Boeing Scraps CEO's Bonus over 777X Delays

Jinen Gada

06 Apr 2023

Boeing, recently made headlines for scrapping CEO David Calhoun's performance bonus for the 777X project. Saying that CEO will not receive a USD 7 million bonus due to the company's failure to enter the 777X into service by the end of 2023.

The 777X is a long-range, wide-body aircraft that was first announced in 2013, with a projected entry into service date of 2020. However, the program has faced several delays, including issues with the plane's engines and the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on the aviation industry. As a result, the plane has yet to enter commercial service.

Calhoun was appointed CEO of Boeing in January 2020, at a time when the company was reeling from the fallout of two fatal crashes of its 737 Max aircraft. Calhoun was tasked with overseeing the company's efforts to regain public trust and restore its reputation. As part of his compensation package, Calhoun was eligible for a bonus tied to the 777X program's performance. However, in February 2021, Boeing's board of directors announced that they had decided to withhold the bonus due to the program's continued delays.

Boeing's board of directors said Calhoun "substantially achieved, or is on track to substantially achieve" most of the award's performance goals, which include the return to service of the 737 MAX in 2020. The board also praised Calhoun's leadership in the filing, saying the CEO made several decisions on the 777X program that were in the company's long-term interests but came at the expense of the goal being met.

Boeing's actions demonstrate that it takes its responsibilities as a leading aerospace company seriously. The company's leadership understands that its decisions and actions have a significant impact on the aviation industry and the millions of people who rely on it every day. The decision to withhold Calhoun's bonus is not the first time that Boeing has taken steps to hold its leadership accountable. Moving forward, Boeing will need to continue to focus on meeting its commitments to customers and shareholders while also addressing the challenges it faces in the aviation industry.

Boeing's decision to withhold CEO David Calhoun's bonus for the 777X program's performance reflects the company's commitment to holding its leadership accountable for delivering results. This decision sends a clear message that Boeing is serious about meeting its commitments to customers and shareholders and that it takes its responsibilities as a leading aerospace company seriously. As the company moves forward, it will need to continue to focus on meeting its commitments and addressing the challenges it faces in the aviation industry.

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AURELIUS to acquire LSG Group from Lufthansa

Abhishek Nayar

06 Apr 2023

Deutsche Lufthansa AG (Lufthansa) has agreed to sell the remaining LSG Group business to private equity firm AURELIUS. The European LSG Sky Chefs activities were previously sold to GateGroup in 2019. The divestment of the catering division is part of the Lufthansa Group's future aim to focus more on its aviation operations. The deal is intended to improve Lufthansa Group's operating margin and capital return.

Germany based AURELIUS Group, which specializes in investing in firms that need to enhance their operations, intends to utilize its experience to assist LSG Group in becoming more efficient and lucrative. The investment group has a track record of effectively turning around troubled firms, and it sees tremendous potential in the operations of LSG Group. The firm has a portfolio of more than 100 companies across various industries, including healthcare, chemicals, and technology. AURELIUS Group is known for its hands-on approach to portfolio management, working closely with portfolio companies to help them improve their operations and achieve sustainable growth. The arrangement was announced without the sum being disclosed by either party. Still, the LSG Group (LSG Sky Chefs and Retail InMotion) had a combined revenue of €1.96 billion ($2.15 billion) at the end of fiscal year 2022. The most recent estimates show a 75% increase over 2021 and equal 85% of the company's pre-pandemic revenues in 2019.

The LSG Group, located near Frankfurt, Germany, distributes around 275 million traditional airline catering meals in 49 countries. The transaction includes all of the LSG Group's traditional catering, onboard retail, and food commerce activities and brands, as well as all 131 LSG Sky Chefs Customer Service Centers (CSCs) in the Americas (U.S. and Latin America), Emerging Markets (EMMA), and Asia-Pacific regions, as well as onboard retail expert Retail InMotion (RiM) based in Europe and SCIS Air Security Services based in the United States. It employed 19,000 people worldwide and has 36 partner ventures throughout the world. With the assistance of its new owner, the LSG Group will be able to focus on implementing its ambitious three-pillar plan to harness growth prospects and lead the market in innovation after the transaction is completed.


