VOL. 18, NO. 6
N E W S A N D A N A LY S I S F O R T H E I F E C & I N T E R I O R S E X E C U T I V E
AIX/WTCE AMERICAS SEATTLE TOUCH POINTS OF THE
PASSENGER EXPERIENCE What’s next for IFE
Seating and flooring in all classes
ZODIAC’S VIP p. PARTNER
TE CONNECTIVITY p.
IFSA/APEX AWARDS p.
ne of the most fascinating graphic displays at the Airline Passenger Experience Association Expo held last month in Anaheim are the ones that show the number of aircraft in the air above the U.S. and the number of passengers using inflight connectivity at that very moment. One of the places it could be found was at ViaSat, the supplier of the Fly-Fi system for JetBlue Airways. ViaSat’s service is designed to deliver 12 mbps to each passenger inflight rather than simply an aggregate amount of bandwidth to the aircraft that leaves passengers competing for service. This means uniform service and savings for the airline. Enough so that JetBlue is able to offer their Wi-Fi service for free. The airline isn’t alone in offering the free service that is now seen in many hotels around the world. As we were going to press for this issue, Nok Air, in faraway Thailand announced that it too would be offering inflight Internet for free through a partnership with Global Eagle Entertainment and Thaicom Public Company Limited. It was the first airline in Asia to offer the feature. Airlines seem to spend a lot of time looking at the next generations. More and more, speakers at events such as APEX and others dwell on the generation of millennials, who have grown up connected 24/7 and expect connectivity as much as they expect to take their next breath. As Ed Shapiro, Global Eagle’s Chairman said in Anaheim, many have come to expect content will be available whenever, wherever and on demand. Another speaker, Howard Charney of Cisco Systems said he was told by none other that Microsoft founder Bill Gates that the interior of an aircraft was the original World Wide Web. It was the force that began bringing the world closer in a network that can be traced back to Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, viewed by many as the birthplace of flight. Will airlines continue that tradition of linking the world, this time with connectivity in the cabin? With a take rate averaging 40% on JetBlue, it’s clear that passengers are interested and willing to partake in inflight connectivity, even if it means merely sending a few e-mails and checking sports scores. On September 24, ViaSat announced that JetBlue had surpassed the one-millionth customer to connect to the Fly-Fi system. The airline expects to complete Fly-Fi portal fleet wide next year. By then, how many more airlines will join JetBlue in making inflight connectivity a gate-to-gate complimentary offering? We’ll have to wait and see.
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VOL. 18, NO. 6
Contents 12 AIX/WTCE IN FOCUS
PAX International talks with exhibition planners of both Seattle events
IFE AND CONNECTIVITY 17 ON THE HORIZON
Inflight entertainment and connectivity continues to evolve with new partners and new technology, keeping the industry moving forward
20 PULLING IN THE SIGNAL
With high-speed broadband in demand, one of the key components, the aircraft antenna at the top of the fuselage, is also top of mind among IFEC suppliers
15 NEVER AN IDLE MOMENT
Zodiac Aerospace stays busy with the recent acquisition of Greenpoint Technologies and the development of a second option of the integrated Space-Flex PRM lavatory in conjunction with Airbus
22 FORWARD FLOORING
Technological advancements on the aircraft-flooring front are on the rise, and the manufacturers and suppliers responsible for said innovation show no signs of slowing down
24 A PITCHED BATTLE
Aircraft are rolling off the assembly lines at the two major airframe companies, and the companies that make seating products are trying a variety of methods to lure potential customers
26 MAKING CONNECTIONS
TE Connectivity continues to meet the increasing connectivity challenges with new products and innovative solutions
27 TO THE SKIES WITH COMPLEMENTS
With an uptrend toward more use of appetizers inflight, PAX International speaks with suppliers serving up satisfying appetizers and accompaniments
29 INNOVATION IN THE GALLEY
The newest in galley equipment requires high quality food products that can adapt to the specific needs of travel catering, and two companies are noting the shift and are supplying products accordingly
31 AT THE PLATE
With the standards for airline catering on the rise, the tableware upon which the meal itself rests is being placed under scrutiny, and suppliers are reacting accordingly
33 TAKING THE PLUNGE
4 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
From a classic cup of tea to an electrolyte-infused beverage, the refreshment offering onboard is becoming more and more diverse, bringing passenger comfort to new heights
PARTNERSHIPS AND ACQUISITIONS 35 PARTNERS IN PROFIT
Inflight retail is coming into its own as a source of airline revenue, but even big players like LSG Sky Chefs can use the expertise of specialized startups
38 UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL
A look at some of this year’s AIX and WTCE Americas exhibitors
what love they
and what they
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Fiji Airways updates dining, shopping, reading experience Fiji Airways has made a number of changes to its onboard passenger experience, adding a new signature dish designed by renowned Fiji-based chef, Lance Seeto, an updated in flight magazine and duty free catalog. The new Lomalagi Inflight Duty Free shopping brings passengers premium inflight retailers, from local Fijian names to well-known international brands. The inflight magazine FijiTime, has also been redeveloped to include compelling destination stories and striking imagery. The Business Class signature dish is filled with tropical flavors and artisan cooking techniques of the Fiji Islands and designed by Fiji Airways Culinary Ambassador, Chef Lance Seeto. The meat option of the signature dish features a charred beef fillet with masala chai tea rub and herb buttered prawns, with a side of sweet potato duchess, Fijian organic vegetables, and tempered cardamom jus. The fish option is a seared wild fish poached in coconut herb buttered prawns, coriander and pineapple rice pilaf, along with Fijian organic vegetables and red papaya curry sauce. There is also a vegetarian option. “With the improvements brought onboard, we have empowered our crew members to elevate this outstanding service and deliver an experience that is fitting of a world-class boutique airline,” said Stefan Pichler, Fiji Airways’ Managing Director and CEO. “The national airline of any country is the first and last point of contact for its visitors, especially here in Fiji. There’s an opportunity to showcase the destination, its people, and its diverse culture through the inflight food,” said Chef Lance Seeto. “Fiji Airways has joined
Fiji Airways Culinary Ambassador, Chef Lance Seeto
the culinary renaissance that is now underway across our resorts, hotels, and restaurants. The new Fiji Airways Business Class menu is inspired by the flavors and techniques of all the cultures that influence its food, not just the native iTaukei, but Indian, Chinese and colonial British as well. Fiji’s tropical island cuisine is no longer just presented on the plate, but is now also in the skies.” Along with the introduction of the signature dish, the new Business Class restaurant-style catering concept offers new menu and service elements, such as the Yadra Vinaka (good morning) sleeper service, an hors d’oeuvre service, and an ‘à la carte’ dining option for premium travelers. A Signature Welcome Cocktail and Mocktail, designed to reflect a Fijian sunset, have also been introduced in partnership with Fiji Rum.
Arconics gains customer in Dutch charter Twelve of the aircraft in the fleet of the Corendon Dutch Airlines will be outfitted with the CloudStore Wireless IFE software platform from Arconics for inflight entertainment and ancillary revenue. Corendon plans to install the platform on its fleet of 737-800s starting in the first quarter of next year. Included in the deal is a selection of solutions including, the software platform, mobile apps and content licensing and encoding. Passengers will be able to access movies from Hollywood and Dutch titles, television shows, music, map displays and destination content. Flight Focus will supply hardware. Plans call for the system to provide ancillary revenue through an ordering process provided by MI Airline that will work on the Iridium credit card payment program, processing payments through the Iridium credit card verification systems. The airline is part of the Corendon Group, and operates scheduled and charter service out of the Netherlands and Turkey. Last year, approximately 600,000 people b o oke d holidays through Corendon. Corendon Dutch Airlines has a fleet of 737s in the Netherlands and Turkey 6 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
Air Europa takes Panasonic IFEC for its Dreamliner fleet Air Europa announced September 16 it had selected Panasonic Avionics Corporation’s eX3 and eXConnect in flight entertainment and communications on its 787-8 Dreamliner fleet. The airline will be offering inflight broadband by choosing Panasonic’s Kuband satellite service for Internet, email, and social media sites from a connected seatback or their own personal electronic devices. “We are honored that Air Europa has selected Panasonic to offer such an exciting and strategic service,” said Panasonic in an announcement at this year’s APEX/ IFSA Expo. “Their passengers can now expect an incredible entertainment experience and broadband Wi-Fi everywhere these aircraft fly.”
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El Al picks partners for connectivity The BoardConnect product from Lufthansa Systems and the Exede in the Air connectivity service from ViaSat will form the backbone of the entertainment and connectivity offering on El Al Israel Airlines. The airline has been working with Lufthansa Systems since June of this year when the DreamStream was launched on El Al. Installations are planned for the airline’s 737s and 767s. Tapping into the Exede satellite system from ViaSat, El Al will be offering passengers wireless Internet access and entertainment that can be accessed on laptops, tablets or smartphones. Both the systems will be integrated into the airlines 737NG fleet by the middle of next year. ViaSat has a partnership with Eutelsat that will allow use of the Ka-band for inflight connectivity through Europe and the Mediterranean basin. BoardConnect from Lufthansa Systems works with a standard WLAN and depending on the size of the aircraft, needs from two to five access points in the cabin to stream a variety of content including internet connectivity to every passenger device. It can be used with Apple iOS, Android and Windows 8.
Norbert Müller, Senior Vice President of BoardConnect at Lufthansa Systems, shows off one of the company’s newest developments, a screen designed for safety standards on the company’s IFE products
digEcor brings power source to APEX Though digEcor is primarily known as the pioneer supplier of handheld IFE, the company has not sat still, and has added capabilities and new systems to its offerings. This year the Utah-based company was showing visitors to its stand its 5-Volt USB power port that installs easily for passenger use to charge and use PEDs and also available with options for cabin crew. digEcor says that it can also be modified for airlines to gain ancillary revenue by selling power, as well. Since the company was purchased a year ago by Australia’s Total Aviation Solutions, digEcor has found a partner to expand its IFE offerings, with an emphasis on seat-centric use of its digEplayer product. The semi-embedded system has been flying on the 737s of Gulf Air since 2011.
Ben Fuller, Director of Sales and Marketing and Michelle Thomas, Customer Service Manager at digEcor
8 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
Rockwell Collins to expand connectivity options with GX Aviation Connectivity with speeds of up to 50 megabytes per second will be available to commercial aircraft when GX Aviation makes its capabilities globally available next year, and Rockwell Collins will be a value-added reseller of the Inmarsat product. “By combining GX with our current L-Band services, we’ll also be able to provide our airline customers with a complete portfolio of connectivity options for a full range of applications from the cockpit to the cabin,” said Jeff Standerski, Senior Vice President Information Management Services at Rockwell Collins, in the September 8 announcement of the agreement. GX Aviation will be offering a global Ka-band connectivity. The company has been working with Rockwell Collins for more than 20 years on avionics and services. The first of three GX Aviation satellites launched in July of this year. Inmarsat plans to complete the next two launches in time to introduce the GX serves globally by the end of the first half of 2015. The airborne hardware is going through the certification process to support the launch of GX Aviation in 2015. The Cabin Connect system made by Rockwell Collins subsidiary ARINC will make use of the GX Aviation systems increased bandwidth to stream real-time television and television on demand. Rockwell Collins is also expanding the capabilities of Cabin Connect to allow passengers to make voice calls and send text messages. The company is also developing a dashboard feature that will allow airlines to monitor system-critical elements for the crew.
