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Old November 29th, 2009, 12:01 PM   #1861
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MAS Success In Raising US$126 Million Named 'Aircraft Leasing Deal Of The Year'
November 29, 2009 14:49 PM

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 29 (Bernama) -- Malaysia Airlines success in securing finances worth US$126 million under the Japanese Operating Lease for seven ATR72-500s aircraft was named "Aircraft Leasing Deal of the Year - Asia" by Jane Transport Finance.

Working with BNP Paribas Corporate and Investment Banking ("BNP Paribas"), the JOL transactions were closed at a time when the global financial markets were in a crisis.

The success in securing the financing was especially significant in light of a very quiet Japanese equity market.

"Our success in securing seven Japanese Operating Lease (JOL) since September 2008 in this difficult economic environment coupled with the thin equity market in Japan is a recognition of the strength and depth of our relationship and excellent reputation in the Japanese market.

"This shows the confidence that the financiers have in our healthy financial position and our prospect for growth," said Malaysia Airlines Chief Financial Officer, Mohd Azha Abdul Jalil in a statement on Sunday.

He added, "This is an excellent start to our financing exercise as we will require more financing for our fleet replacement programme."

In addition to the ATRs, Malaysia Airlines has ordered 35 B737-800 with delivery commencing end of 2010.

BNP Paribas' Global Head of Transportation Finance, Eric Eugene, said: "We are delighted that the financing has been granted this award. The financing structured as a JOL found very strong interest in the Japanese market despite the period of financial instability during which it was closed."

"It is also remarkable insofar as it was the first time that MAS was returning in the aircraft financing market in many years. It is quite unusual for ATR aircraft to be financed through the JOL market and this was made possible thanks to the excellent recognition of MAS in the Japanese equity market," he said.

JOL is an unique aircraft financing structure whereby the financier takes the form of a special purpose vehicle ("SPV"), which acquires title of the aircraft, and leases the same to Malaysia Airlines on operating lease terms.

The SPV will obtain its equity through syndication of diversified sources from the Japanese equity market, to part finance the aircraft costs and the balance will be funded by loan provided by BNP Paribas and Credit Industriel et Commercial.

The JOL has a call option embedded and upon exercising such call option, the ownership of the aircraft will be transferred to MAS.

Jane's is a brand of IHS (Global) Limited which is wholly owned by IHS, Inc. The business operates as an impartial services provider, independent from government or commercial interests.

Jane's Transport Finance Awards are hosted by Jane's and are established to recognise the immense effort and skill of financiers, bankers and lawyers working within the transport finance industry.

Awards are given in the aircraft, airport, rail, road and shipping sectors. Winners are judged on a specific deal which demonstrates that their finance house or bank has shown particular innovation and skill in securing finance for transportation assets.

The awards are judged by a panel of leading experts and Jane's Transport Finance editorial team. The Awards continue to recognise the immense effort, skill - and risk sometimes - which goes into structuring the shape of the global transport industry of tomorrow.

-- BERNAMA
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Old December 2nd, 2009, 07:18 AM   #1862
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MAS unit plans venture with Pratt&Whitney
Published: 2009/12/02
RELATED LINK: http://www.pw.utc.com/Home

MAS Aerospace Engineering Sdn Bhd, a unit of Malaysian Airline System Bhd, signed a preliminary agreement to form a technology joint venture with Pratt & Whitney.

MAS Aerospace also signed an agreement with KRAUSS GmbH Aviation Technologies aimed at providing parts repair for engines, landing gears and airframe, it said in an e-mailed statement today. -- Bloomberg
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Old December 2nd, 2009, 07:56 AM   #1863
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MAS to start mobile phone bookings, check-ins
Wednesday December 2, 2009 By B.K. SIDHU

The new service an alternative option for cell phone users

PETALING JAYA: From next week, travellers on Malaysia Airlines (MAS) can book air tickets and check in using their mobile devices.

The airline has in place a new IT platform that allows mobile users to buy tickets, check in for flights, view timetables, track baggages and even get a mobile boarding pass.

