A380 order welcome but customer base remains narrow
Having secured a critical order in January for its superjumbo Airbus must now focus on broadening the depth and breadth of the aircraft customer base. To this end it must find more strategic buyers than can showcase the aircraft in markets where volume and density count. IAG, and in particular British Airways, is an intriguing prospect in this regard. The UK flag carrier already operates 10 A380s and these ply high volume routes from the carrier’s base at Heathrow, London. Heathrow is a tightly constrained airport which is technically full, especially at peak operating times. The planning process to advance additional capacity appears mired in elongated political and environmental reviews which could push new capacity out by ten years or more.

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