NEWS COMPANY NEWS
Sealed Air tests demand for packaging system Sealed Air was showing visitors to the International Flight Services Association Expo (IFSA) a unique vacuum sealed packaging system from Cryovac that the company says could have applications for inflight service. The process makes use of the Sealed Air Simple Steps® vacuum skin packaging film. With the film and the needed Simple Steps vacuum packaging equipment, caterers could seal meals and snacks in a tight plastic skin that could be easily reheated. The food will have a long shelf life refrigerated and a much longer range frozen. For food safety, the skin reduces the risk of cross contamination and provides a new outlet for special meal ordering on short notice. With a tight vacuum seal there is reduced preparation and cleanup time. The vacuum seal also removes oxygen and seals in fresh flavor. Onboard the aircraft, crew can heat up the products with steam-assisted cooking systems. Vents release the heat and pressure to prevent over cooking.
Thomas Minucci, Market Development Manager Food Care at Sealed Air with the company’s Simple Steps vacuum skin packaging
WESSCO launches creative identity and brand campaign WESSCO International revealed its new creative identity and refreshed brand campaign at the 49th annual APEX/IFSA Expo, September 14-18 in Anaheim. The supplier of amenities and comfort programs to airlines, hotels and cruise lines unveiled the contemporary brand campaign with a presentation led by WESSCO International executives, Bob and Nick Bregman who welcomed trade media to the firm’s booth and lounge. “It was time for WESSCO to spearhead this new creative identity and refreshed brand campaign because digital and social media has changed the way businesses, brands and customers interact with each other. These online channels allow us to engage customers in ways that weren’t possible 10 years ago,” said Nick Bregman, Vice President of Sales and Business Development at WESSCO International. The launch of the creative identity and brand campaign is supported by a contemporary new website, social media strategy and lifestyle brand partnerships. “WESSCO’s hip new persona and changed public face will allow clients to see our variety of products, projects and events on our website and though social media — but WESSCO will still provide the same quality customer service, great sourcing options and unique passenger experience that the industry has come to expect from us,” added Bregman. Following the on-stand presentation and interviews, WESSCO International and trade partners presented a special live performance by American Idol finalist Pia Toscano and her duet partner Jared Lee at the Anaheim Convention Center Grand Plaza outside the APEX/ IFSA main entrance. The centrally located outdoor stage featured Gibson Brands’ CervinVega pro audio sound system and a fully catered ‘velvet-rope’ area at center-stage for more than 100 of WESSCO’s industry partners, media and VIP guests.
10 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
WESSCO International executives Bob and Nick Bregman (right and second from right) welcomed trade media to the company stand. Also pictured are singers Pia Toscano and Jared Lee
Pia Toscano and Jared Lee, known collectively as ‘7East,’ delighted concert-goers with their performances of original and popular tracks. The duo reflects the fresh faces of the campaign and helps emphasize the strong link between creative comfort programs and lasting memories in the travel industry. “We were so excited to host a memorable performance by Pia and Jared. They are featured in our new brand campaign launched the same day, so it was exciting that EXPO attendees were able to see them live,” said Bregman.
Linstol opens China offices and adds staff Linstol has opened offices in Hong Kong and Shanghai and named Craig Mitchell General Manager for Linstol HK & CN operations in Shanghai. Linstol U.K. has named Jakob Levison Sales Manager for Linstol U.K. He has a 20-year retail management background in Denmark, Chicago and San Diego with headset maker Bang & Olufsen. Also, Jacquie Matute has been appointed Account Manager at Linstol U.S. She has a 10-year background in the advertising industry and for the last five years has been a member of the AT&T Team Account.
ing strategies and building joint business development plans,” said MITR Sales Director Christophe Bouye. Manktelow joins the company from Highland Spring where he managed its Foodservice Sector. Before his position with Highland Spring, Manktelow was with Swiss chocolate maker Lindt.
Flying Food Honolulu adds new Executive Chef Flying Food Group has named Brazil native Isabella Nunes-Baptista Executive Chef at its Honolulu (HNL) catering facility. A graduate of New York’s Institute of Culinary Education, Nunes-Baptista worked under famed Chef Daniel Boulud at his Daniel Restaurant in Manhattan. She later was Bakery Manager for Whole Foods Market, working on the launch of Whole Foods, Kahala Mall, Hawaii. An experienced pastry chef, she has expertise in gluten-free preparations. “Isabella creatively combines knowledge of Brazilian cuisine, world-class fine dining and cutting-edge approaches and trends,” said Flying Food Corporate Executive Chef Henri Alcade. “She is an outstanding addition to our skilled, multi-ethnic culinary team.”
Jakob Levison (left) and Craig Mitchell at this year’s APEX event in Anaheim
from his role, effective December 31 to pursue new personal and professional interests. Bucher served as the Group’s Chief Financial Officer and as a member of the Executive Management Board since May 2008. During his tenure as CFO the company was listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange in May 2009. He also executed debt and equity financings as well as the tax structuring of the Group. “Management and the Board of Directors regret Thomas’ decision to leave gategroup after more than six successful years and thank Thomas for his strong commitment, guidance and leadership during his tenure as CFO of gategroup,” said Andreas Schmid, Chairman of the Board of Directors and Andrew Gibson, CEO of gategroup.
Spafax hires Agostino to handle luxury brands
Manktelow to handle inflight sales for Mars Mars International Travel Retail (MITR) has appointed Tom Manktelow Business Development Manager – Inflight. Manktelow will be responsible for growing and developing inflight business globally, working with partners in both catering and buy-on-board snacking and gift items. “Mars’ extensive and globally known portfolio enables us to present airlines with a fabulous range of miniatures, minis, snacking and sharing pouches, and gift items to cover all inflight needs. It will be down to Tom to work with airlines globally to develop this business, establishing long-term relations with customers, shap-
Bucher to end time at gategroup gategroup’s Chief Financial Officer and member of the Executive Management Board Thomas Bucher will step down
Global content agency Spafax has announced a new hire to lead its growing luxury brands portfolio. Christal Agostino has been hired as Senior Strategist, Luxury and Lifestyle Brands. She joins Spafax with six years of experience in the marketing and communications field. Most recently Agostino served as Manager, Global Partnerships for the Fairmont Hotels, Raffles and Swissôtel Brands, where she oversaw partnerships with leading international apparel, automotive, beauty, wine and spirits, and retail brands. www.pax-intl.com | PAX INTERNATIONAL | 11
Hand in hand
The Emerald City of Seattle is a hub for aviation and technology, both growing industries that make it a natural home for AIX Americas
hough one may be cabin interiors and one may be culinary, the joint Aircraft Interiors Expo Americas and the World Travel Catering Expo Americas are about one thing — the passenger experience. That theme will be played out in the aisles of the two expos and in the panel discussions that will be held over the four days in Seattle. Aircraft Interiors Expo Event Manager Katie Murphy talked with PAX International about the venues and the industry for a Q and A discussion before the start of the October 14-16 event. PAX International: With Seattle as both a technology and aviation hub, do you think Aircraft Interiors Americas has found a permanent home there? Katie Murphy: In a word — yes! This is already our sixth event within the Americas region and our fourth year in Seattle. There is a cluster of some 650 aerospace companies, so in many ways this is an obvious choice. But as with technology, we’ve also been changing to keep in tune with the needs of exhibitors and visitors. For example, last year we introduced the Seating and IFE Integration Symposium and this time we’re bringing the Passenger Experience Conference model from Hamburg to further evolve discussions with a slant on the Americas market. As a company, Reed Exhibitions continually monitors and listens to feedback from both exhibitors and visitors to ensure that Aircraft Interiors Expo Americas is not only staged in the best location, but that it is also timely, relevant and educational to reflect the latest developments in the fast-changing world of aircraft interiors. PAX: This year’s Expo is coming at the end of a pretty successful year for airlines in North America. Do you see that reflected in the interest in attendance in any way? Murphy: Yes, you’re right as this is proving to be another year of growth for air travel. As an example, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) recently released its July 2014 global passenger traffic results, which confirmed a growth of 5.3% com-
12 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
pared to the previous July. International passenger numbers also rose by 5.5% in the same period, and North American airlines saw demand grow by 2.9%. To sum up, general business conditions are the strongest we’ve seen since mid-2010, which is good news. So there is buoyancy in the market and that is being reflected with both the number and range of exhibitors on the show floor, as well as interest from airline buyers and other visitors. I think it’s also important to say that although situated in Seattle, there is a global aspect, which attracts the industry because of the event’s international appeal and potential networking opportunities. PAX: The Aircraft Interiors Expo seems to attract a group of companies that are very involved in systems and components and materials for the cabin. In what ways can visitors find commonality in terms of the product offering with the first WTCE in the U.S.? Murphy: For me it’s all about ‘Passenger Experience’ and there are many parts of the puzzle that work together in delivering this experience. This year, various levels of the aircraft seating supply chain will be represented, for example first-time exhibitors Mimura Industries and Acro Aircraft Seating. Mimura Industries from Japan will display manufactured parts for aircraft seat frames while Acro Aircraft Seating will present two rows of triple seats with specific design variants likely to appeal to airline buyers. I believe there are clear synergies between Aircraft Interiors and World Travel Catering Expos in terms of passenger experience, based on interdependency. From the minute a passenger is seated, all individual components and systems within the cabin must work in harmony to deliver that experience, whether they’re designed in lighting, seating, food trays or galleys — onboard catering isn’t just about the food. For visitors and delegates, there is commonality between the two shows because there are many connected levels to realize this experience in the air.
