News in brief from TAM, IATA, Air Canada, Aer Lingus, von Essen and Virgin Atlantic

TAM net income rises 26.16%

TAM, Brazil’s largest airline, reported £17.15m net income for the first quarter, a rise from £13.6m in the same quarter for 2008.

This increase represents a 26.16% increase despite a 3% decrease in the number of passengers in 2008.

In the first three months of 2009 TAM carried 7.3m passengers compared to 7.5m in first quarter lst year.

Operating income also increased by 129% to £62.1m from £27m in the same period last year.

A TAM spokesperson said the positive results were driven by an increase in flight revenues representing a 9.2% increase on domestic flights and 29.9% internationally.

The growth was also attributed to “other operating sources” such as TAM’s frequent flyer programme TAM Fidelidade. The spokesperson said this resulted in a £90.57m revenue increase.

TAM closed the first quarter of 2009 with an average market share of 49.5% domestically and 85.5% in international market share among Brazilian airline companies.


France employs One-Stop Security

France will implement the International Air Transport Association (IATA)’s One-Stop Security procedure this year to reduce airport hassles for passengers.

The method, already used by the majority of European countries, allows for passengers to be screened only once at the beginning of their journey but eliminates the need for a second screening during flight connections.

One-Stop Security will be applied to individual airports beginning with Lyon and selected terminals at Paris Charles de Gaulle.

IATA estimates the change will affect 6m passengers and save $30m a year.

Giovanni Bisignani, IATA’s director general and ceo, said the next step would be to “integrate One-Stop Security into the global system” and urged the UK and Ireland to adopt the procedure.


Air Canada revenue drops

Air Canada reported a quarterly net loss of CAD$400m (€255.6m) compared to CAD$288m (€184m) this time last year.

The company’s operating loss also declined to CAD$188m (€120.1m), excluding items.

Passenger revenue dropped by 13% to CAD$2.01 (€1.28bn), which Air Canada attributed to a decrease in traffic.

This quarter Air Canada said it also reduced its overall capacity by 10.3%.

However, the company has identified cost saving of more than CAD$250 (€159.8) over the next 18 months.


Aer Lingus April passengers rise

Aer Lingus passengers rose to 945,000, a 10.9% increase from 2008.

Load factor also rose by 4.1 percentage points compared to April figures last year.


von Essen launches incentives package for hotels

von Essen hotels have launched “Clearer Conscience Conferences,” a new programme aimed to help local suppliers and Just a Drop charity.

The Royal Crescent in Bath, Seaham Hall near Newcastle and Cliveden near London are the first von Essen hotels to implement the new programme.

The hotels will feature menus that use ingredients sourced within five miles of the hotel.

von Essen is also donating £1 per delegate to Just a Drop international charity, which aims to provide clean water and sanitation “where it is needed most,” the company said.

 As part of the programme, von Essen is offering different booking options and discounted rates for partners the night before or after the conference.


Virgin signs full content deal with Travelport

Virgin Atlantic has signed a multi-year full content deal with Travelport GDS.

The agreement give agents connected to Travelport’s two GDSs, Galileo and Worldspan access to all of Virgin’s published and web fares and its inventory.

Jon Harding, Virgin’s general manager international and distribution, said: “Agents remain an essential part of our multi-channel distribution strategy as we look to build and grow.

“Travelport’s Galileo and Worldspan GDS platforms offer us exceptional reach.”

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