This is the trend globally where airlines are moving away from over-dependence on travel agents and, at the same time, taking advantage of information technology to reach out to the travellers directly.

Online bookings have been available for a long time and now, with over 90% of travellers carrying handphones, the mobile platform is yet another alternative to book flights and check in.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) had earlier said that this would also eventually eliminate long queues at airports and, if all airlines moved towards electronic boarding passes, that would save the industry US$500mil annually.

Several global airlines, including AirAsia, Turkish Airlines, Finnair, Southwest Airlines and Ryanair, offer this service for the convenience of their travellers.

MAS had earlier said that it would ensure that its service was more comprehensive compared with what is offered in the market place.

The service was soft launched on Sunday. The commercial roll-out is expected early next week.

Mobile phone users need to log on to http://flyMAS.mobi to access the Web-based platform.

MAS on Sunday sent out an SMS inviting mobile users to book via their mobile devices. A check by StarBiz revealed that getting connected was easy and the process was not very complicated. The airline, however, has yet to come up with detail information of the service.

The webpage, which provides contact numbers of all MAS offices, also has a “deals and offers” section with a list of special fares for certain destinations. On offer currently are fares to several Asean cities.

The move to offer mobile booking and check-in is part of an ongoing effort by the airline to upgrade its passenger service system. It is investing RM480mil over a 10-year period, beginning in 2006, for that and has engaged aviation IT specialist SITA for assistance.
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Old December 2nd, 2009, 10:57 AM   #1864
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MAS Aerospace Engineering seals MoUs for future technology
Published: Wednesday December 2, 2009 MYT 2:21:00 PM

LANGKAWI: MAS Aerospace Engineering Sdn Bhd (MAE)has signed memoranda of understanding (MoUs) with Pratt & Whitney (PW) and KRAUSS GmbH Aviation Technologies, to help the company to place itself at the forefront of new aircraft technology.

MAE is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Malaysia Airlines.

The MoU with PW will see both parties exploring the possibility of setting up a joint venture company for nacelle and composite repair and overhaul.

Meanwhile, the MoU with KRAUSS is aimed at providing parts repair for engines, landing gears and airframes.

Commenting on the MoU with PW here today, Malaysia Airlines general manager for engineering and maintenance - KLIA, Rashidi Saidin said the company hopes to set up the joint venture entity within six months.

"As aircraft technology evolves, we are constantly exploring strategic partnerships to ensure MAE is at the forefront of new technology.

"These collaborations will make us highly competitive.Not only will we have the technological expertise but be more cost competitive compared to many maintenance, repair and overhauls (MROs)," he added.

The signing ceremony was held at the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition 2009 (LIMA 2009) here and was witnessed by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

At the same event, Malaysia Airlines managing director/chief executive officer, Tengku Datuk Azmil Zahruddin presented letters of employment and staff identification tags to three Malaysia Airlines Engineering Training Centre (METC) Felda scheme trainees.

The trio represent the first group of 69 Felda trainess who will be absorbed into MAS' workforce. - Bernama
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Old December 2nd, 2009, 08:15 PM   #1865
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AirAsia ups KL-HK flight frequency
Published: 2009/12/03

BUDGET carrier AirAsia Bhd will increase its Kuala Lumpur-Hong Kong flights to three times a day, from two, effective January 21 next year.

In a statement issued yesterday, AirAsia said the route , sees an average load factor of 75 per cent.

In conjunction with the increased frequency, it is offering promotional all-in fares from RM129 (HK$398) one-way on the sector.

Bookings can be made from today to Monday for travel from January 21 to October 30 next year.
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Old December 7th, 2009, 05:42 PM   #1866
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AirAsia Plans To Fly To Seoul And Sydney By Middle Of Next Year
December 07, 2009 19:08 PM

SEPANG, Dec 7 (Bernama) -- AirAsia is in the midst of securing rights to land in Seoul and Sidney by the middle of next year.