PAX: You’ve assembled an interesting line-up of speakers for this year’s AIX. What is some of the criteria you use for selecting topics and discussions? Murphy: I have a very experienced manager who has now run three Passenger Experience Conferences in Hamburg and educational programs at Aircraft Interiors Expo Americas since 2008. She liaises throughout the year with a wide crosssection of industry experts about upcoming issues and passenger experience trends. We focus on those issues that will impact our audience’s business in the short and medium term so they can start considering them over the next year or so. It’s important we find speakers with expertise, passion and the ability to move an audience outside of their comfort zone; to debate passenger experience issues in a new light and I think this year’s line-up of speakers including BAE Systems, Boeing, Google and Panasonic — to name a few — will again be impressive. PAX: Does Reed Exhibitions organize any other large events in the Americas? Murphy: Yes Reed Exhibitions organises 75 events within the Americas region, which attract a wide range of audiences for sectors such as travel (International Luxury Travel Market), jewelry (JCK), enthusiasts (Comic Con, Star Wars), security (ISC Portfolio), sport (PGA Merchandise Show) and engineering, manufacturing and processing (Movimat).
stateside initiative This year will wrap with the second of two expositions in the U.S. designed to highlight innovation and provide networking opportunities. Archana Sharma, Event Manager for the WTCE, outlines the reasons and goals for the Seattle run
he year 2014 will close with two airline catering events in the U.S.: the International Flight Services Assocation Conference and Exhibition (IFSA) and the October World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo (WTCE). As delegates and exhibitors prepared to attend the latter event, PAX International posed a few questions to Archana Sharma of Reed Exhibitions, Event Manager for the WTCE, who will take over the duties for the first time at the WTCE in Seattle. PAX International: How did you determine there was demand for another airline catering event in the fall in the Americas? Archana Sharma: WTCE Hamburg has established itself as a hub for the industry, attracting global air and rail operators. As a result, we have a strong global airline and prospect exhibitor database, which enables us to conduct insightful research. In 2013 we carried out independent research to obtain a clearer overview of the U.S. travel catering and onboard services industry. The results of the research indicated that there was a gap in the U.S. market to showcase innovation, something that, as we have seen from the Hamburg edition of the show, is a key drawing point for the airlines. Many of the airlines that attend WTCE Hamburg use this edition of the show as a platform to source premium
14 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
products for their premium cabins, but need another event mid-cycle to source more economy products and utilize their time to find out what is new and innovative in the industry. WTCE America’s fall timing is a great networking opportunity midway in the year to follow up from the positive meetings carried out in Hamburg. The Passenger Experience Conference will also continue the discussions that were started in Hamburg, and deliver industry insight to ensure that the delegates are fully informed all year round. PAX: What are some of the goals you have for this first WTCE outside of Hamburg? Sharma: We are very excited about taking WTCE to Seattle. Not only because it is the home of Boeing, but also because the show’s co-location with Aircraft Interiors gives us the opportunity to bring the entire passenger experience to the U.S. market leaving no stone unturned. The first WTCE Americas is designed to bring together industry professionals so they can network with each other and discuss the latest innovations. Our aim is to provide another meeting point for the industry and the U.S. is a fantastic place to do so. PAX: WTCE has made a concerted effort to reach out to other transportations modes. What are the possibilities to see some rail and cruise line representatives in Seattle? Sharma: The U.S. is a great location to widen our offering, and Seattle offers a great hub to invite the airline, cruise and rail industry to all that WTCE has to offer. We had a number of rail and cruise operators pre-register for the event and we very much look forward to welcoming them to Seattle. What’s exciting about broadening our offering, is the best practice that can be
shared between sectors. Visitors will be able draw on each other’s experience, which may provide them with some really innovative ideas. PAX: What will visitors find in Cabin Space Live? Sharma: Cabin Space Live is an exciting feature area on the show floor. It will challenge the way visitors think about airline catering and onboard services, aircraft interiors, cabin engineering as well as management systems, and with plenty of opportunities to ask questions, taste and sample, as well as interactive and thought-provoking presentations and demonstrations from industry experts. These free-to-attend sessions really are not to be missed. PAX: Aviation and technology go hand in hand in Seattle and the Passenger Experience Conference will have important representatives from both. What’s been the interest and buzz for the day’s sessions? Sharma: Held ahead of WTCE Americas, the Passenger Experience Conference will build on all the success of Hamburg in addressing contemporary issues surrounding cabin innovation, consumer expectations and strategies for profitability within the cabin, but with a specific focus on the Americas market. There’s been a real buzz around the line up for the conference, particularly in relation to the numerous airline representatives we have confirmed as speakers, including Jeffrey Robinson, Senior Advertising Manager for The Boeing Company; Mark Krolick, Managing Director of Marketing and Product Development for United Airlines; and Paul Edwards, Head of Industrial Design at Airbus. From a hospitality perspective we also have David Rodriguez, Manager Retail Programs for Alaska Airlines who will be looking at maximizing the sales onboard offer, as well as Sally Glenn-Lee, Field Generalist of the People Department at JetBlue Airways who will be taking a fresh approach to service onboard. We also have senior representatives from Google and design consultants Seymour Powell confirmed, who will present their perspectives on the topic of tomorrow’s world in air travel — another notto-be missed addition to the conference. With such great names and brands forming the line up the conference, it really does serve as a strong reflection for the overall quality attendees can expect to experience as part of the show.
INTERIORS: GREENPOINT TECHNOLOGIES Pictured is Greenpoint’s Boeing Business Jet Master Suite
nity to enter a new market, which from an industrial standpoint shows similarities with our other activities, in particular aircraft interiors,” Vastra summed up.
growth was up 7.6%. Over the period, Zodiac notes that sales were particularly strong the Aircraft Systems and AeroSafety Systems segments. Furthermore, Galleys & Equipment and Seats segments continued to resolve the backlog from production delays during the first half of the period. “Excluding the dollar impact, current operating income should slightly increase, but the higher than anticipated cost of the backlog should impact the margin by just under one percentage point,” said a media release from Zodiac. As for a forward-looking statement, the company expects to post growth during the 2014-15 fiscal year due to increased deliveries and the non-recurrence of additional production costs incurred in FY 2013-14.
A longstanding strategy
More in the pipeline
The Greenpoint development is the latest in a long line of acquisitions for Zodiac that most recently include Driessen, TIA and Adder, with all three specializing in cabin interiors; The IMS Company, an expert in inflight entertainment; and TriaGnoSys, a German-based company specializing in inflight connectivity, wireless entertainment and cabin systems. “Since the end of the 70s Zodiac Aerospace has been pursuing a strategy that consists of developing in aerospace niche markets, both by internal and external growth,” Vastra said. “The group has become a world leader in safety products (slides, arresting systems and the like); onboard aircraft systems (power management, water and waste, oxygen and fuel); and aircraft interiors.” Vastra added that Zodiac has ideas on future acquisitions, and has financing available, but declined to comment on specifics. “Our general policy is to take action first and comment later,” he said.
At the same time as Zodiac released its latest sales figures, the company proved that still has more big news up its sleeve. At the Airline Passenger Experience Association Expo 2014 (APEX) in September, Airbus and Zodiac announced that they will develop a second option of the integrated Space-Flex Persons with Reduced Mobility (PRM) lavatory and galley module. Called “Space-Flex v2,” this new version offers a larger galley area while maintaining the original Space-Flex’s benefit of facilitating up to six extra passenger seats. Its entry into service is planned for the first half of 2016. Space-Flex v2 builds on the in-service experience from Space-Flex v1, as well as market feedback from Zodiac’s Innovative Space Interior System. In particular, it leverages on the strengths of both companies in terms of module design and integration optimization. The new cabin option will be particularly attractive for airlines who wish to provide a full tray-catering experience while still facilitating a PRM-capable lavatory at the rear of the aircraft. The galley’s greater capacity for meal trays can also allow an operator to carry sufficient trays to serve both the outward and return sectors, thus avoiding the need to re-stock with food and beverages at outstations, which ensures consistency of the food service offering while helping to minimize turnaround times. Moreover, thanks to a more optimized center lavatory design, Space-Flex v2’s enlarged galley area will accommodate up to eight half-size trolleys—or three full-size plus two half-size trolleys—and the two lavatories, of which one is PRM capable.
NEVER AN IDLE MOMENT Zodiac Aerospace stays busy with the recent acquisition of Greenpoint Technologies and the development of a second option of the integrated Space-Flex PRM lavatory in conjunction with Airbus by RYAN WHITE
odiac Aerospace set the industry abuzz earlier this year when it announced that it finalized the acquisition of Greenpoint Technologies in early June. Based in Kirkland, Washington with a subsidiary in Denton, Texas, Greenpoint is a world leader in VIP Cabin Interiors for widebody aircraft and a Boeing Business Jet completion center. The company employs 450 people and has annual revenues of around US$150 million. PAX International was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to sit down with Pierre Vastra, Executive VP Communications at Zodiac Aerospace to discuss just what these latest developments mean for the company. “Greenpoint and Zodiac Aerospace operate in very different markets,” he told us. “Greenpoint gives us the possibility of entering the market of VIP/VVIP aircraft interiors, where we previously were not. We might see some industrial and technological synergies— materials, engineering and manufacturing processes, for example—between Zodiac Aerospace and Greenpoint, which we will of course explore.” At the same time as Greenpoint Technologies will further enhance Zodiac›s competencies in the domain of VIP and VVIP cabin interiors, Zodiac Aerospace will also support Greenpoint’s development. Zodiac plans to do this by bringing its skills in cabin certification and the design and manufacturing of interior elements such as monuments, galleys, seats and lighting to the table. “Greenpoint represented an opportu-
Greenpoint Technologies will further enhance Zodiac’s competencies in the domain of VIP and VVIP cabin interiors
Standing strong Zodiac’s strategy for growing its business appears to be working. Just ahead of this issue’s publication the company announced the results of its 2013-14 fiscal year. Sales revenue was up by 7.2% at €4,172.6 million (US$5.3 billion), and despite strong negative impacts from exchange rates organic
Greenpoint Technologies is a world leader in VIP Cabin Interiors for widebody aircraft
www.pax-intl.com | PAX INTERNATIONAL | 15
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IFE AND CONNECTIVITY: EVOLUTION OF IFE
he history of inflight entertainment has always been one of adaptation and transitions. Over the decades, good ideas have been adapted and bad ideas have been abandoned. Videotape has been transitioned smoothly into digital content. Inflight Internet has become “connectivity” and its final acceptance, as part of the cabin, appears to be complete. Inflight telephony has moved from beige handsets placed in the seatbacks to personal devices now in the hands of every passenger. At one time, it was thought that inflight gambling would be the killer app for airline ancillary revenue. That idea, perhaps for the better, never really got off the ground. Now as the industry gathers for yet another important yearly event, t h e e volut i on
Inflight entertainment and connectivity continues to evolve with new partners and new technology, keeping the industry moving forward by RICK LUNDSTROM
viewed as one of the many complexities that legacy carriers had to deal with. Almost overnight, Shapiro said those same airlines that overlooked IFE as a part of their service, became customers for the companies gathered in Anaheim. “There is a new appreciation for what our industry has to deliver,” said Shapiro who is also chairman of IFE conglomerate Global Eagle Entertainment.
