Industry News

Sale of Air Busan, Air Seoul inevitable

September 13, 2020

Creditors of Asiana Airlines are expected to push for the sale of Air Busan and Air Seoul, in a bid to normalize the nation's second-largest full-service carrier following the collapse of the HDC-Asiana acquisition deal, according to industry officials, Sunday.


Creditors to inject $2 billion into Asiana Airlines after sale collapses

September 11, 2020

Creditors plan to inject $2 billion into debt-ridden Asiana Airlines after a planned sale of South Korea's second-largest carrier collapsed, a state bank said on Friday. Kumho Industrial pulled the 2.5 trillion won ($2.11 billion) sale of the South Korean to Hyundai Development Co and brokerage Mirae Asset Daewoo .

New Jeju Air boss sees pandemic as defining moment

September 1, 2020

E-Bae Kim has been chief executive of Jeju Air since 1 June, following a 30-year career with Asiana Airlines. His predecessor in the role, Lee Seok Joo, left the airline to become chief executive of Jeju Air’s parent, AK Holdings. As with other airline bosses, Kim is grappling with challenges such as managing cash, supporting employees through the crisis, and preparing the airline for the industry’s uncertain future.

Incheon Airport projected to lose over W430b this year

August 31, 2020

Incheon International Airport Corp. is set to post an annual deficit of over 430 billion ($ 363 million) won this year, according to its latest projection Monday.
As things stand in August, the airport is on course to be in the red this year, marking the first time in 17 years since 2003. The projection comes following a sharp drop in the number of flights and revenue during the first half of 2020, which saw its previous projected deficit grow over time since the first quarter.

Asiana deal at critical juncture, leaning toward collapse

August 9, 2020

Creditors of embattled Asiana Airlines Co. are drawing up a set of countermeasures against the potential rupture of a deal to sell the country's No. 2 carrier, as local property developer Hyundai Development Co. is leaning toward withdrawing from the 2.5 trillion-won (US$2.1 billion) deal, industry sources said Sunday.

The state-run Korea Development Bank (KDB) last week warned that HDC should proceed with the deal to buy Asiana Airlines, rejecting HDC's request for another round of due diligence on the country's No. 2 air carrier.


Korean Air, Asiana log earnings surprises on cargo flights as global rivals record losses

August 7, 2020

Korean Air Lines Co. and Asiana Airlines Inc. have bucked the global trend of the devastating aviation industry and made rare quarterly profits, as they focused on cargo flights, defying the coronavirus travel slump.

Asiana Airlines Inc. on Friday joined its bigger local rival Korean Air Lines Co. to report an earnings surprise. In a regulatory filing, the country’s No. 2 carrier said it delivered an operating profit of 115.1 billion won ($96.9 million) in the second quarter, ending six straight quarters of losses. Sales fell 45% on year to 818.6 billion won.

Jeju Air could take $15m hit from cancelled Eastar Jet deal

August 6, 2020

Jeju Air may have scrapped plans to acquire a majority stake in Eastar Jet, but it could still take a further W18 billion ($15 million) hit to its bottom line.

“The [stock sale] contract was cancelled after the settlement date [lapsed], but the [advance payment of W11.95 billion was made to] the seller (Eastar Holdings and two others) and [external auditors are currently reviewing] the proper accounting of [a W10 billion] loan [extended] to Eastar Jet,” Jeju said in a 5 August stock-exchange disclosure of its unaudited second-quarter results.

Asiana Airlines set to go under KDB management as blames goes to HDC Hyundai

August 4, 2020

Asiana Airlines and its family are headed to go under creditors led by Korea Development Bank (KDB) as the state lender more or less gave up on HDC Hyundai Development by blaming the bidder for stalling and wrecking the buyout deal.
“Kumho Industrial (parent of Asiana Airlines) and KDB have not done anything wrong (during the deal process), and the full responsibility of a deal collapse lies with HDC Hyundai Development,” said KDB Chairman Lee Dong-gull during an online briefing on Monday.

Korean Air to revamp website and mobile platforms with Amadeus’s Digital Experience Suite

July 23, 2020

Flag carrier Korean Air is to revamped its website and mobile platforms supported by leading European GDS and technology supplier Amadeus. As part of an expanded partnership the airline will use the Amadeus Digital Experience Suite (DES) as it prepares for a post pandemic world.