The budget airline is also spreading its wings in India to 12 new routes in 2010, said its group chief executive officer Datuk Seri Tony Fernandes.

He said AirAsia received tremendous response from the South Korean's Government, and it is in the process of obtaining approval for flight to Seoul.

"South Korea is the new country and they are very excited about it. As for India, it has been a very successful destination so far and we are looking into 12 new routes including Hyderabad, Bangalore, Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai," he told reporters after celebrating AirAsia's eighth anniversary here Monday.

Todate, the budget airline flies to four destinations in India, Trichy, Trivandrum, Kolkata and Kochin, while its current destinations in Australia are Gold Coast, Perth and Melbourne.

Tony said Thailand and Indonesia will also be two strong countries for AirAsia next year.

Commenting on the airline's outlook next year, he said AirAsia was confident it will be an "amazing year".

"For the past three quarters, we have recorded profit amid the sluggish economic environment, and the fourth quarter looks very strong," he said.

-- BERNAMA
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Old December 8th, 2009, 07:16 AM   #1867
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RM8 flights as AirAsia celebrates eighth anniversary
Tuesday December 8, 2009



Happy Birthday: Fernandes cutting a cake with AirAsia chairman Datuk Aziz
Bakar and deputy group CEO Datuk Kamarudin Meranun at the company’s
anniversary celebration at the LCCT concourse, Sepang, Monday.
Celebrating with them is Datuk Nicol David (left) .


SEPANG: AirAsia is offering all-in fares starting from as low as RM8 for domestic flights and from RM25 for international flights in conjunction with its eighth year anniversary celebrations and achievements.

The special fares are for flights to destinations including Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Bangkok, Jakarta, Bali, Phuket, Taipei, Hanoi, Trichy, Abu Dhabi, Macau, Hong Kong and others.

To enjoy the promotions, customers must book seats online from Dec 8 to Dec 18 and fly between July 5 and Oct 30 next year.

Guests may also book tour packages and make hotel bookings on goholiday.airasia.com.

Airline CEO Datuk Tony Fernandes also announced that AirAsia would be introducing Sydney and Seoul as its new routes in mid-2010 through the AirAsia X package, followed by 12 new routes in India.

On another matter, Fernandes said the airline’s website airasia.com had attracted 20 million unique visitors per month with its blogsite blog.airasia.com, ranking it as the world’s second most popular blog site by an airline.

“Tapping into the new media and social networking sites has given an advantage to AirAsia to keep its customers informed of the latest promotions and other updates.”

Announcing the recent success at its eighth year anniversary celebration here yesterday, he said: “AirAsia has attracted a large following using the Internet including those from places we don’t fly to yet, like the United States.”

The airline information dissemination system included updates in Twitter, Flickr and Facebook.

AirAsia’s facebook at facebook.airasia.com has a fan base of some 100,000 since it was launched nine months ago.

NOTE: 1 USD = 3.3 MYR
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Old December 8th, 2009, 07:51 AM   #1868
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MAS’ digital strategy paying off
Written by Emily Tan Tuesday, 08 December 2009 11:35
http://www.theedgemalaysia.com/media...aying-off.html

MALAYSIA Airlines (MAS), which has been actively developing its presence in the digital sphere since last year, is beginning to see its efforts pay off.

The airline launched its employee blog, Living Malaysian Hospitality (LMH), last year which captures and shares employees’ stories. It is also present on Twitter and has several Facebook fanpages. Its website malaysiaairlines.com was ranked eighth on comScore’s list of most visited Malaysian websites in June this year.

The airline’s online search campaign by media services agency Mindshare won a gold award at the Asia-Pacific Digital Media Awards 2009 organised by Media magazine on Nov 16 in Shanghai, China. Malaysia Airlines and public relations agency Fleishman-Hillard also won the Best Use of Digital award at the Malaysian PR Awards 2009 on Dec 2, awarded by the Public Relations Consultants Association of Malaysia. The social media campaign won for its success at integrating digital elements and connection with its online target audience.