Throwing the switch
Passengers on Delta Air Lines are experiencing one aspect of this evolution of inflight entertainment when the airline and its service provider, Gogo began adding access to free entertainment on more than 1,000 aircraft in a service known as Delta Studio. Delta Studio was officially launched August 1. With the service, passengers can have inflight entertainment from “There is a new their seat or through their own Wi-Fi appreciation for enabled devices on any flight of more what our industry than 1.5 hours. Access to all the content is free for passengers in the has to deliver:” - Global Eagle Entertainment airline’s premium cabins. Economy Chairman Ed Shapiro passengers also have access to most of the titles in the Delta selection of IFEC is clear with the option to purchase additional like it never was premium content that includes the latest before. The field movies and programming from HBO and of c omp a n i e s Showtime. Passengers also have the abilvying for a place ity to take the downloaded programming in the cabin has never been larger and more off the aircraft and access the unwatched varied than it is today. portions on their personal device. So what are the companies shaping the evolution? PAX International caught up with a few this past summer and at this year’s APEX/IFSA Expo in Anaheim. Their activities paint a picture of some the cutting edge trends and happenings that make IFEC the vibrant segment of cabin service that it is. Some of the companies are small startups, while others are the deep-pocket worldwide players that are shaping the passenger experience. With that evolution has come a change in how the IFE is being viewed within the airline industry. In his keynote address September 15 in Anaheim, Edward Shapiro, Partner and Vice President of PAR Capital Management, said IFE is no longer the “necessary evil” that low cost carriers
The service is part of the Gogo Vision platform launched a couple years ago. Gogo Vision gives airline customers the ability to target content to selected parts of the aircraft. Most Delta passengers should have little problem working through the selection of programming, says Steve Nolan Director of Communications and Public Relations at the Itasca, Illinois based Gogo. Much of the system follows closely the models found on most home video cable systems and providers such as Netflix. Gogo sees the real possibilities for inflight connectivity coming with additional capabilities that are on the horizon. “The biggest thing for Gogo’s evolution for us is focusing on bringing more bandwidth and capacity to the plane,” said Nolan. In the past year, satellite and ground service have increased the bandwidth available onboard the aircraft from three megabytes per second (MBS) to more than 10MBS. The next generation of capability will be Gogo’s Ground to Orbit system that will combine satellite antennas and ground service into a hybrid that will push that capacity to 70 MBS. In the future, aircraft compatible with spot beam satellite technology promise delivery of 100MBS. “We expect that will change things and unlock all different products and services that you can not only offer passengers, but more importantly the types of things that can engage airlines from an operational perspective,” said Nolan.
Delta launched its Delta Studio program on more than 1,000 aircraft this summer
www.pax-intl.com | PAX INTERNATIONAL | 17
IFE AND CONNECTIVITY: EVOLUTION OF IFE Among the capabilities Nolan citied was real time credit card transaction tracking to alleviate some of the risk of inflight purchasing for the airline. Flight attendants would also be able to perform passenger services such as luggage tracking and rebooking. Gogo was making headlines at this year’s APEX/IFSA Expo with the announcement that Vietnam Airlines had selected the company to supply connectivity services on its fleet of 787s and A350s and Virgin Atlantic which will be outfitted with its 2Ku solution. Gogo also announced a new partnership with telecom company T-Mobile that would deliver complementary inflight texting and voicemail to Gogo-equipped U.S. carriers. The availability started September 17. Even as the U.S. Federal Communications Commission continues to review comments on the possible future of mobile phone usage inflight, the rest of the world has been moving ahead from the Southeast Asia, the Middle East to Europe. This past summer, AeroMobile reported a 30% increase in connected aircraft during the first half of this year, with the calling service flying on more than 250 aircraft on across 13 airlines. Usage in the first half of 2014 on the AeroMobile system is also up compared to the same period in 2013, with data seeing the highest uptake of 313% and the number of inflight texts increasing by 48%. Connections to the AeroMobile network are up 56% to just over three million connections. AeroMobile closely monitors the types of usage for its system, and the company’s CEO Kevin Rogers tells PAX International that voice telephone calls only account for approximately 20% of the usage, with the service dominated by data and text services. AeroMobile is a subsidiary of Panasonic Avionics, which is responsible for the equipment and engineering on the AeroMobile service. The capability of the system will start to expand next year from a 2.5G to a 3G network, and provides strong coverage throughout the cabin, said Rogers. Down the road, there will inevitably be an increase in capability that would allow a 4G network within the aircraft. AeroMobile is also looking into a future that continues to see greater acceptance and installations across the airline industry. Airlines could do much to advance this evolution by making the services more known to passengers, said Rogers. Over time, he said as the awareness grows, so, 18 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
too will the usage. “In an environment where we are all accustomed to not being able to use phones, now that environment is changing; it takes a bit of time,” he said.
The tablet revolution Skycast Solutions is an example of one of the new entrants that is adapting existing technology and consumer products to the aircraft. The Seattle company was formed in 2011 by Bill Boyer, the inventor of the digEplayer, and has since picked up a customer in Calgary-based WestJet for its TrayVu 7 IFE device, which utilizes a Samsung Galaxy tablet. More than 2,000 devices are currently in operation on WestJet. “Skycast is all about bringing the tablet revolution to the cabin,” said Greg Latimer, a former Alaska Airlines executive who is President of Skycast Solutions. The company is in the midst of its next venture, which it is developing with partner Microsoft. The new portable IFE device will incorporate a Toshiba ‘Encore 2’ 8-inch tablet and Microsoft’s Windows 8.1 operating system. “It is going to be a very robust portable, because of the capabilities of the Windows operating system and an application custom-built for IFE,” said Latimer. “So it is going to allow the user to do things like multi-task. You can do things like listen to music and read a digital magazine at the same time. The new offering will also allow customers to connect seamlessly with onboard server driven content and Wi-Fi Internet on any platform currently flying. The other portion of the company’s business is the company’s TabCaddy line of seatback attachments built to hold any tablet device now carried by passengers. The’ HighPocket ‘ version holds tablets and smartphones up to 10.1 inches and frees up the tray for food and beverage service. The HighPocket is built for seatbacks with high literature pockets. The ‘BarGrabber’ is designed for seats with sliding trays. In addition to securely holding any handheld device on the market, Skycast Solutions built the TabCaddy for easy installation. Airlines also have the ability to
One version of the SkyCast TabCaddy line
interchange printed material, which opens up the possibility for advertising space on the devices.
The Big Players The “big three” of IFE hardware suppliers have spent the year honing partnerships made through acquisition and reshaping the landscape by capitalizing on the new capability. “The acquisition of LiveTV provided Thales with a solid regional Ka-Band connectivity solution and product line that will move Thales into market segments it has traditionally not played in,” said Lori Krans, a spokesperson for the company. The newly acquired company, purchased this year from JetBlue Airways, will give Thales additional research and development capability. As technology advances, Krans said it would be the responsibility of companies like Thales to demonstrate the value connectivity brings to an airline cabin for both the passenger and operational side. “We have entered a new phase with robust connections,” she said. Thales is in the midst of rebranding its connectivity solution and visitors to this year’s APEX event will probably receive the first glimpse. Rockwell Collins has found a new partner to the east for its PAVES® on-demand inflight entertainment system. Among several announcements in Anaheim was word that Rockwell Collins is working with Chinese seat maker Hubei Al Jiatai. The companies have signed a Memorandum of Understanding for technical offerability of the narrowbody PAVES® system on next generation 737s. “As China’s airline industry rapidly expands, so will the demand for reliable,
IFE AND CONNECTIVITY: EVOLUTION OF IFE easy to maintain IFE systems,” said Greg Irmen, Vice President and General Manager of Flight Controls and Information Systems at Rockwell Collins. Over the years, Rockwell Collins has modified PAVES® into a seat-centric product designed to prevent multi-seat disruptions. The changes in the system allow for easy removal of the seatback screen which helps reduce an airline’s operating cost. Toward the end of this year’s Aircraft Interior Expo in Hamburg, Panasonic Avionics announced its partnership with the Swiss company Soundchip SA for a collaboration to develop a new HD-AUDIO™ headset. SoundChip is a developer of wearable sound technology and developed a technology and a product called HighDefinition Personal Audio. “Audio isn’t a top tier topic in the industry, which we are trying to change as we see a lot of room for enhancements in that area,” said Matthias Walther, Manager Integrated Marketing, Corporate Sales and Marketing. Interest from potential airline customers are those who want to “push the envelope” in the premium product
Panasonic worked with a Swiss company, SoundChip to develop its new audio system
segment, he added. HD-AUDIO™ delivered through a specially designed digital headset connected to an airline’s inflight entertainment system through a standard USB port. Software in the seat controls would allow passengers to better control listening through controls embedded in a touch-panel display. Through the technology, common audio occurrences, such as clicks, pops and interference are eliminated. Other features include the ability to support active noise cancellation, digital surround sound and
wide-band voice telephony. At the time of the announcement, Panasonic was actively pursuing headset vendors interested in developing and manufacturing HD-AUDIO™ for airline use. Given that the technology for HDAUDIO™ is in the headset and not the systems, the product would be available for airlines with Panasonic’s X series systems now flying. “Focus for HD-AUDIO™ is on eX1 and eX3 but system requirements don’t go beyond a ‘slave’ USB port with adequate driver,” said Walther.
www.pax-intl.com | PAX INTERNATIONAL | 19
IFE AND CONNECTIVITY: HIGH SPEED BROADBAND
PULLING IN THE SIGNAL With high-speed broadband in demand, one of the key components, the aircraft antenna at the top of the fuselage, is also top of mind among IFEC suppliers by RICK LUNDSTROM
rom the outside, the radome of a modern aircraft is a sleek-looking structure, molded tight to the top fuselage and seemingly innocuous to a casual observer. The radome is a weatherproof enclosure designed to be transparent to satellite signals and radio waves. Beneath the radome is is an antenna responsible for critical communication that must be protected from extreme elements. While the system works to pull in signals from far away, the cockpit communicates with control towers and passengers enjoy the entertainment and communication at broadband Internet speeds that they are used to receiving under their own roof. In recent years, money and hours of testing have been invested and hours of testing before one of the newest offerings starts to pull in signals from satellites that ring the earth, many of them tens of thousands of miles away. Among the demands by airlines is to create a radome and antenna that is sleeker than the predecessor. The products of that toil were on display at this year’s APEX/IFSA Expo, where radome and antennas were seen at four stands. Suppliers of the systems also took home two awards from judges in the annual Avion Awards. One of those winners was General Dynamics, the Charlotte North Carolina company that two years ago won the contract to supply a tri-band radome and antenna to support the communication and entertainment system for LiveTV. The tri-band antenna can process signals on the K, Ka and Ku bands, commonly used for broadband Internet and streaming entertainment aboard aircraft.
20 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
The partnership with LiveTV, now owned by Thales, earned General Dynamics the Newcomer of the Year in the annual Avion Awards. Another Award winner was Exede in the Air inflight Internet System from ViaSat, which claimed the award for Best Achievement in Technology. This past summer, the Carlsbad, California company successfully tested a new radome and antenna with the capability of switching between Ku and Ka band satellites aboard a 757-200. ViaSat was seeking validation for a concept that borrows heavily from mobile telephones. Equipped with the ViaSat system, the antenna roams the satellite network, searching for the best available service among the Ka or Ku bands. ViaSat will be turning its attention to a new customer, and the first one outside the U.S. — El Al Israel Airlines. As part of the agreement, ViaSat is responsible for providing and managing a complete inflight Internet service to the aircraft, including airborne terminals, antennas, radomes, and air time from the Eutelsat Ka-SAT high-capacity Ka-band satellite. IFE and connectivity giant Panasonic has taken another approach. At this year’s APEX Expo, the company unveiled its new product developed with the help of the Boeing Network Systems. The phased-array antenna is both lightweight and low profile, built for the company’s eXConnect broadband inflight Internet service. The low profile feature on the Panasonic antenna sets the radome two inches above the fuselage. Panasonic says the changes in the antenna promises up to a 65% reduction in both weight and drag, while maintaining
Don Buchman, ViaSat’s director of mobile broadband with a prototype of the company’s Ku and Ka band antenna
connection speeds. The resulting savings could be thousands of dollars per aircraft per year. Panasonic plans to have the antenna available for the commercial aircraft market by the fourth quarter of 2016. In April of this year, Gogo announced the next step in its global connectivity efforts, with its 2Ku antenna. The 2Ku also offers a low profile on the aircraft that would deliver up to 70 megabytes per second at peak efficiency through the use of two Ku-band satellite antennas. The advantages of such an approach are significant, says Gogo. The use of the two Ku-band antennas increases efficiency, which allows more bandwidth for less cost. The low profile (4.5 inches) and dual Ku-band antennas will be particularly beneficial to airlines operating in tropical regions where other satellite products degrade because of the high skew angles. When more reliable spot beam satellites become available, Gogo says speeds could increase up to 100 megabytes per second. Gogo plans to have the new service available in mid-2015 aboard Virgin Atlantic Airways.