South Korea’s Aero K Partners with Skytrac on A320 Cellular Connectivity

July 21, 2020

Aero K Airlines, a low-cost startup carrier based in South Korea, has entered into a partnership with Skytrac Systems to enable global mobile data coverage to its fleet of Airbus A320s operated on domestic and international flights. The airline is the final stages of obtaining an aircraft operating certificate with plans to begin domestic flights from Cheongju International Airport next month. 

Sharp Drop in Passengers at Incheon Airport

July 20, 2020

According to the Incheon International Airport Corporation (IIAC), passenger volume has taken a nose-dive with the daily average number of passengers plummeting to around 7,000 people in recent weeks. Before COVID-19, around 200,000 passengers made use of the airport every day.

The airport corporation said last Saturday that for the period from January 1 through July 16, the number of visitors to the airport amounted to 18.9 million in total, only half of the tally recorded during the same period last year (38.7 million)

Korean Air Seeks to Convert Passenger Jets into Cargo Planes amid Rising Demand

July 20, 2020

Korean Air Lines Co., South Korea’s biggest carrier, said Monday it is seeking to convert some of its passenger jets into cargo planes to keep the business afloat amid the new coronavirus outbreak.

Korean Air will consult with the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport to remove seats on some of its 26 B777-300ER passenger jets and fill them with cargo, a company spokesman said over the phone.

Asiana Airlines Reportedly Considering Plan B as Sale to HDC Likely to Fall through

July 20, 2020

Asiana Airlines has begun reviewing a Plan B as its sale to HDC Hyundai Development is likely to fall through. The faltering airline has reportedly launched a task force to review its options. One of the options is to look for ways for survival under the wing of Kumho Asiana Group.  Another option is to promote separate sales of Asiana Airlines and its subsidiaries, including low cost carriers Air Seoul and Air Busan, after handing over some of Asiana Airlines’ service routes to the subsidiaries. 

Jeju Air claims time is up for M&A deal with Easter, leaves room for govt mediation

July 16, 2020

South Korean leading budget carrier Jeju Air Co., South Korea’s top budget carrier on Thursday claimed it no longer was bound to the contract to acquire smaller LCC peer Easter Jet Co., but nevertheless left the room open for government mediation before a complete walkout.

Korean Air to sell in-flight business to Hahn & Company for about $840 mn

July 6, 2020

Korean Air Lines Co. Ltd. has tentatively agreed to sell its in-flight duty free and meal service units to the country’s second-largest private equity firm Hahn & Company, with the carve-out expected to secure almost 1 trillion won ($840 million) for the cash-strapped flagship carrier, according to industry sources on July 6.

The two companies are in final discussions on the terms and conditions of the deal which Korean Air plans to report to the board meeting on July 7. The deal value may vary depending on how the meal service is priced.

Additionally, Hahn & Company is considering buying the aviation training center of Korean Air located in Yeongjong Island for an undisclosed sum, which is expected to help solve its liquidity problems caused by the global pandemic.

Meet Aero K - to commence first service on 11-Aug-2020

July 5, 2020

South Korea is set to get another low-cost carrier (LCC) in the next few months with the launch of Aero K. A fun-loving, price-sensitive airline with a twist; Aero K is shaking up the South Korean airline industry in more ways than one.

S. Korea's Int'l Air Passengers Plunge 98% in Q2 amid COVID-19

July 5, 2020

The number of South Korean international air travelers plunged nearly 98 percent in the second quarter from a year earlier due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to data by the Korea Civil Aviation Association on Sunday, the number of air passengers on international routes by local air carriers dipped 97-point-eight percent on-year to 328-thousand in the April-June period.

HDC wins all overseas regulatory approvals for Asiana takeover

July 3, 2020

HDC Hyundai Development Co. said Friday it has received all overseas regulatory approvals for its takeover of Asiana Airlines Inc. and is in talks with the airline's creditors for renegotiations over acquisition terms.

Regulators in the United States, China, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkey, Russia and South Korea already approved HDC's planned takeover of Asiana Airlines. On Thursday, Russia was the final country to approve the integration of the Asiana takeover, the company said in a statement.

Aviation-Centered Mergers and Acquisition in South Korea Slow to a Halt

June 30, 2020

With COVID-19 raging throughout the world, the aviation industry has experienced its longest battle in decades. In South Korea, mergers and acquisitions have halted since the pandemic began, a development that has proven particularly impactful for the aviation industry and those looking to take part in it.

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