The online search campaign was developed in response to the increasing reliance that travel consumers place on online research, turning to search engines like Google and Yahoo to help them make decisions, said Mindshare search regional director, Sanchit Sanga in a Nov 24 statement. To ensure the campaign would appeal to consumers, the agency conducted an in-depth consumer travel insight study, said Sanchit.

The results of the global campaign across 25 markets and in 10 languages were “remarkable”, said Indira Nair, MAS senior general manager of communications. “The number of tickets sold through search soared 450% (compared with before the campaign’s launch in January). Earnings per booking grew 200%. Time spent on website from search traffic went up 150%.
“On these metrics, we were consistently higher than the market average and ahead of competition in Malaysia and the region,” she said in a Nov 23 statement by MAS.

Besides the search campaign, the airline also worked on improving its website, www.malaysiaairlines.com, creating a more user-friendly environment by improving the speed and enhancing the payment gateway. This resulted in an average increase of 40% in monthly visitors since last year and Internet sales have grown from 30,000 last year to about 150,000 bookings per month today, according to a statement. Its efforts were recognised last month by the User Experience Alliance, a global network of leading user research firms, which placed the site at no 10 in the inaugural Global Local Monitor league table. The rankings are based on an assessment of a site’s efficiency and degree of localisation.

MAS has also been using social media successfully to reach out to 23- to 30-year-olds. “In just eight months, we have some 22,000 fans on our Facebook page, Malaysia Airlines Travel. And we have more than 6,000 followers on Twitter. We also have MH Expats and MH Students fanpages on Facebook,” said Indira in a Dec 3 statement.

In an email interview with The Edge for the Malaysia’s Most Valuable Brands 2009 special focus last month, MAS CEO and managing director Tengku Datuk Azmil Zahruddin said the social media approach is aimed at building awareness, and “not for a hard sell”.

“We focus on making two-way conversation and this is evident in the comments and responses which are posted on our fan pages. We are getting into their basket of consideration for travel,” he said.

“By using a combination of influence and relationship-building conversations, we use the social media as a platform for communicating and interacting, and integrate these with a relevant mix of offline activities and events. This encourages consumers to consider the ‘value’ proposition, rather than impulse purchasing based solely on price,” said Indira.

According to the airline, it will accelerate its digital presence next year by focusing on driving online sales.

This article appeared on the Media & Marketing page, The Edge Financial Daily, Dec 8, 2009.
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Old December 8th, 2009, 09:01 AM   #1869
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Air Asia Eyes The US Market
December 08, 2009 12:09 PM
By Manik Mehta

NEW YORK, Dec 8 (Bernama)- Malaysia and Asia's best-known low-cost carrier, Air Asia, has set its sights on the United States market.

Aviation experts here say that Air Asia could easily fill the vacuum left by the national carrier, Malaysia Airlines (MAS), which recently discontinued flights to the east coast and closed its office in the Big Apple.

MAS however, still maintains its operations on the west coast, with flights to Los Angeles.

Datuk Tony Fernandes, Air Asia's chief executive, told Bernama in an interview in New York recently - he was a member of the entourage accompanying the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak to the city - that he was "working" towards establishing a regular service to the east coast.

"We are very keen to enter the US market which has good business potential," he disclosed.

He hoped to start flights to an east coast airport, either New York or New Jersey, in 2010.

Ever since MAS stopped its service to the east coast, Malaysia lost an important connectivity with that part of the world.

"There are many foreign national carriers, which despite losses, maintain operations to this part of the world which is an important international service point.

"It is that proverbial pennywise-pound-foolish decision, that is likely to haunt MAS, because by withdrawing it will find it extremely difficult to come back and re-establish its position," said a New York based aviation expert who wished to remain anonymous.

Although Air Asia is a low-cost, "no frills" carrier, its arrival here would provide relief to travellers particularly Malaysians, who endure a great deal of inconvenience flying to back home via a third country.

Tony also discussed plans for the acquisition of new aircraft.

"Over the next 24 months, we will be having 32 aircraft of the A-320 type, most of which is to be used for India and China.We have 120 routes which will be increased.