David Bruner Vice President at Panasonic Avionics Corporation with the company’s new low-profile antenna and radome
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INTERIORS: FLOORING Cooper Standard’s flooring material is routinely measured for its structure
FORWARD FLOORING Technological advancements on the aircraft flooring front are on the rise, and the manufacturers and suppliers responsible for said innovation show no signs of slowing down by MELISSA SILVA
he flooring of an aircraft encompasses far more capabilities than one might imagine when stepping onto a plane. Over the years several technological advancements have been incorporated into the design and manufacturing process, rendering the ground upon which passengers stand more intelligent than ever before.
Under the surface Making aircraft flooring as level and smooth as possible has become a priority for many airlines today. Airbus recently addressed this priority with the development of the highly regarded ‘flat floor’ of its A350 XWB. When designing the A350 XWB, Airbus had identified that only a wired in-flight entertainment (IFE) system could deliver the quality of service and viewing comfort expected by both the airlines and passengers. This meant that the cabin floor structure had to be designed to accommodate the space and raceways for wires, and those of other systems. “As they were endorsed right from the very beginning of the aircraft development, these requirements could be fully taken into account, and our design office made it happen,” says Patrick Candelier, Customer Affairs, Cabin Services and Marketing at Airbus. According to Candelier, passenger com-
fort was one of the top priorities considered when developing the flat floor for the A350 XWB. “Paradoxically, an IFE system not only conditions passengers’ viewing comfort, but also contributes to passengers’ seating comfort,” he says. “Cast your mind back to the first AVOD (Audio Video On Demand) systems, when several IFE boxes were like ‘tower PCs’ stored along the seat legs, totally invading passenger legroom — the quality of IFE in seat integration is instrumental to passenger seating comfort.” At the same time Airbus made in-seat IFE boxes invisible to the passenger, it decided to also hide seat-to-seat cables. “All the IFE ‘machinery’ is thus behind the scenes, leaving visible only what matters for the passenger — their touch screen, and optionally their touch screen passenger control unit, plugs and connectors for their own devices,” Candelier adds. Regardless of the class in which the passenger is seated on the A350 XWB, the result will be the same — he or she will rest their feet on a truly flat floor, free of the usual bump that seat rail covers produce, over which passengers used to stumble when accessing their seat. “This [also] means that passenger damage will be reduced to a minimum both for the covers, but also for the seat-toseat cable connectors at the seat level,” Candelier says.
Lighting the way
The A350 XWB flat floor as it appears in both business and in economy class
22 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
Embedded lighting is one of several innovations that have changed the landscape of aircraft flooring and in such a way that it has become integral for passenger safety in the event of an emergency. Carpet manufacturer and supplier of carpet tile and broadloom, Desso has taken
lighting integration one step further with the Philips/Desso Luminous Carpets™, an innovation the company developed with Dutch technology company, Philips. The Philips/Desso Luminous Carpet™ combines LED lighting with carpet technology. Desso is currently working on bringing the carpet into airports, where it can be used as a guiding and informational tool, assisting passengers with standard tasks like finding a gate, and also in the event of an emergency, much like it would be used on board an aircraft. “The Philips/Desso Luminous Carpet™ has provided a unique carpet tile, suitable for offices, schools, public spaces and airports, and we are now working on finding a way to bring it onto aircraft,” says Roland Jonkhoff, Managing Director, Desso. “You can incorporate a number of functions into flooring — you can make the floor intelligent. That’s where Desso will be in the next few years. The idea is to be able to walk onto the aircraft with my ticket in hand and the floor will read my ticket and show me the way to my seat,” Jonkhoff adds. Desso designs and manufactures its innovative flooring with a focus on health and wellbeing. The company is fully committed to making the transition to a circular economy, powered by Cradle to Cradle® principles. Case in point: KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. Last year, Desso introduced new carpets for KLM’s new business class that incorporates two Cradle to Cradle® aspects: sustainable, chemical-free wool and the material from old KLM crew uniforms. “Firstly, the wool we use — we can trace its entire history; we know exactly where it comes from, that the sheep have been treated humanely and how it has been cleaned among other things,” explains Jonkhoff. “Secondly, the blue spots in the KLM carpet are created by using the old KLM uniforms. The uniforms are recycled in such a way, that we use them in the yarn to create the blue spots in the carpet,” he adds. Desso has also developed the FuelMaster®, a new, lightweight carpet range that is approximately 500 grams lighter than the standard aircraft carpet, creating annual fuel savings equal to US$10,000 on a 737 or A320, as well as a carpet featuring a selfadhesive backing, the latter having been designed specifically in collaboration with Boeing for its 787 Dreamliner. “We have the self adhesive backing which complies with the requirements of the 787, but we’ve also introduced a lighter
FLOORING version that can be placed under any of our carpet and used in any other type of aircraft,” says Jonkhoff. According to Jonkhoff, a problem often encountered when replacing carpet on an aircraft, is that the tape used for installation will begin to lose its adhesive strength, resulting in the aircraft having to add more, “fresh” tape. “If you replace the carpet two or three times, you end up with a lot of tape on your aircraft, which equals to a lot of extra weight,” he explains. “What we have developed is a special self-adhesive that adheres to the carpet side, stronger than it would on the aluminum side. So you can easily replace
DESSO’s FuelMaster® carpet range is approximately 500 grams lighter than the standard aircraft carpet
it, easily pull it off, leaving no substance whatsoever on the aircraft, subsequently leaving behind a clean aluminum base upon which you can install your carpet again,” Jonkhoff adds.
Safety first Of all the innovations companies are incorporating into aircraft flooring today, those that are safety-related are scoring high with both airlines and passengers. Cooper Standard headquartered in Novi, Michigan, supplies systems and components for the automotive, commercial vehicle, aviation and select industries. Products include sealing and trim, fuel and brake delivery, fluid transfer, thermal and emissions and anti-vibration systems, all of which meet high safety standards. On the floor front, Cooper’s DUROseries, consisting of DUROFLOOR® — a two layer glass-fiber laminate backing bonded to a rubber-based toplayer — and DUROFLEX® — a lightweight NTF with essentially the same construction as DUROFLOOR®, but with only one layer of glass-fiber laminate for more flexibility — rank high when it comes to safety, both meeting the most stringent flammabil-
ity, smoke and toxic requirements in the industry. “While creating the DURO-series, resisting fire hazards was of course one of our top priorities,” says Henrik Jetter, Business Manager - Aviation and Industrial Products at Cooper Standard. “We are the only aircraft flooring producer that has expelled halogen and vinyl (PVC) from our products in order to maximize the safety of the passengers even further. Our second target was to increase the durability of the product. To prevent the floor from tearing is our greatest achievement in this regard,” Jetter adds. In addition to the Duro-series, Cooper will also display a new fast-curing silicon sealant, FLOORSIL®FCS (Fast Curing System), at the Aircraft Interiors Expo in Seattle. FLOORSIL®FCS reduces time while installing NTF in the aircraft. Whether to provide a flat and unencumbered surface upon which a passenger can stand or rest their feet, direction in the event of an emergency, or the reassurance that various safety standards have been met, aircraft flooring is offering passengers more than initially meets the eye — or foot.
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www.pax-intl.com | PAX INTERNATIONAL | 23
INTERIORS: SEATING Front section of the Acro Aircraft Seating Ultra XC
BATTLE Aircraft are rolling off the assembly lines at the two major airframe companies, and the companies that make seating products are trying a variety of methods to lure potential customers by RICK LUNDSTROM
hat is a passenger buying when he or she completes an online transaction granting them time aboard an
aircraft? For the airline, the passenger is buying a destination or a service. However, com-
panies that make airline seating may see it differently. Chris Brady, Managing Director of Acro Aircraft Seating in London, sees a passenger purchasing rectangular space roughly 19 inches wide and 30 inches long and as high as the luggage bins. “That is your living space, and that is
what you are buying from the airline,” Brady tells PAX International. “We try to use as little of it for the seats as possible.” It is a marvel in and of itself that with such tight restrictions, companies like Acro and others are creating products that even from the outside seem different in many ways. However, that is the way the market has responded to the wide variety of airlines, all with different philosophies for meeting the demands of their passengers. One thing is certain, the market for cabin products like seating is stronger than it has been for many years. In the assembly lines of Boeing and Airbus, upwards of 40 narrowbody 737s and A320s are rolling into service each month, many bound for the low-cost carrier markets in Asia. This is creating demand for seating that is being met by longtime players, such as Recaro, and relative newcomers, several of which will be showing products at this year’s Aircraft Interiors Expo Americas in Seattle. “I would say the market is booming,” says Rodolfo Baldascino, Marketing and Sales Manager for at the Aircraft Division Geven, an Italian aircraft seating company. “I would say the competition is booming as well.” Geven will be one of the companies exhibiting in Seattle, bringing along its line of economy and business class seating. Recently Geven sold its Comoda business class seat for the new front cabin product for flydubai. The airline has a 737-800 fleet and the Comoda, with signature Italian leather and color palette, accommodating flydubai’s desire for front-cabin luxury, which supports the seat-centric AVOD system from Lumexis. Deliveries of the Comoda will continue until the airline’s fleet is completely retrofitted toward the end of next year.
Italian seat maker Geven will be bringing its line of seats to AIX Americas. The newest is its Piuma Evo economy class seat. Its Comoda business class seat is aboard flydubai, among other airlines
24 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
INTERIORS: SEATING Deliveries of the Comoda for the A320 fleet of South African Airways also continue to roll out. By the end of 2016, the Comoda will be installed on 16 of the airline’s A320s. South African has also selected Geven’s Piuma seat for its economy class. Geven has been selling aircraft seating since the mid-1990s, and its products are now flying with airlines on five continents. The company is in the product catalog for Airbus and ATR as well as the Alenia Superjet 100. In the next year, Baldascino said the company would be launching a new economy class seat that will debut at next year’s Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg. In Seattle, visitors will see an improved version of its Piuma economy class seat. The new Piuma Evo is a lighter version of the original that Geven designed to meet the needs of low cost carriers in high-density routes. The company has incorporated composite and aluminum components into the design of the Piuma Evo.
