On the occasion of the ATR annual press conference, which took place today in Paris, StÃ©phane Mayer, ATR CEO, announced a record turnover of US $ 1.3 billion for 2008. Such result continues the strong growth of ATR since the recovery of the turboprop market in 2005, and represents an increase of around 140% in the last three years.
â€œThe outstanding annual turnover achieved in 2008 is the recognition to the strong efforts that we have done in a particularly difficult year taking into account the global economic context. Despite such difficulties, we have achieved an important rate of growth, including a doubling of aircraft deliveries in two years, while keeping one of our highest historical backlogs. In such complicated times we are specially gratified by the confidence shown both from our current operators and our new customersâ€. He added: â€œWe have intensified our worldwide expansion with the aim of being closer to our operators, to support them and to provide them a high-quality service. We are proud of having achieved also a main milestone by powering on and starting the ground tests of the ATR -600 series, the most advanced regional turboprop aircraft under developmentâ€. He concluded: â€œDespite the current difficult times, the demand for turboprops is here for the long term. We will continue to develop our product and our services to maintain our leading position of over 50% in the turboprop marketâ€.
ATR booked orders for 42 new aircraft (see figure 1) and options for 14 aircraft in 2008. 23 of these orders have been booked with carriers in the Asia Pacific region, thus confirming the importance of this zone in the success of ATR since the recovery of the turboprop market. In addition to this, ATR added 5 new customers in 2008, representing almost 40% of the total orders of the year.
Since the recovery of the turboprop market, ATR has booked net orders for 295 new aircraft. From the beginning of the programme, ATR has sold 979 new aircraft (421 ATR 42s and 558 ATR 72s).
ATR portfolio is today composed of some 140 operators in some 80 countries.
ATR delivered 55 new aircraft in 2008 (see figure 2), versus 44 in 2007 and 24 in 2006, thus representing a growth of some 130% in two years. As of December 31st 2008, ATR has delivered a total of 810 aircraft (403 ATR 42s and 407 ATR 72s).
ATR finished 2008 with a backlog of 169 aircraft, which represents over two and a half years of production. Among the backlog, there is a total of 39 ATR -600 series aircraft, thus showing the confidence the customers placed in this new version.
With its US $ 1.3 billion in 2008, ATR reached a record in the annual turnover, which represents an increase of around 140% in the last three years (see figure 3).
ATR achieved in 2008 an important milestone with the power-on and the beginning of the ground tests, as scheduled on the development plan, of the ATR -600 pre-series aircraft.
In 2008, ATR continued the reinforcement of its customer support activities and positioned a new ATR training simulator in Kuala Lumpur. In connexion with the policy of continually improving communication and enhancing the support for its operators, ATR has organized two different cycles of conferences in different places of the world, one covering the overall operators conference and the other covering more specifically the training activities. The annual turnover of the customer support activities also reached in 2008 a record, with US $ 240 million. In addition to this, ATR inked in 2008 an important Global Maintenance Agreement (GMA) covering the fleet of both Malaysia Airlinesâ€™ subsidiaries, MASwings and Firefly.
To face the challenges of the increased activity, ATR increased in 2008 its workforce up to 860 employees. The total ATR staff increased some 33% in the last two years.
In terms of deliveries, ATR plans to deliver more than 60 new aircraft during 2009. In order to cope with the current financial situation, ATR will strengthen its activities to assist its clients in order to source the optimal financial arrangements on the market for their aircraft deliveries. For 2009, ATR targets a turnover of over US $ 1.4 billion.
These last years, turboprops are achieving higher commercial results than jets in the regional market. The commercial potential for turboprops is high both in growing economies and in regions where turboprops are replacing regional jets or previous turboprop versions. In addition to this, ATR is today the only manufacturer of a 50-seat turboprop manufacturer. ATR continue the objective in 2009 to maintain its leading position over 50% of the turboprop market share.
Concerning the support and services activities, ATR will officially recognize this year a certain number of MRO providers in key areas of the world, to provide guidance and ensure the best quality of maintenance to the family of ATR operators. In addition to this, ATR is evaluating further developments of its regional policy. This mainly includes the evaluation of further training centers in zones such the USA, Latin-America and Africa.
In 2009, ATR will continue the development of the ATR -600 series. The ATR pre-series aircraft will do its maiden flight this year. The entry into service of the first ATR -600 series aircraft is scheduled for 2011.