"Air Asia Express will have six aircraft of the A-330 type, mainly for Sydney, Jeddah, Seoul and cities in India," he explained.

According to Tony, the airline also plans to start services to San Francisco, Los Angeles and Hawaii.

However, things need to be sorted out first, at the government-to-government level.

The New York service will be an extension of Air Asia's service from London's Stansead airport.

Tony described the US market as "very good". "There are many students here.

"I am confident, many Americans will also use Air Asia to visit Asia and Europe. They can also get connectivity to Australia," he said.

Asked whether the smaller seat configuration on Air Asia's aircraft, which is fine for passengers on shorter routes, would be suitable for long-haul flights, he said: "The airline plans to change and improve the seating configuration for the long-haul sectors."

On Air Asia's cargo business, though negligible and not fully tapped yet - it accounts for less than one percent of the airline's business - he said that it would further grow in future.

"We are also preparing for that," he said.

Air Asia's total fleet of aircraft, including Thai AirAsia, AirAsia X and Indonesia AirAsia, comprises 85 aircraft, the majority of which are of the A320-200 type.

The fleet also includes some B737-300, A330-300, A340-300 and A350-900 aircraft.

-- BERNAMA
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Old December 9th, 2009, 08:34 AM   #1870
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Experts AirAsia can easily fly to New York
Wednesday December 9, 2009

NEW YORK: AirAsia has set its sights on the US market.

Aviation experts here said AirAsia could easily fill the vacuum left by national carrier Malaysia Airlines (MAS), which recently discontinued flights to the east coast and closed its office in the Big Apple.

MAS however, still maintains its operations on the west coast, with flights to Los Angeles.

Datuk Seri Tony Fernandes, AirAsia chief executive, told Bernama here recently that he was ”working” towards establishing a regular service to the east coast.

“We are very keen to enter the US market which has good business potential,” he said adding that he hoped to start flights to an east coast airport, either New York or New Jersey, in 2010.

Since MAS stopped its service to the east coast, Malaysia lost an important connectivity with that part of the world.

“There are many foreign national carriers, which despite losses, maintain operations to this important international service point. “It is that proverbial pennywise-pound-foolish decision that is likely to haunt MAS because by withdrawing it will find it extremely difficult to come back and re-establish its position,” said a New York-based aviation expert who wished to remain anonymous.

Fernandes also discussed plans for the acquisition of new aircraft.

“Over the next 24 months, we will be having 32 aircraft of the A-320 type, most of which is to be used for India and China. We have 120 routes which will be increased. Air Asia X will have six aircraft of the A-330 type, mainly for Sydney, Jeddah, Seoul and cities in India,” he said.

According to Fernandes, the airline also plans to start services to San Francisco, Los Angeles and Hawaii.However, things need to be sorted out first at the government-to-government level. The New York service will be an extension of AirAsia’s service from London’s Stansted airport.

Fernandes described the US market as “very good”. “There are many students here. I am confident many Americans will also use AirAsia to visit Asia and Europe. They can also get connectivity to Australia,” he said.

He said the airline also planned to change and improve the seating configuration for the long-haul sectors.— Bernama
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Old December 9th, 2009, 11:43 AM   #1871
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MAS sees RM2b benefit from Passenger Services System
9th December, 2009

PETALING JAYA: Malaysia Airlines (MAS) expects RM2 billion worth of benefits in terms of both cost saving and revenue growth over a 10-year period with a new Passenger Services System (PSS), a component of which was launched yesterday.

“With over RM480 million invested on the integrated platform over 10 years, MAS customers can enjoy seamless service delivery and a suit of new services,” managing director and chief executive officer Tengku Datuk Azmil Zahruddin said.

The PSS component, MHMobile-flymas.mobi, is the world’s most comprehensive mobile booking system.

Developed together with SITA Lab, it offers more choices and convenience for the airline’s 14 million passengers, allowing them to book, pay, check in and board flight using mobile phone.