Looking toward Asia Recaro Aircraft Seating GmbH has been taking the initiative to expand its production facilities for the past several years. After plant expansions in Poland, Germany and South Africa in 2012, the company more than doubled the size of its Dallas/ Fort Worth plant to 23,000 square meters. Toward the end of last year, Recaro opened a new green field manufacturing plant in Qingdao, China just 10 months after breaking ground. Recaro has opened a sales office in Dubai and invested €3 million (US$3.8 million) in the company’s site in Schwaebisch Hall, Germany to manufacture components for greater flexibility and speed. Speed is important in an industry that is known for long lead times between order and delivery. Demand is no greater than among the Asian airlines keen to expand. “We are negotiating projects with more than 20 airlines in China,” said Dr. Mark Hiller, Chief Executive Officer of Recaro Seating. “Beyond the Chinese market, a number of customers in the Asia-Pacific region have expressed a strong interest in our products.” The Qingdao plant currently produces the company’s BL3520 economy class seat. Production of the seat has been primarily for Shandong Airlines with approximately 3,400 units bound for its fleet of 21 737s. Hiller says Recaro plans to gradually adapt the plant to offer the complete Recaro
product portfolio from the Qingdao plant to the Asian market. Like most of its competitors, the retrofit market will be an important one going forward. Airbus and Boeing are both offering derivatives of existing aircraft, such as the A320NEO and the 737 Max. “The airline customers are pushing for new seating products for these new aircraft, which will then also be reviewed and partially requested for the remaining and existing fleet,” said Hiller. “The reasoning is different, but one main reason is to have product commonality throughout all cabins.” The low-cost carrier customers could also be in the market for other products in the Recaro line. Four years ago, Air France purchased the company’s SL3510 for its domestic fleet of A319s, A320s and A321s. Since then, easyJet has also selected the seat, which sits passengers in what Hiller called a “pre-defined recline” of 15 degrees. Recaro has incorporated a number of features in the SL3510 designed for optimum comfort for short periods. The seat’s aluminum frame is covered with netting that adapts to a passenger’s spinal column. Recaro has also modified the headrests and manufactured a super-slim contour into the design for passengers to have more living space and shin clearance. “Our ergonomic specialists are investigating ingenious design solutions to improve the benefits for economy class passengers,” said Hiller. “As we not only design economy class seats but also business class seats, we will be able to intensively use synergy effects.”
Beauty in simplicity As general manager of product development at the launch of Virgin Atlantic Airways, Chris Brady spent years immersed in elements of the airline’s service product. In the early days, Brady was responsible for products that touched the passenger, from blankets and pillows, all the way through to seats, entertainment, premium class bars and drive-through check-in. In the 10 years he worked for the airline he spent a lot of time looking at seating. Now, as one of the founders of Acro Aircraft Seating, Brady takes a distinctively philosophical approach that unites form and function in the passenger space. “We believe that as far as seats are concerned, less is more and comfort is actually the absence of discomfort, and the most comfortable position is the next one,” he declares.
The SL3510 seat from Recaro, which is in use on easyJet
When an A319 from Spirit Airlines or another low-cost carrier is outfitted with one of the company’s Superlight Fixed, Ultra Fixed or Ultra recline, the pitch may be roughly the same as it is on legacy airlines such as American. However, a significant difference is the thin profile of the Acro seats and the way the product is manufactured, not just for less weight, but also for comfort, sturdiness and ease of maintenance and quick delivery. The backrest of the Acro seat is a thin composite molding that flattens out across the shoulders and is constructed at enough of an angle to allow the passengers to recline slightly and receive lumbar support. Though the seat may only have half an inch of padding, elements within the construction give passengers a comfortable spot for a short trip. “I hope sense will prevail, and we will all go to fixed back seats for short haul,” Brady said. Brady sees parallels in the design of Acro seats similar to fine office furniture, such as the iconic Eames chair and molded plastic furniture often found in schools. While simple in design, they complete a function with few parts and little duplication and layering. The philosophy appears to have paid off. In addition to SpiritAirlines, Acro has found 20 or so other customers including Thomas Cook and KLM CityHopper, and demand for products is pushing the plant near Gatwick Airport to a capacity of 24,000 seats per year. In the next nine months, Brady said Acro would outfit more than 70 aircraft to four new U.S. customers. www.pax-intl.com | PAX INTERNATIONAL | 25
INTERIORS: TE CONNECTIVITY
TE Connectivity’s re-introduction of the Mil Qualified field tactical interface of M83526/20 and /21 and the CeeLok FAS-X High Speed interconnect system for matched impedance
TE Connectivity continues to meet the increasing connectivity challenges with new products and innovative solutions by MELISSA SILVA
ing to deliver an extraordinary customer tion in new designs and upgrades. Of the many industries TE Connectivexperience in the process. “TE Connectivity is a fantastic place to ity caters to, the Aerospace Defense and work with products and solutions that are Marine business unit — which exists critical connectivity components within within its Industrial Solutions group — our customer’s end-products — products represents US$1 billion of the company’s and solutions that enhance virtually all overall total corporation, which has a total aspects of our daily lives,” says Earle Olson, worth of US$13 billion. “This group provides products and soluConnectivity, Global Aerospace, Defense and Marine, Business Development Man- tions for rugged applications in Aerospace, ager - High Speed / Bandwidth Solutions. Defense and Marine market segments,” Leading up to this year’s Aircraft Interiors Expo in Seattle, TE Connectivity has launched several new innovations, including its Rugged Fiber Optic termini, which is inclusive of the new PRO BEAM EB16 expanded beam size 16 termini for peak performance in rugged fiber optic TE Connectivity’s CeeLok FAS-X connector offers 10GB/s systems that are “built to data delivery responding to the emergent trend of increased survive.” performance demand, while reducing size, weight and power consumption in new designs and upgrades Also new from the company is the re-introduction of the Mil Qualified field tactical interface explains Olson. The product solutions Olson refers to of M83526/20 and /21 and the CeeLok FAS-X High Bandwidth interconnect include electrical interconnects, wire and system for matched impedance. The Cee- cable, relays, contactors, mil circular and Lok FAS-X connector meets military and rectangular connectors, sealed harness assemblies, “inside-the-box” and board-to-board applica“TE Connectivity is a fantastic place to tions. work with products and solutions that are T E C on n e c t iv it y a l s o critical connectivity components within recently acquired the SEAour customer’s end-products.” CON Group, including Seacon Phoenix, which came after it – Earle Olson, Global Aerospace, Defense and Marine, Business acquired L.L. Rowe Company Development Manager - High Speed / Bandwidth Solutions. and DEUTSCH. “[These acquisitions] have extended aerospace markets’ 10 Gbps requirements that are linked to the emergent trend of our business into the subsea interconnect increased performance demand, while solutions family for offshore oil and gas as reducing size, weight and power consump- well as marine applications,” adds Olson.
or more than 50 years, TE Connectivity has provided engineered electronic components for consumer and industrial products, network solutions and systems for telecommunications and energy markets, undersea telecommunication systems and specialty products. When it comes to the commercial aerospace industry — which the company has been serving since 1941 — TE Connectivity focuses heavily on solving challenging aircraft design problems and delivering increasingly lighter weight solutions for customer applications. TE Connectivity serves several commercial aerospace markets including, business jets, commercial transports, general aviation aircraft, regional aircraft and very light jets. Looking specifically at its Global Aerospace, Defense and Marine business, TE Connectivity focuses on bringing to life the promise of commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) along with size, weight and power (SWaP) by accessing its engineering and design resources for solutions that work in harsh environments, improving upon the customers’ end products and striv-
26 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
CABIN SERVICE: APPETIZERS AND ACCOMPANIMENTS
To the skies with
complements by TANYA FILIPPELLI
ppetizers are increasingly becoming gourmet starter courses. Often served hot or cold, starters may include savory canapés, seafood hors d’oeuvres and vegetarian samplers on long-haul flights. Customer feedback indicates appetizers and assorted starter dishes set the tone for a flight and PAX International highlights the companies and suppliers who aim to provide a memorable passenger experience with their starter creations inflight.
Sharing the OLOVE
When PAX International recently asked Matt Hunt to share his recipe for success for his olive company, he replied, “simple ingredients, simple packaging, simply olovely!” “My wife Hayley and I met in Barcelona in 2001 and it was love at first bite when we decided to start an olive company,” he said. After living in Spain for several years, the couple has recently returned to the U.K. with two children onboard to grow the business, lovingly named, OLOVES.
ment with your equip succ t h ess g i l f in m n ind I .
From Design to Reality
OLOVES’ selection of green and black olives
OLOVES provides freshly packed olives in a range of marinated flavors that are offered in single serve packets. According to Hunt, “small is the new big.” “Single servings and smaller amounts are more pleasurable, healthier and more sustainable for everyone,” said Hunt. While the Mediterranean classic, Basil and Garlic is OLOVES’ bestselling flavor, the company also offers Lemon and Rosemary marinated olives described as simple, clean and fresh. The Chili and Oregano flavor, which Hunt refers to as “a wowser of a taste profile,” features fresh olives seasoned with chili, garlic and oregano. The company’s latest flavoring is Chili and Garlic with black olives, all bathing in a spicy harissa. “They’re high in loveliness and really low in calories,” stated Hunt. “No stones, no fuss. Just the best snack going!” Recently made available on Norwegian Air Lines and Eurostar trains, the savory snacks can also be found throughout the U.K., the U.S. and Europe, mainly in the airline and travel sectors. OLOVES continues to add to it product range and has recently launched new offerings to the airline market, including 100% fruit snacks Fruity Pies, and DIPIN all natural bruschetta and hummus dips. “In our company we all love to try new things and see new brands,” Hunt told PAX International. “We believe that being unique and different is what will keep our brand fresh and timeless.” The company is currently creating another product line that is sure to be just as fresh. According to Hunt, appetizers and accompaniments are about “tantalizing the taste buds and experiencing new sensations.” “An appetizer is not just something to eat, it is something to savor and enjoy; and what better place than 30,000 feet in the air!” added Hunt.
A perfect PARTNER
We Make it Happen Bringing the Power of Global Partnerships to Work for You! RMTGlobalPartners.com
Since the 1992 debut of its toasted sesame cracker, Seattlebased company PARTNERS has been supplying top selling artisanal crackers to the airline industry. “It was 22 years ago this November that my mother, Marian Harris, decided to test the retail market with a home baked cracker we had been making in our restaurant for years,” explained Cara Figgins, Vice President at PARTNERS. www.pax-intl.com | PAX INTERNATIONAL | 27
CABIN SERVICE: APPETIZERS AND ACCOMPANIMENTS The company’s cracker originally was offered as an accompaniment with its homemade soups and salads, according to Figgins. “There wasn’t a cracker that was made with clean, wholesome ingredients like the rest of the food we were making,” explained Figgins. According to Figgins, Marian called the business, PARTNERS because the crackers were a perfect ‘partner’ for any food, “from peanut butter to pâté.” Inspired by its consumers, PARTNERS introduces new items each year. The company has added 60 additional products including top sellers, Wisecracker Roasted Garlic and Rosemary, and Olive Oil and Sea Salt, which are currently available throughout the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Asia.
