolinea de bajo costo").
Main Base: Medellin Jose Maria Cordova International Airport.
Domestic destinations: Apartado - Antonio Roldan Betancourt Airport; Barranquilla - Ernesto Cortissoz International Airport; Bogota - El Dorado International Airport; Bucaramanga - Palonegro International Airport; Cali - Alfonso Bonilla Aragon International Airport; Cartagena - Rafael Nunez International Airport; Monteria - Los Garzones Airport; Pereira - Matecana International Airport; and San Andreas Island - Gustavo Rojas Pinilla International Airport.
Medellin - Cartagena - Medellin
Medellin - Bogota - Medellin
Medellin - Cali - Medellin
Medellin - Barranquilla - Medellin
Medellin - San Andres - Medellin
Medellin - Montería - Medellin
Medellín - Santa Marta - Medellín
Bogota - Cartagena - Bogota
Cali - Cartagena - Cali
Cali - Santa Marta - Cali
Cali - Bogotá - Cali
Pereira - Cartagena - Pereira
Pereira - Santa Marta - Pereira
May 2012: Viva Colombia (VVC) operated its inaugural flight from its home base at Medellin Jose Maria Cordova International Airport.
November 2013: Where are all the Latin American low cost carriers (LCC)s? Aside from Brazil, Mexico, and Colombia, there are no (LCC)s in Latin America, and this is a region with an emerging middle class, rising trade and commerce, and a growing appetite for travel. Beyond these three countries, the traffic data shows that legacy airlines are capturing nearly all of this growth.
At latest count, Latin America only has 6. They are the pioneer in the region Gol (GOT) and its fellow Brazilian carrier, Azul (AZL); Mexican carriers Volaris (VLS), Interjet (AAE), and VivaAerobus (VVS), plus Medellin-based Viva Colombia (VVC). A few others have come and gone (Aires (AIR) (to (LATAM) and Webjet (WEB) to (GOL); AeroContinente Chile (CCL) and Sol, which briefly became AeroHonduras (HND), folded. The only other (LCC)s serving Latin America fly down and back from the USA or Canada.
One reason is aeropolitics. 2 of the 3 next largest Latin American markets that lack (LCC)s (Argentina and Venezuela (as well as smaller Bolivia)) are effectively closed to new entrants due to policies that favor their government-owned carriers. Those state carriers could launch (LCC)s of their own, but they have little incentive to do it.
The second answer relates to the so-called “unbalanced competition.” The next largest Latin markets that lack home-based (LCC)s after Argentina and Venezuela, are Peru, Chile, and Ecuador. (LATAM) and/or Avianca (AVI) dominate all 3 of these markets.
Juan Emilio Posada, founder of Viva Colombia (VVC) and now its Chairman, is well aware of this. “There are opportunities in countries or groups of countries where no low-cost carriers (LCC)s are present,” he says, but “the smaller the market and the more concentrated the network carriers, the greater the challenge.”
Latin (LCC)s have been slower, for example, to launch cross-border flights. The grounding of Mexicana (CMA) spurred Mexico’s (LCC)s to fill its vacuum. Volaris (VLS) and VivaAerobus (VVS) have focused solely on domestic and USA markets, but Interjet (AAE) now flies to Cuba, Guatemala, Costa Rica, and Colombia, as well as the USA. Viva Colombia (VVC) is starting its own cross-border expansion early. It has applied for permission to fly to Panama City, Mexico City, and Cancun, and hopes to launch these routes in 2014. “International expansion has always been part of our business plan,” says (VVC)’s Posada. He foresees “more interconnected” routes within four-hours of its hub. Cross-border networks are essential in much of Latin America because the domestic markets in many countries are simply too small.
Cross-border networks are one thing, but joint ventures (JV)s are another. Here, again, Latin (LCC)s trail. Latin legacy airlines such as (LAN) pioneered the concept of cross-border joint ventures (JV)s. Clearly, cross-border joint ventures (JV)s between Latin (LCC)s still have a long ways to go.
For now, the news is more about new (LCC)s. Three independent start-ups have announced plans to launch low-cost flights from their bases in San Salvador and Costa Rica. All hope to fly by early next year. Whether they will, remains to be seen, but it shows that they realize the potential for growth in Latin America’s low-cost sector.
December 2013: Viva Colombia ((IATA) Code: 5Z, based at Medellín José Maria Córdova) (VVC) has confirmed plans to establish a 2nd base out of Bogotá in 2014. In a statement issued via social media, the low cost carrier (LCC) said its initial Bogota operations would include services to Pereira, Monteria, Santa Marta, Bucaramanga, San Andrés, and Cúcuta. It will also operate 2 of its 1st 3 international services out of Bogota to Panamá City Tocumen International and Lima. Medellín José Maria Córdova, (VVC)'s primary hub, will see service to Panama City. No specific dates for the launch of these new routes was given. Viva Colombia (VVC) already operates between Medellín and Bogotá and also serves the capital from Cali and Cartagena de Indias.
Viva Colombia (VVC) currently operates 5 airplanes to 1 country, 9 destinations on 13 routes and 28 daily flights.
August 2014: Viva Colombia (VVC), which was created by serial low-cost carrier (LCC) developers Irelandia in 2012, the team behind VivaAerobus (VVA), Tigerair (TGR) and Allegiant Air (WJE), and the original people behind a European concern known as Ryanair (RYR), is now entering the 3rd year of operations and now boasts a network of around 20 city pairs. A significant milestone was achieved by (VVC), which is the 61st biggest (LCC) in the world (according to Flightglobal statistics) based on passengers carried, as it started its 1st ever international services.