It is also the first mobile airline application that connects bookings to Facebook, Triplt and Doppir, enabling friends and colleagues to be informed about each other’s travel plans.
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Old December 10th, 2009, 01:11 PM   #1872
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AirAsia wins brand of the year award
Published: 2009/12/10

BUDGET Airline, AirAsia Bhd, won the Brand of the Year Award at the Media Agency of the Year (AOY) Award in Singapore yesterday.

The airline said the AOY award recognised inspired brand leadership, management excellence, outstanding business performance and overall achievements in the Asia-Pacific advertising and communications industry.

It was awarded the honour for its constant innovations and bold ideas in branding campaigns and advertisements to achieve marketing success, the low-cost carrier said in a statement.

Despite the global economic downturn, AirAsia continued to embark on numerous branding campaigns which not only became the industry's benchmark, but also led the way to demonstrate aggressive branding efforts essential to keep the brand relevant, alive and fresh especially during challenging times.

" As a young airline, we are elated with this win as it is an important recognition to our tireless efforts in bringing the AirAsia brand to the forefront," said AirAsia Regional Commercial Head Kathleen Tan.

Tan said the airline was committed to build its brand and bring it to greater heights.

Media Editor-in-chief and AOY Jury Chair, Atifa Hargrave-Silk, said AirAsia was given the award for its achievement in building its brand and expanding international profile in a year at a time when the economic downturn crippled demand for air travel. - Bernama
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Old December 10th, 2009, 05:42 PM   #1873
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image hosted on flickr
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Old December 11th, 2009, 08:26 AM   #1874
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MAS bags best maintenance award
Published: 2009/12/11

Malaysia Airlines Engineering & Maintenance (E&M) Division has been awarded the 2009 Best Asia-Pacific Airline MRO (Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul) Operation Award by Aviation Week and Overhaul & Maintenance, two of the industry's leading magazines.

The MRO Asia Awards programme is intended to honour companies operating in the Asia-Pacific region for excellence in aviation and aerospace aftermarket operations.

This is the second award won this year, attesting to MAS E&M's creditable reputation in the marketplace. Earlier this year, MAS E&M was selected as the 2009 Asia-Pacific Airframe MRO of The Year by Frost & Sullivan, Singapore.

Malaysia Airlines senior general manager (E&M) Mohd Roslan Ismail said: “We are delighted to receive this award which is testament to the team's focus on quality, safety and timely deliverables."

"Our customers are important to us and we are turning ourselves into a one-stop shop MRO that will meet their needs. With six Hangars offering 24 maintenance bays that can accommodate even A380 aircraft, we are able to offer maintenance service support for all aircraft type and size," he said in a statement today.

MAS E&M is transforming into a subsidiary, Malaysian Aerospace Engineering Sdn Bhd, in 2010.

Mohd Roslan said the company's vision is to be the preferred global MRO.

"To achieve this, we are developing new capabilities and diversifying our portfolio. We are also exploring strategic partnerships," he added.

To be at the forefront of new technologies, MAS E&M sealed two memoranda of understanding, one with Pratt & Whitney, USA, and the other, with KRAUSS GmbH Aviation Technologies, Germany, at the recent LIMA 2009.

It has also set up a JV MRO company with GMR Hyderabad International Airport Ltd in Hyderabad, India. Other partnerships include a JV company for the provision of MRO services for turboprop commercial aircraft with Alenia Aeronautica of Italy. -- BERNAMA
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Old December 18th, 2009, 10:53 AM   #1875
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Jetstar in joint venture talks with AirAsia
Published: 2009/12/18

SYDNEY: Australia’s national airline Qantas today said its budget offshoot Jetstar was in talks with Malaysia’s AirAsia about a possible joint venture aimed at reducing costs.

“Qantas confirms that its wholly-owned subsidiary Jetstar and AirAsia have entered discussions regarding a potential cost-saving joint venture,” the company said in a statement to the market.

“However, these discussions are at a preliminary stage and no binding agreements have been reached.” A spokesman for Jetstar said the venture was aimed at savings on the ground, and the airlines would still compete for passengers.

