Brazil: Traffic growth stalls in late 2012; Avianca grows domestic capacity by 80%
Since our last look at the Brazilian market, Brazil’s airports had returned to growth with domestic and international passenger numbers growing on average respectively by 12% and 5.5% monthly in the period from May to July, and continued the recovery following a weaker spring. In the remaining months of 2012, domestic traffic continued to grow at ever slower rates and in December, it eventually showed a decline of 4.8%. In the same period, international traffic only showed positive growth in October (0.8%). However, while December closed with a 3.5 decline in the international segment, 2.8% annual growth was noted (down from 13.9% in 2011). Domestic growth for the year fell to 6.9%, down from 16.0% in 2011 and 21.2% in 2010.
Webjet in a flat spin
In November 2012, GOL announced the closure of its subsidiary Webjet, which it only purchased a year earlier. The two companies had a combined market share of 38.6% in December 2012 (as measured in RPKs), down from 40.9% in the preceding year. According to the airline’s statement, the disposal of Webjet’s fleet will result in capacity cuts of up to 8% (as measured in ASMs) in the first half of 2013, but is not expected to affect GOL’s market share. GOL’s CEO, Paulo Kakinoff, commented: “WebJet’s fleet of 737-300s was shown to be economically unfeasible for the domestic market due to high fuel costs and the weaker exchange rate raising maintenance costs.”
Avianca on the offensive
According to ANAC data for 2012, domestic capacity (ASKs) has grown by 2.72% compared with the previous year. Azul has grown its ASKs by 27.9%, while Trip has grown by 41.1%. TAM, the leading domestic airline, has reduced its capacity by 1.1%, followed by GOL, which cut 5.4% of its capacity (with Webjet shedding further 5.7%). Notably, Avianca grew its offering as measured in ASMs by 82.3% in 2012, and at 79.4% had the highest load factor in the domestic market. This compares to an average of 73% in Brazil’s domestic market (70.2% in the preceding year).
Five new international routes so far in 2013
Over a dozen domestic routes and half a dozen international services were launched in Brazil last year. So far, 2013 saw the inauguration of three new routes, including TAME’s thrice-weekly service from Guayaquil to São Paulo Guarulhos. Moreover, Alitalia commenced a seasonal service from Rome to Fortaleza in the north-east of the country, while LAN added daily flights from Rio de Janeiro to Miami, FL, this week. The latter added to the existing service by TAM (also daily), LAN’s Brazilian merger partner, has brought about increased route leverage against American Airlines’ twice-daily departures on the route.
Other previously announced route launches for the current year are Ethiopian Airlines’ thrice-weekly service from Addis Ababa to São Paulo (via Lome in Togo and Rio de Janeiro), and Etihad’s new route from Abu Dhabi of the same frequency. anna.aero has no domestic routes announcements in Brazil on record at the moment.
|2012 domestic launches|
|01-Feb-12||Azul||Brasilia (BSB)||Belo Horizonte (CNF)||18||E190|
|01-Feb-12||Viracopos (VCP)||Londrina (LDB)||12||E190|
|06-Feb-12||Viracopos (VCP)||Bauru/Arealva (JTC)||13||ATR72|
|27-Feb-12||Campo Grande (CGR)||Cuiaba (CGB)||6||E195|
|27-Feb-12||Maringa (MGF)||Campo Grande (CGR)||6||E195|
|25-Mar-12||Passaredo||Cascavel (CAC)||Curitiba (CWB)||6||ERJ145|
|02-May-12||TRIP||Goiania (GYN)||Campo Grande (CGR)||6||E190|
|13-May-12||Ipatinga (IPN)||Rio de Janeiro Santos Dumont (SDU)||6||ATR42|
|14-May-12||Viracopos/Campinas (VCP)||Curitiba (CWB)||7||E170|
|21-May-12||Azul||Vitoria (VIX)||Recife (REC)||7||E190/5|
|22-May-12||Viracopos/Campinas (VCP)||Cascavel (CAC)||14||ATR72|
|23-Jul-12||TRIP||São Paulo Guarulhos (GRU)||Cascavel (CAC)||7||ATR72|
|02-Sep-12||Cuiaba (CGB)||Cacoal (OAC)||6||ATR42|
|2012 international launches|
|03-Jan-12||Emirates||Dubai (DXB)||Rio de Janeiro (GIG)||7||B773ER|
|01-Jun-12||LACSA||San Jose (SJO)||Brasilia (BSB, via BOG)||4||A319|
|14-Jun-12||American Airlines||Miami, FL (MIA)||Manaus (MAO)||7||B738|
|14-Jun-12||LAN Colombia||Bogota (BOG)||São Paulo Guarulhos (GRU)||2||B737|
|23-Jun-12||Copa Airlines||Panama City (PTY)||Recife (REC)||4||B73G|
|27-Sep-12||SATA||Lisbon (LIS)||Salvador de Bahia (SSA)||1||A313|
|27-Oct-12||Condor||Frankfurt (FRA)||Rio de Janeiro (GIG)||1||B763ER|
|07-Jan-13||TAME Ecuador||Guayaquil (GYE)||São Paulo (GUR)||3||A319|
|14-Jan-13||Alitalia||Rome Fiumicino (FCO)||Fortaleza (FOR)||2||B772ER|
|22-Jan-13||LAN||Rio de Janeiro (GIG)||Miami, FL (MIA)||7||763|
|01-Jun-13||Ethiopian Airlines||Addis Ababa (ADD)||São Paulo Guarulhos (GRU)**||3||B763|
|01-Jun-13||Etihad||Abu Dhabi (AUH)||São Paulo Guarulhos (GRU)||3||A346|
|Source: anna.aero new routes database
*WF: Weekly Frequencies at launch. **Operates: ADD-LFW-GIG-GRU-LFW-ADD.