SOUP’S ON KLM Royal Dutch Airlines has added soup as a first course option on its World Business Class menu. The vegetarian soup will be offered to passengers as an alternative option to the standard starter on the World Business Class menu. Soup is also included in the selection offered in World Business Class Express Service. “Research has shown that passengers appreciate a choice of starters,” said a release from KLM. “In tests on board where soup was served as an alternative to the standard first course, the passengers appreciated the standard starter more than on flights that offered no choice.” KLM uses seasonal products and has begun with yellow pepper soup, which is prepared fresh daily.
“The roasted garlic and rosemary really represents our values for quality ingredients,” stated Figgins. “We don’t take short cuts. We buy freshly peeled garlic and slow roast it ourselves. It tastes real, because it is real.” PARTNERS’ Free for ALL Kitchen gluten-free crackers and cookies are made from five ancient grains — amaranth, quinoa, millet, teff and sorghum — and casava flour. The product range is available in single serve portions, as well as retail and food service packs. The cookie thins have the same ingredient base along with dark Dutch cocoa and cane sugar. Ingredients used in the company’s extensive product range include those that are readily available in the marketplace, as well as those required for dietary needs, such as gluten intolerance. “When we developed this line of products we specifically chose to avoid the typical gluten free ingredients, so our products do not contain any rice, corn or soy ingredients,” Figgins explained. “At the core of what we do is quality and taste. We stay away from the ‘me too’ product development and try to bring a unique twist to the products we create.” PARTNERS aims to meet the needs of the travel industry by offering its products in several packaging formats. From single-serve pouches for deli boxes to stacked cracker products, the company designs its products for positioning in items like fruit and cheese platters where space may be limited. In addition, they provide a bulk food service pack that is offered in first class to pair with cheese and hummus appetizers. “Customers love quality snacks,” stated Figgins. “I think it makes passengers feel taken care of during their travel experience. They feel like they are getting more when they can be offered additional options. It upgrades the travel experience.” Olive Oil and Sea Salt crackers by PARTNERS
Wisecrackers Roasted Garlic with Rosemary by PARTNERS
PARTNERS’ Free For All Kitchen Olive Oil and Sea Salt crackers
28 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
CABIN SERVICE: INNOVATIVE COOKING ONBOARD
Innovation in the galley by RICK LUNDSTROM
Cuisine Solutions added a second production line to its plant in Sterling, Virginia
The newest in galley equipment requires high quality food products that can adapt to the specific needs of travel catering, and two companies are noting the shift and are supplying products accordingly
isit any event, such as this year’s Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg and a visitor will see attempts to meet airline demands for galley products that resemble more and more the interior of a suburban kitchen. With softened lines, and pops of color, a nod to fine design is replacing the engineered and industrial interiors of old. Passengers are increasingly drawn to this section of the cabin, and airlines want to make the space as pleasing as possible. At the same time, manufacturers are transforming the galley equipment into hightech boutique items that are versatile and easy to operate. On the mega ships that are rolling out of the shipyards, cruise lines are catering to a new generation of passengers who want to avoid the rush to the buffet or the main dining cabin, and instead, are willing to pay for the experience. Both these trends have meant new business for companies that supply both air and cruise lines with products. Recently, Cuisine Solutions, a producer of sous vide meals to both sectors, threw the switch on a second production line at the company’s newly opened plant in Sterling, Virginia in suburban Washington, DC. Fresh from the opening and forged partnership with Gate Gourmet, the year is shaping up to be a busy one for the company.
Cuisine Solutions has been selling the sous-vide (under vacuum) method to the transportation industry for several years. The slow cooking methods were pioneered by the company in the early 1970s and involve preparing entrées in water over low temperatures. Those same slow cooking methods are vital to the cruise industry at this stage in its rapid growth, said Gerard Bertholon, Chief Strategy Officer for Cuisine Solutions. The cooking process may take time, but most of that time is spent at the company’s plant. Simple preparation with sauces, plating with side dishes and presentation are among the primary tasks. “One of the best things about sous-vide is that you can reheat in all types of equipment,” said Bertholon. “As our sous-vide ingredients come fully cooked and pasteurized, the caterers do not need to do any further processes, but just assemble the dish/package specifically for the airlines.” Such versatility is important to the cruise lines as well. Cuisine Solutions’ business to the cruise lines has been growing continuously, said Bertholon. Not only have the sous-vide products been a good fit for the specialty restaurants, it has also helped cruise lines with a personnel issue that has been plaguing the transportation and hotel sectors: the lack of experienced line cooks.
Maintaining a brand standard, as cruise lines must these days, is a challenge when dealing with turnover and training. Cooks aboard cruise lines typically stay at sea for only five to seven months, said Bertholon. When the time is up, he says cruise lines are finding that an increasing number are not returning to the ship, but, instead to their home country. This revolving door requires constant training, and a product like sous-vide cooking that requires little preparation on the part of the staff, is a godsend for many cruise lines. These personnel issues are happening as cruise lines continue to ramp up their specialty restaurants in hopes of capturing a few more dollars from premium passengers who are becoming more sophisticated and demanding in their food and wine service. “Right now they want to raise the quality,” said Bertholon. “The business of cruise lines is really exploding and everybody is competing for those premium customers who are going to spend more money.” Bertholon likened the shift to luxury dining on cruise lines to what is taking place in another tourist haven: Las Vegas. For decades, the gambling city was known for all-night partying and inexpensive buffets. However in the past few years, top Michelin-starred chefs have discovered the city and are setting up restaurants.
Innovation for economy class
In the back cabin, and away from the spotlight, companies such as Green Gourmet have discovered the opportunities in supplying familiar fare that have been adapted for airline galleys. French fries, fish and www.pax-intl.com | PAX INTERNATIONAL | 29
CABIN SERVICE: INNOVATIVE COOKING ONBOARD The Deli-Q Croque Monsieur sandwich from Green Gourmet
chips and other comfort food have been a successful mix for the U.K. based company. Maja Strus-Vatovec, Brand Coordinator at Green Gourmet credits the ability to see the airlines space and efficiency requirements as the cause of this success. “Packaging is a really important part of what we do,” Strus-Vatovec said. “We work closely with airlines and adapt the packaging to meet the customers specific requirements of the different ovens they’re using onboard. Space efficiency is really important onboard so the products need to fit neatly and economically into an airline oven; they have to be easy to handle and quick to prepare.”
30 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
Green Gourmet supplies its products either partly cooked or fully baked. Before they reach the passenger, they are fully tested at a range temperatures before preparation instructions are passed onto the airline, which are in turn passed on to the flight attendants.
Green Gourmet’s “it’s just…” line recently found a new customer in British Airways
Each customer has different demand and different equipment, said StrusVatovec. So the challenge, she said, is for companies like Green Gourmet to understand how the customer operates. “From size of trays, which differ from airline to airline, to cooking temperatures and cooking times and making sure we are producing a great finished product for the passenger.”
CABIN SERVICE: TABLEWARE AND PLACE SETTINGS
plate With the standards for airline catering on the rise, the tableware upon which the meal itself rests is being placed under scrutiny, and suppliers are reacting accordingly
GIP’s “Ava” line (pictured) features soft yet square corners, making it ideal for use on meal trays
ny chef will say that in order for a guest to fully enjoy their meal, the presentation must be on par with the flavor of the food. For many chefs — and patrons alike — presentation is everything, and in most cases, it can make or break a meal. Whether in a restaurant on the ground, or in an aircraft above the clouds, one thing is certain when it comes to dining: the tableware must fit the bill. Adding to the importance of presentation is the fact that there are few distractions in the air — fewer than one would find when dining on the ground, resulting in the passenger’s focus placed solely on the food — and the subsequent plate — in front of them. This is something French culinary porcelain company REVOL Porcelain takes seriously when designing its tableware. “The passenger experience on board a flight is even more dedicated to the meal with fewer distractions than on a cruise or in a restaurant,” says Anne Valette, Vice President Sales and Marketing, REVOL. REVOL’s “Solid Sphere” bowls in black
“It is also important to mention that the aircraft passenger is very often alone, especially if it is a business traveler,” she adds. In Redmond, Washington, Global Inflight Products (GIP) feels the same about the significance of the quality and presentation of place settings. “The trend to create the overall ambiance and presentation is part of the inflight experience. We work closely with each of our clients to develop customized solutions, for all classes of service. We analyze the menu and options offered, and we identify the passengers’ profiles and their preferences in order to develop specific proposals to our clients,” says Paulina White, Marketing and Design Director, Global Inflight Products. Spanish-Chinese onboard products supplier, Kaelis understands the significance presentation holds when it comes to serving meals onboard, but also recognizes how the presentation heavily depends on the food itself. “A frame most definitely can enhance a picture,” says Manoj Pridhanani, Design Manager, Kaelis. “Our objective is to provide the best comfort for the passenger, and eating comfortably results in enjoyment. However, the food must speak for itself too. Whilst designing crockery and other tableware products we work with the airline to study their menu and that is where it all begins,” Pridhanani adds.
While meal presentation is integral to passenger enjoyment, airlines are not limited to the most costly of tableware options. Rather, according to Sola Airline Cutlery, items like cutlery do not have to be the most expensive to be the most appealing. “We believe it is not necessary for
a cheap product to look cheap. This is where Sola puts in a lot of effort to make sure a nice design is available at a similar cost to that of cheaply produced flatware. Low price does not automatically mean a cheap looking end product,” explains Hans Engels, Export Manager, Sola Airline Cutlery. When it comes to quality, Engels’ opinion does not stand alone. There tends to be the common misconception that lightweight materials are of low quality, when in reality — especially on board an aircraft — this couldn’t be further from the truth. The initiative taken to reduce weight onboard has led to the use of unique materials, none of which compromise quality, a point that GIP couldn’t agree more with. “The perception of light weight is changing in all arenas and industries, from inflight products to cell phones to airplanes,” explains White. “The trend is actually reversing and a new pattern is being created: higher quality equates to lighter weight,” she adds. Engels feels that many passengers believe that if something is big and heavy the quality is also superior. “We have put a lot of effort into making cutlery pieces where the originals are indeed heavy, and recreate that into a thinner/lighter version, without damaging the original design. Plus, we have developed a variation of typical airline designs that are light to begin with, but are very stylish and have nothing to do with a thick/heavy original,” he adds. The level of quality is often determined by the class in which the items are being used; however, quality is not completely disregarded when outfitting the economy class. “If you are talking about economy class, where [we see] the biggest volumes, combination is the key. [Kaelis’] engineers www.pax-intl.com | PAX INTERNATIONAL | 31
CABIN SERVICE: TABLEWARE AND PLACE SETTINGS
work with different materials, and combining [these materials] results in amazing discoveries,” explains Pridhanani. “Different metals combined with durable plastic for example, results in products that are light, but effective. There are other factors to consider, such as volume for airlines apart from weight and studying the properties of different materials, and their use allows us to create innovative AX_subform_halfad:Layout 1 31/03/10 11:29 AM Page 1 lightweight products with outstanding quality,” he continues.