“It could be along the lines of non-competing areas of aviation that could deliver significant cost savings,” the spokesman told AFP.

“An example could be some ground handling opportunities, an example could be some procurement opportunities.” Despite coming just days after Australia announced it would relax some foreign ownership rules for Qantas, the venture would not affect either airline’s ownership, he added.

“These discussions have been had in complete isolation to what’s come out in recent days,” the spokesman said.

“The crux of this is about cost and pursuit of economies of scale amongst the Asian region’s two largest low-cost carrier groups.”

Kuala Lumpur-based AirAsia is the Asia-Pacific region’s largest budget carrier, operating more than 400 daily flights to 60 destinations.

Jetstar operates almost 2,000 weekly flights to more than 50 destinations in Australia and the Asia-Pacific.

Australia on Wednesday unveiled a blueprint for its aviation industry for the next two decades which eases some restrictions on foreign ownership of Qantas while leaving the ’Flying Kangaroo’ majority Australian owned. - AFP
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Old December 22nd, 2009, 06:50 AM   #1876
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MAS pondering RM1b rights issue
Published: 2009/12/22

Malaysian Airline System Bhd (MAS) (3786), the national carrier, is considering raising at least RM1 billion in a rights offering of shares, two people familiar with the proposal said.

The airline's board and government have yet to give approval for the plan, the people said, declining to be identified as the discussions are private.

"We are considering all options to fund our purchase of planes, including debt and equity-based financing such as a rights issue and share sale," the airline said in an e-mailed statement. - Bloomberg
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Old December 22nd, 2009, 08:44 AM   #1877
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MAS eyes a greener future
Written by The Edge Financial Daily Monday, 21 December 2009 23:31
http://www.theedgemalaysia.com/busin...er-future.html

KUALA LUMPUR: MALAYSIAN AIRLINE SYSTEM BHD [] (MAS) has several strategies lined up to reduce carbon emissions by the airline, which will include an internal programme to integrate, reduce, reuse and recycle waste management practices, its managing director and CEO Tengku Datuk Azmil Zahruddin said.

“We are also among the few airlines in Asia that have carbon offset programme where passengers volunteer, while buying their flight ticket, we calculate how much carbon and how much they can contribute and the funds are going to programmes that have been endorsed by the government together with UNDP (United Nations Development Programme),” he said in a recent interview with Air Transport News.

Azmil also said its refleeting programme, which “costs a lot of money”, would also reduce carbon emissions. He said although discussions on the environment in Asia were fewer compared to Europe and the US, MAS had to “start somewhere”.

“We do not want to wait before we do it, so we do it, we publicise it, we make people aware that everything is there and I think over time we will improve,” added Azmil.

It is understood that 2% of the world’s carbon emissions of greenhouse gases are contributed by the aviation industry. Since 2005, MAS has embarked on green programmes such as energy conservation, pursuing and obtaining ISO14001 certifications for environmental management systems.
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Old December 22nd, 2009, 05:39 PM   #1878
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MAS u-turns to buy, not lease A380s from PMB
Tuesday December 22 2009
By Syed Jaymal Zahiid
http://themalaysianinsider.com/index...380s-from-pmb-

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 22 — In a major U-turn, Malaysia Airlines (MAS) will take over the purchase of six undelivered Airbus A380s from state-owned Penerbangan Malaysia (PMB) for RM 1.54 billion to save on leasing premiums and flexibility to manage its assets.

The flag carrier plans to also bundle four Boeings for a total of RM3.19 billion from PMB, which was set up under a November 2002 Wide Asset Unbundling (WAU) to take all assets from the debt-ridden airline.

Malaysia’s sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional Berhad owns 100 per cent of PMB, and a majority stake in MAS while its managing director Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar was behind the WAU.

MAS, which signed a deal to buy 15 Airbus A330s and 10 options today, plans to partly pay for its acquisitions through a rights issue to raise at least RM2.7 billion by first quarter 2010.