SEE ATTACHED CHART - - "VVC-TOP 12 DESTINATIONS." A year ago, Viva Colombia (VVC) featured just 9 destinations across its network, all of which were domestic points. This August, its network coverage has expanded to 12, with the addition of 3 new cities, Panama City/Balboa in Panama (in light green), as well as the new Colombian destinations of Bucaramanga and Cucuta. This increased network coverage has meant that (VVC) now offers +20% more flights when compared to last August. As (VVC) operates a single airplane type across its fleet (6 180Y-seat A320s) the number of seats has also grown by the same amount.
Although originally launched as a Medellin-based airline, (VVC) has undergone a radical shift in its flying program over the last 12 months. Last August, Bogota represented <20% (49 weekly flights) of (VVC)’s weekly flying, however, this summer it has doubled its program from the Colombian capital, now offering >100 weekly flights or over one-third of (VVC)’s operational schedule. By contrast, its former most significant operational base of Medellin has seen its share drop from 38% (96x-weekly flights) to 22% (68x-weekly). The cuts coming from the Network Planning department are actually in terms of frequency, rather than a destination cull, as despite these cuts to flights, Viva Colombia (VVC) has actually increased the number of points it serves from Medellin up to 8 from 7 this August.
SEE ATTACHED CHART - - "VVC-2014-09 - TOP 11 ROUTES." All of (VVC)’s top 11 routes involve either Medellin or Bogota, in fact its biggest city pair which does not involve either of these bases, is its four times weekly operation between Cartagena and Pereira. A link from Bogota to Lima in Peru has been mooted for later this year.
Viva Colombia (VVC) entered the Panamanian market with 2 new routes to Panama City/Balboa (BLB) on August 1st. With the addition of daily flights from Bogota (BOG) and the launch of 4x-weekly services from Medellin (MDE), both routes to the district located at the Pacific entrance to the Panama Canal will be operated by the Colombian low-cost carrier (LCC)’s 180-seat A320s. No other airlines serve any of the new airport pairs.
Air Lease Corporation (ALE) placed 1 A320 airplane at Viva Colombia (VVC) on long-term lease, scheduled for delivery in spring 2015. Originally acquired by (ALE) in May 2011, the A320 is currently on lease to an airline in Asia and is equipped with (CFM56-5B) engines.
A320-214 (1867, HK-4861 "Tec, Mario"), delivery.
December 2014: VivaColombia (VVC), the Colombian low cost carrier (LCC) that has posted +20% traffic growth in 2013, entered the Peruvian market on December 2nd, when it commenced flights from Bogota (BOG) to Lima (LIM). The 1,880 km sector, which is already served by Avianca (AVI)’s 34 weekly operations and (LAN) Airlines’ 3x-daily flights, will be also flown by the Colombian (LCC) with 3x-weekly services, utilizing its 151-seat A320s.
July 2015: VivaColombia (VVC) has been granted a Foreign Air Carrier Permit and Route Exemptions by the USA Department of Transportation (DOT) ahead of its planned entry into the Colombia - USA market later this year. "We grant the request of Fast Colombia S A S d/b/a VivaColombia for an exemption under 49 U S C §40109 to engage in scheduled and charter foreign air transportation of persons, property, and mail from points behind Colombia, via Colombia and intermediate points, to a point or points in the USA and beyond; and other charters pursuant to 14 CFR Part 212 of the Department’s regulations," the (DOT) said.
The (DOT)'s Colombian equivalent, Unidad Administrativa Especial de Aeronáutica Civil (Aerocivil), last year allocated VivaColombia (VVC) traffic rights for flights from Bogota to Miami, Fort Lauderdale International, and West Palm Beach International, as well as from Medellin to Miami and West Palm Beach.
(VVC) has already announced plans to offer daily flights from Bogotá and Medellín José Maria Córdova to Miami International later this year.
VivaColombia (VVC) currently operates 8 airplanes, to 4 countries, 14 destinations, on 22 routes and 58 daily flights.
September 2015: VivaLatinamerica, the holding company that operates Mexico’s VivaAerobus (VVS) and Colombia’s VivaColombia (VVC), is on track to launch a 3rd airline next year.
December 2015: VivaColombia (VVC) commenced services between Bogota (BOG) and Miami (MIA) on December 16. The 2,432 km sector will be operated 4x-weekly, with (VVC) operating the city pair with its A320s. The route will face direct competition from 3 airlines, namely American Airlines (AAL), Avianca (AVI), and (LAN) Airlines.
January 2016: (GE) Capital Aviation Services (GECAS) (GEF) delivered a leased Airbus A320 to low-cost carrier (LCC) VivaColombia (VVC).
August 2016: A320-214 (1657, HK-5191), corrects registration to Celestial Aviation Trading 42.
May 2017: A320-214 (1578, HK-5164) leased to Viva Air Peru.
August 2017: Latin American low cost carrier (LCC) group Viva (QUD) is considering the launch of new affiliates after placing an order for 50 A320 family aircraft. The 15 A320ceos and 35 A320neos will be used to expand in Colombia and Peru, as well as to support potential start-ups throughout Latin America.
The Viva Air Group has expanded much more slowly than initially anticipated since launching VivaColombia (VVC) in 2012. (VVC) has shrunk its international network to only 4 routes, and has also been consolidating its domestic operation, suspending several routes in 2017.
However, VivaColombia (VVC) is still expanding by adding frequencies to existing routes. The group also launched a Peruvian affiliate in May 2017, providing the 1st (LCC) option in Peru’s domestic market.