"We are delighted to have identified the ideal investor for the LSG Group in the future, who also has the full backing of the LSG Group management. We are certain that AURELIUS will position the LSG Group effectively in the next few years. As a result, we will be able to focus even more on increasing the profitability and capital returns of the Lufthansa Group's core business," stated Remco Steenbergen, Chief Financial Officer of Deutsche Lufthansa AG." This purchase solidifies AURELIUS' position as a global industry leader in performing very complicated company carve-outs. Our operational experts will help the LSG Group maintain its market-leading position. AURELIUS will collaborate with the LSG Group's experienced management team to realize the company's development possibilities. We look forward to working closely with the LSG Group team and beginning on an exciting road to becoming an even more successful stand-alone company," says Dr. Dirk Markus, AURELIUS' Founding Partner.

Subject to appropriate external clearances and internal carve-out operations, the acquisition is scheduled to completion in Q3 2023. AURELIUS Group's acquisition of LSG Group is not its first in the aviation business. The investment group previously purchased Servisair, a UK-based in-flight services business, which it eventually sold to Swissport.

Thus, the purchase of LSG Group by AURELIUS Group represents a significant move in the airline catering and in-flight services business. The investment firm's expertise in turning around troubled firms, as well as its prior success in the aviation sector, position it ideally to assist LSG Group in navigating the current problems and emerging stronger. The purchase will provide the LSG Group with more resources and experience to invest in technology and innovation, while also assisting the Lufthansa Group in streamlining its operations and focusing on its core business. The acquisition's entire impact will be obvious in time, but it constitutes a substantial strategic move for both organisations.

With inputs from LufthansagroupLsg-group


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Emirates will Operate the First A380 Route to Bali

Abhishek Nayar

06 Apr 2023

Emirates, one of the world's largest and most luxurious airlines, has announced that it will operate the first A380 route to Bali, a popular tourist destination in Indonesia. This move is expected to significantly boost tourism in the region and provide a more comfortable and convenient travel experience for passengers. Emirates will begin flying the A380 between Dubai and Bali on July 2, 2023, marking the first time the carrier has deployed the superjumbo to the island. This is expected to replace one of the two daily flights now operated by a Boeing 777-300(ER). EK began nonstop flights from Dubai to Bali in 2015, in addition to its services to Jakarta, Indonesia, which had been in operation since 1992.

Thus far, the airline has flown over 49,000 flights and carried over 9 million passengers between Dubai and Indonesia. EK presently serves Indonesia with 28 weekly flights to Bali and Jakarta; the airline provides connectivity to another 29 domestic locations via the two hubs through its partners Garuda Indonesia and Batik Air.


Dubai-Denpasar will have 1,043 available seats daily, which is 22% more than before the change. It isn't any more since the leisure-heavy route is served by its highest-density 777-300ER. There are two classes and 428 seats available. The new two-class Emirates A380 service will replace one of the two daily flights to Bali now operated by a two-class Boeing 777-300ER aircraft. The airline's first A380 flight, EK368 will depart from Dubai International Airport (DXB) at 03:25 hours and arrive at Denpasar International Airport (DPS) at 16:35 hours local time. The return aircraft, EK369, will depart Bali at 19:40 hours and arrive in Dubai at 00:45 hours local time. All timings are in the local time zone. The 03:25 departure from UAE hub corresponds to the carriers' biggest departure bank to the far East.