The proposed acquisitions are said to add RM648 million to MAS’s profit and liability over a period of three years primarily from owning the aircraft as opposed to lease deal.

MAS chief executive officer and managing director Tengku Datuk Azmil Zahruddin told a press conference here that owning an aircraft would give a lower lifetime cost than leasing.

“While leasing ensures that we have flexibility with our fleet, we pay premium for this... with this, we have the option either owning the aircraft or doing a sales and leaseback depending on our requirements,” he said.

MAS will pay PMB some RM1.54 billion in cash for novation of the purchase of the A380s. PMB has issued bonds for its purchases and is expected to use the cash to repay bondholders. It sold the MAS headquarters which is now expected to be turned into a hotel and serviced apartment block in Kuala Lumpur’s Golden Triangle business district.

The carrier is expected to receive one A380 every month beginning August 2011 and delivery is expected to be completed by Jan 2012 after a delay of several years.

The A380s, the biggest among the Airbuses, will be deployed to high-density routes such as London, Amsterdam and Sydney as the aircraft would allow them to carry 35 per cent more passengers.

The A330 wide-bodied planes are due to be delivered between 2011 and 2016. MAS already owns six.

As for the bundling of the four Boeing aircraft from PMB, the state airline is planning to make an upfront payment of RM190 million for it and the aircraft will be sold upon them being unencumbered.

The payment is a form of prepayment for the operating lease rentals under the existing lease agreements between PMB and MAS.

MAS has also recently secured US$126 million (RM426 million) under the Japanese Operating Lease (JOL) for seven ATR72-500s aircraft for its Firefly community airline service.

The deal was was named “Aircraft Leasing Deal of the Year - Asia” by Jane Transport Finance for 2009.
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Old December 22nd, 2009, 05:39 PM   #1879
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MAS To Purchase Up To 25 New A330 Aircraft
December 22, 2009 20:53 PM
http://www.bernama.com/bernama/v5/ne....php?id=463990

PETALING JAYA, Dec 22 (Bernama) -- Malaysia Airlines is purchasing up to 25 A330-300 aircraft worth US$5 billion in order to serve the growing markets of South Asia, China, North Asia, Australia and Middle East.

"The A330 will complement our incoming fleet of six A380 and 35 B737-800," its managing director/chief executive officer Tengku Datuk Azmil Zahruddin told reporters following the signing of a memorandum of understanding between MAS and Airbus here Tuesday.

Under the deal, MAS is to acquire 15 A330-300 aircraft with options for a further 10.

The aircraft will be delivered from 2011 to 2016.

"The new fleet will create a strong platform for us to profitably grow. The A380 will serve key long haul destinations such as London and Sydney, the A330 for medium haul markets while the B737-800 will be used to strengthen our domestic and regional routes," Azmil said.

Azmil said the national carrier expected to gain annual savings of RM300 million when the first 15 A330 aircraft are received.

"By 2016, all the aircraft we have ordered will be in and we expect to have one of the youngest, most fuel efficient and environmentally friendly fleet in Asia," Azmil said.

He said MAS's strategy was to transform from having a 100 per cent leased fleet to owning at least a third of the aircraft in its core fleet.

On the delay of Airbus A380 super-jumbo planes, Azmil said the delay was due to production issue, adding that the total compensation including the additional delay to August will be in excess of RM330 million.

The A380 planes which are supposed to arrive in January 2011, are now slated to start arriving in August 2011.

On its prospects next year, Azmil said the national carrier expected a fairly modest growth, adding that it was looking at additional potential routes in India, China and the Middle East.

Meanwhile, Airbus senior vice president (sales) Thomas Friedberger said MAS will benefit from the more fuel-efficient aircraft with lower operating costs.

"Airbus has never stopped innovating and improving on the A330 family by integrating the experiences and knowledge that we have gained through other Airbus programme," he said.

-- BERNAMA
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Old December 22nd, 2009, 07:04 PM   #1880
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MAS to start mobile phone bookings, check-ins
http://flyMAS.mobi

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