SIA has been battling strong competition from Asian low-priced carriers and Middle Eastern airlines, which now boast modern fleets and top-quality inflight services.
Acknowledging intense pressure on yields in major markets coupled with geopolitical and economic uncertainties, SIA said it is incorporating SIA Cargo back into Singapore Airlines as a division of the company, "in a move meant to improve efficiency through greater synergy with the wider SIA Group", it said.
The mainline airline will remove two A330-300s, four A380s and three Boeing 777s to bring its fleet to 109 aircraft by the end of the financial year.
Shares of SIA - the only Asian airline to have flown the Concorde and the first in the world to fly the A380 superjumbo - have risen 11 per cent this year, lagging behind the 15 per cent gains for the Bloomberg Asia Pacific Airlines Index.
Singapore Airlines (SIA) on Thursday reported a net loss in the fourth quarter, causing full-year profit to drop by more than half as intense competition continued to buffet the carrier.
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SIA said the new aircraft would enable the group to expand its network and boost competitiveness in both the full-service and low-priced segments. Pre-tax, the result was a SGD$518.6 million net profit, down from SGD$972.4 million in 2016. It also expected its decision to operate Scoot and Tiger under the Scoot brand to deliver advantages.
On a positive note, however, Mr Sobie added that SIA is taking the right steps and has "done a lot" to adapt to the structural changes in the marketplace. "Building on this foundation, the next phase of the SIA Group's transformation has been launched". The aim is to "identify new revenue-generation opportunities", SIA said in a press statement on May 18, 2017. They noted that although load factors received a lift, this had come at the expense of yields.
Singapore Airlines, or what SIA calls the Parent Airline Company, suffered a 20.4 per cent drop in operating profit to S$386 million.
SilkAIr improved its result from $S91m to $S101m, backed by a 9.5 per cent increase in passenger traffic. "Cargo remains an important part of our business, and we remain committed to operating a fleet of dedicated freighter aircraft to carry specialised cargo and provide feed to the overall SIA Group network".
Group revenues in the three months to March 31 were pretty flat at S$3.72bn, it said after close of market yesterday.