Dubai to Denpasar: EK368; 03:25-16:35 (9 h 10m); A380

Dubai to Denpasar: EK398; 09:10-22:20 (9 h 10m); 777-300ER

Denpasar to Dubai: EK399; 00:05-05:05 (9 h); 777-300ER

Denpasar to Dubai: EK369; 19:40-00:45+1 (9 h 5m); A380

Adnan Kazim, Emirates' Chief Commercial Officer, highlighted the deployment of the world's largest passenger aircraft to Bali, saying, "The Emirates A380 is synonymous with our fly better promise and world-class products and services, and we're excited to offer our travelers the opportunity to experience its uniqueness and unrivalled beauty on flights to and from Bali. Needless to say, we've been collaborating closely with our colleagues at Bali's Ngurah Rai International Airport to ensure that our A380 operations go well. We'd like to express our gratitude to the authorities and our partners for their assistance.”

“Bali is one of the most popular tourist destinations in our network and in critical Southeast Asian markets, and the Emirates A380's debut in Indonesia demonstrates our long-standing commitment to the country's travel and tourism industry. We look forward to increasing incoming traffic to the island while also providing more chances for leisure and business travelers to connect to Dubai and beyond to destinations throughout Europe and the Americas via Emirates' broad global network."

Passengers on a two-class Emirates A380 aircraft will find 58 lie-flat seats in business class and 557 generously pitched seats in economy class. Passengers flying to and from Bali can expect Emirates' large and comfortable cabins, unique items like the Onboard Lounge that provide passengers with the greatest experiences in the sky, and regional food that includes a variety of Indonesian specialties. Emirates' award-winning in-flight entertainment system, ICE, provides over 5,000 channels of on-demand entertainment, including a large variety of Indonesian content.

Overall, the arrival of the A380 to Bali is a big step forward for both Emirates and the Indonesian tourism industry. The move is anticipated to increase the number of tourists to Bali while also providing travelers with a more sophisticated and pleasant travel experience.

 With inputs from Emirates


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AAI to hire over 80% ATCs to manage increasing air traffic

Radhika Bansal

06 Apr 2023

As Indian aviation reaches record traffic levels, the government has set out to address a shortage of air traffic control officers (ATCOs) by filling 80% of vacant posts in the next six months, according to a report by Mint. The Airports Authority of India is in the process of hiring 356 of the 519 ATCO vacancies by August-September, two officials said.

In most cases, a recruit must undergo mandatory training of about nine months, followed by on-the-job training of 18 to 24 months. Record orders for planes and passenger growth in the Indian market have brought in the sense of urgency in the government to ensure enough controllers to guide the new aircraft.

The AAI has three training institutes -- Civil Aviation Training College (CATC) in Prayagraj; Hyderabad Training Centre (HTC); and the National Institute of Aviation Training And Management (NIATAM), Gondia. The existing combined capacity of the above training institutes is 575 for freshers/new recruits which is sufficient to cater to the requirements of AAI.

"Given the size of aircraft orders that have been placed by Indian airlines and the growth potential, it is expected that the hiring of various key personnel including air traffic controllers will be ramped up over the next two years as they are a critical component for aviation infrastructure. In addition, they will also be needed as the government is planning to expand flight operations at Tier-2,3 cities as well," an official told the Mint.

The report also highlights the shortage of air traffic controllers in India, with 3,692 ATCOs on active duty against the required current strength of 4,211. This means that 519 more personnel are required to keep operations smooth.

Meanwhile, the AAI has asked some retired controllers to come back as consultants until adequately experienced controllers can be placed. In March, the agency issued an advertisement requiring 27 retired ATCOs for a one-year term for 10 airports, but mostly for Delhi (DEL) and Mumbai (BOM).

The DGCA plans to hire 1,000 employees by 2030, increasing the count to 1,600-1,700 from its current strength of nearly 650 people, as it realizes the need to keep up with India's rapidly growing fleet size.

The AAI had also initiated steps for filling up another 356 posts of ATCOs through direct recruitment on December 9, 2022. Further, to cope with the increasing demand, the Ministry of Civil Aviation has initiated the process of creating of 456 more posts of ATCOs in AAI at different levels.

(With Inputs from Mint)

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First Parts of Airbus A350F Begin Construction

Jinen Gada

05 Apr 2023

Airbus has started producing the first structural parts for its new A350F – building the world’s most capable and efficient widebody freighter on time, and well ahead of the competition.

