David L. Calhoun, President and CEO of Boeing, has painted a dire picture of the US aviation market, during an interview with US broadcaster NBC.
He agreed with the suggestion that a major US airline would go out of business as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, pointing to September as a crucial time for something to happen.
Calhoun believes that air traffic levels will at best be at 50% by the end of the year, prompting adjustments to be made by airlines.
One airline that is making adjustments now is Avianca, which has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. By doing so, it hopes to reorganise itself and preserve its 100-year-old heritage. What it isn’t preserving is its Peru operations which are being wound down.
Such measures are having a profound effect on the supply chain.
This week, both Astronics and Gogo announced Q1 results for 2020, with both showing increased losses largely attributable to the fall in passenger air traffic and continuing mass groundings of aircraft in both commercial and business aviation.
It’s interesting to note that Gogo’s President and CEO, Oakleigh Thorne, told analysts that the company was in talks with its satellite partners to renegotiate costs as it reduced the capacity it used to meet the IFC needs of its airline customers.
“We’ll obviously favour partners in the future who help us today,” he warned.
While such an attitude of ‘You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours,’ may be enough to keep some companies and partnerships afloat during this pandemic storm, others may find it draws blood instead.
It was great to be involved in Flightplan at the end of April. As part of the day, Inmarsat Aviation launched an interactive poll to gather views and predictions from across the industry on possible paths to recovery from COVID-19. Hundreds of responses have already been shared, but it’s not too late to have your say. To share your thoughts on where the future of aviation is headed, visit the live survey here.