The aircraft is coming to reality in just under 1.5 years after the new freighter was officially unveiled to the industry. It is also further testimony that Airbus is progressing well on its commitment to provide airlines and the cargo industry with a unique choice via this all-new technology widebody freighter.

The first metal cuts for the A350F had just taken place in Nantes with the machining of the first parts for the Centre Wing Box (CWB). These parts include the “vertical cruciform” – the massive fitting that joins the outer-wing boxes to the CWB. 

In terms of the manufacturing and sub-assembly operations at Nantes, 15 working stations out of the 38 at the factory have been adapted to cater to the new freighter variant’s CWB, allowing production to be intermixed flexibly, i.e., together with the CWBs for the A350-900 and -1000 models.

Once the large CWB subassembly is ready for delivery in the coming months, it will be loaded onto a special transport jig and depart Nantes by road to reach Airbus Atlantic’s factory at Montoir-de-Bretagne. There it will be installed into the first A350F’s center fuselage.

When it enters service in 2025, the A350F will carry a payload of up to 109 tonnes over a range of 4,700nm. As a new member of the A350 Family, this freighter variant benefits from state-of-the-art technologies, aerodynamics, and unrivaled operational flexibility and reliability. At the time of writing, the A350F had received 35 orders, comprising: four aircraft from CMA-CGM; seven aircraft from Air Lease Corporation; seven aircraft from Singapore Airlines; four from Air France; two from Silk Way West Airlines; seven from Etihad Airways; and four from Martinair.


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FAA's New Bird Ingestion Requirements

Jinen Gada

05 Apr 2023

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has recently added new airworthiness requirements addressing engine bird ingestion, which is a critical issue that has been a concern for the aviation industry for many years. Bird ingestion into aircraft engines can cause significant damage to the engine, leading to catastrophic events such as engine failure, loss of power, or even crashes. The new requirements are aimed at reducing the risk of such incidents and improving overall flight safety.

This has come, 14 years after bird strikes forced the ditching of US Airways flight 1549 into the Hudson River, the Federal Aviation Administration has completed a rule intended to make aircraft engines more resilient to ingesting birds. 

The FAA has been working on this issue for several years and has gathered data and conducted extensive research on bird strikes and their impact on aircraft engines. The FAA has also been collaborating with other agencies and organizations, such as the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), to develop comprehensive guidelines and standards for bird ingestion prevention and mitigation.

The new airworthiness requirements, which were released in a recent FAA advisory circular, focus on several key areas. Firstly, the requirements provide more detailed guidance on the testing and certification of aircraft engines to ensure that they can withstand bird strikes. This includes new standards for engine fan blade containment and resistance to bird impact, as well as requirements for testing engines under various bird strike scenarios.

Secondly, the requirements address the need for improved bird strike reporting and data collection, which is critical for identifying patterns and trends and developing effective prevention strategies. The FAA is encouraging airlines, airports, and other stakeholders to report all bird strikes and near-misses to the appropriate authorities and to share data and information with the aviation community.

Thirdly, the requirements emphasize the importance of regular engine maintenance and inspection to detect and repair any damage caused by bird strikes. Airlines and maintenance providers are required to follow specific procedures and guidelines for engine inspection and repair, as well as to maintain accurate records of all maintenance activities.

Finally, the requirements include new training and education requirements for pilots and other aviation personnel to increase awareness of the risks of bird strikes and the importance of following proper procedures to prevent and mitigate them. This includes training on how to identify and report bird strikes, as well as how to respond to emergencies caused by engine failure or other bird strike-related incidents.

Overall, the new airworthiness requirements addressing engine bird ingestion are an important step forward in improving flight safety and reducing the risk of catastrophic events caused by bird strikes. The FAA's efforts to develop comprehensive guidelines and standards for bird strike prevention and mitigation demonstrate its commitment to ensuring the safety and security of the aviation industry. By working together with other agencies and stakeholders, the FAA is helping to create a safer, more efficient, and more sustainable aviation system for all.