Mind over material
Weight matters aside, there exists a plethora of materials to choose from when designing and manufacturing tableware, but only specific selections make the cut. For REVOL, top materials include porcelain and the company’s own porcelain clay. “Porcelain is and remains the healthiest material on the market to use in the oven and microwave. It contains no lead, cadmium nor any harmful and synthetic material,” says Valette. “REVOL clay is extremely durable due to its composition and firing temperature. We can develop any size and shape to
perfectly fit airline trays. We can control how much raw material to use for both lightness constraints and durability. The REVOL porcelain clay is extremely tight and compact ensuring no porosity and easy cleaning as well,” she adds. GIP sees the value in using porcelain, but also recognizes the benefits associated with using bone china, and in particular, the company’s own version. “Our new bone china is the most ideal material for the airlines to use for their inflight service,” says White. “This product exceeds our customers’ expectations with its beautiful crisp white color, its chip resistance and lightweight nature. The new look and style of creating combinations of porcelain with rotables in business class is definitely a leading industry trend,” she continues. When it comes to cutlery, things are slightly more complicated. “In general there are two types of steel that are used for the production of cutlery — either 18/10 chrome nickel steel or 18/0 chrome steel,” explains Engels. “Eighteen/10 steel is very corrosion resistant. Technically 18/0 is less corrosion
resistant, but price wise, it’s very interesting. However, if produced correctly, then 18/0 is a very good alternative; you can hardly see a difference between the material,” he adds. With the amount of detail that goes into preparing a plate — or meal tray — it almost seems like it is the food that needs to step up to the plate, not the tableware. From selecting the right quality and material for each class, to ensuring appropriate weight, more effort is put into the meal tray than one might think. So the next time a meal is served, a passenger might want to take a closer look before diving in.
Sola Airline Cutlery’s “Montreux” line of cutlery features an elegant and round style, making it easy to adjust in both size and length
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32 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
CABIN SERVICE: BEVERAGES AND REFRESHMENTS
The Flyhidrate system includes three distinct drinks: Boarding Pass, Cruise Control and Landing Gear, to be taken early, mid- and late flight, respectively
f you ask anyone in the airline services industry what their top priority is, more often than not the answer will be “passenger comfort.” Many things come to mind when thinking of keeping passengers comfortable, the most rudimental being a simple refreshment. Such offering has seemingly stood the test of time, whether on the ground or in the air. When a guest arrives, he or she is offered something to drink. In this respect, it is easily understood why the beverage component of inflight service has become so integral. In the more recent years, maintaining a passenger’s comfort has become more about arriving replenished than simply refreshed, something FlyFit has gone to great lengths to ensure. Designed to counteract the stressful effects of traveling, the FlyFit product line features healthy products — including beverages —made with a combination of superfruits that help to revitalize the body after travel. “Being in the air is always magical, but can be demanding at the same time. While our products help to reduce the impact of dry airplane environments, high altitude
and circumstances like time differences and dehydration, our products are also designed for all types of travel,” says Eric Veeneman, Co-Founder, FlyFit. Much like its vitamin shots, nutritional bars, yogurt and new sandwiches and muffins, FlyFit’s line of beverages feature various beneficial vitamins and minerals. New beverage flavors include apple and cherry, the latter to be launched in December.
With a history spanning more than 125 years, Coca-Cola knows a thing or two about providing refreshment. In the more recent years, that knowledge has found its way into the passenger services industry with several of Coca-Cola’s emerging beverage brands, like Smartwater, Dasani sparkling, illy coffee and honest tea. “Our focus [for the airline sector] begins with having the right brands and flavors available for passengers to enhance the onboard service experience. What our consumers are enjoying onboard falls into four primary beverage categories: Coca-Cola Sparkling, Seagram’s Mixers, Minute Maid Juice and Dasani or Aquarius Water,” explains Mark Spiwak, Sr. National Account Executive, Strategic Partnership Marketing, CocaCola North America. Coca-Cola’s sparkling beverage portfolio is exclusively available to passengers traveling on nine out of the top 10 North American Airlines. Currently, Coca-Cola has all four categories in addition to some of the emerging beverages available to passengers on board Delta, United, US Airways, Air Canada and Allegiant Airlines. In
Constant Comment, Bigelow’s very first tea, features a proprietary blend of black tea, rind of oranges and sweet spice
addition, the company has the sparkling category, plus one to two other categories on the rest of its affiliated airlines — American, Southwest, Alaska, Frontier, WestJet, Virgin America, Spirit, and Hawaiian. Of all the Coca-Cola products available in the passenger services segment, Dasani water and/or Aquarius water are served on most airlines, becoming the largest non-alcoholic beverage segment in terms of volume. Aside from the rudimentary desire for refreshment is the very critical need to maintain hydration while flying, something that became reienforced when the mother of David Spratley, Director of Flyhidrate, suffered a Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) scare. “This got me thinking about the inflight health issue and some research confirmed two fundamentals: firstly, there was a real need for a solution with many inflight health-related incidents being reported, and secondly, there was nothing on the market specifically addressing flyer wellbeing,” explains Spratley. The result of this research is a beverage system that focuses on the physiological stresses of long-distance flying — dehydration, poor circulation and oxidative stress caused by altitude. The beverage system includes three distinct drinks: Boarding Pass, Cruise Control and Landing Gear, to be taken early, mid- and late flight, respectively. “The Flyhidrate benefits come from several layers of functionality: a multi-electrolyte hydration base for better fluid absorption and retention than regular water, a proprietary blend of mild natural anticoagulants to counter increased blood viscosity and DVT, and a blend of ‘super antioxidants’ with support vitamins and minerals www.pax-intl.com | PAX INTERNATIONAL | 33
CABIN SERVICE: BEVERAGES AND REFRESHMENTS to counter free radical damage from increased radiation exposure,” Spratley elaborates. The three drinks have distinct flavors from the different formulations, which wasn’t an easy feat; developing pleasantly flavored drinks that also included the necesscary functional ingredients, presented a significant challenge. “The focus throughout has been on natural and safe ingredients over synthetics. We do plan new flavor profiles to avoid ‘flavor’ fatigue and our research and field trials confirmed what airline chefs now know: the taste profile changes at altitude and this has been a key consideration,” Spratley says.
Hydration aside, the basic purpose for offering a beverage is to provide comfort. While most beverages achieve this, a flavorful cup of tea has traditionally answered this need, which is why Bigelow Tea feels its presence in the passenger United Airlines is the first airline to services industry is crucial. offer passengers Dasani Sparkling water in the U.S. and abroad “I know from experience how exciting, yet tiring, travel can sometimes be,” says Cynthia Bigelow, President and CEO, Bigelow Tea. “Oftentimes, it’s a cup of tea that gets me back into focus. In fact, scientific studies have proven the natural L-Theanine in tea simultaneously calms
and sharpens the mind,” she adds. For 70 years and three generations, Bigelow Tea has been making tea. Currently available on United, Continental, American/US Airways, Hawaiian Airlines and Delta Air Lines, as well as Carnival, Princess, Holland America, Costa, MSC and Seaborne cruise lines, Bigelow’s tea bags are individually enclosed with a signature foil overwrap offering protection from air, moisture and surrounding aromas. Bigelow’s Home Blend, a ready-to-drink (RTD) tea, scheduled to launch in 2015, was designed specifically with polyphenols in mind — the powerful antioxidants naturally found in tea. “We wanted the finished product to have high level polyphenols and taste good, which complicated the formula, so we’re pleased that we ended up with a gorgeous tasting line that is 100% organic that has the same polyphenol [count] if not more than a cup of tea,” she explains. With a continuum of beverage choices at a passenger’s disposal today, maintaining hydration during travel is quite easy. So whether it is refreshment, revival or simply comfort one seeks, the airline trolley — or cruise line server — is the best place to start.
DANCING DEER During most flights, passengers are served a snack along with their beverage. Enjoying a biscuit with a cup of tea, or some pretzels with a soda works wonders when it comes to passenger comfort, a belief that Dancing Deer has followed for many years. Since 1999, Dancing Deer has been supplying the airline industry with individually wrapped gourmet brownies, squares and cookies — all made from scratch — for first class, buyon-board menus and full meal programs. With current trends leading to both sweet and savory flavor preferences, Dancing Deer’s recent collection of shortbread cookies satisfies both in one product. “The “sweet and savory” trend has been gaining momentum over the past year,” says Laura Stanton, Director of Marketing, Dancing Deer. The shortbread cookies carry a nine-month shelf life and are available in two-packs in the following flavors: Rosemary and Pink Sea Salt, Pure Vanilla Bean, Espresso Chocolate Chip, Kalamata Olive and Fig, Tangerine Cream Swirl and Sundried Tomato with Pine Nuts. Shortbread aside, Dancing Deer is expanding its successful line of Cookie Nibbles, a convenient 0.81-ounce, 100-calorie package of Kosher wafer-style cookies in a Sweet Apple flavor. Made in a peanut-free facility, Cookie Nibbles are available in Lemon, Chocolate Chip and Dark Chocolate flavors, and carry an nine-month shelf life.
Dancing Deer’s collection of shortbread cookies answers the “savory and sweet” trend with six flavors, including Rosemary and Pink Sea Salt (pictured)
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PARTNERSHIPS AND ACQUISITIONS Technology has made onboard sales easier and more lucrative for LSG Sky Chefs customer airlines Photo courtesy: LSG Sky Chefs
in profit T
racking the rapid growth of ancillary revenue over the past few years clearly shows the practice is moved far beyond a trend and taken on a priority that few would have spotted in the not so recent past. Looking across commercial aviation, ancillary revenue has shifted from a few programs by low-cost carriers to standard practice among the legacy carriers as well. Over the summer, two companies — Dublin-based CarTrawler and Shorewood, Wisconsin’s IdeaWorksCompany — completed an annual assessment that showed ancillary revenue among the world’s airlines in 2013 and found that globally, airlines derived more than US$31 billion from ancillary sales, an increase of more than 1,200% from the company’s first estimates in 2007. “Ancillary revenue has become so commonplace and such a necessary part of economics, that it has matured from a revolutionary state to something benignly called ‘a good business practice,’” said a report of the most recent spending estimates. Such large potential revenue cannot be ignored by airlines, nor is it. However, industry watchers such as Stefan Patermann, Vice President Business Development Strategy Europe at LSG Sky Chefs didn’t need to look across the sweep of commercial aviation for validation of ancillary revenue’s importance. He needed to only look at an imaginary passenger, he
Inflight retail is coming into its own as a source of airline revenue, but even big players like LSG Sky Chefs can use the expertise of specialized startups by RICK LUNDSTROM
calls “Mr. Jones” who is in seat 15C and whose name has popped up on a handheld device operated by flight attendants. “Mr. Jones sitting in seat 15C has ordered a fillet of beef and a glass of Merlot for his journey,” Patermann says in a scenario of a typical flight. “A waterproof camera from duty free to be delivered to his seat, and maybe he also needs a bus ticket to get him from the airport to his diving hotel in the coast.” To make all this happen for Mr. Jones, the airline needed a partner. To help handle the task of onboard revenue, LSG Sky Chefs also needed a partner and found one in Dublin-based Retail in Motion. The two companies have been working together on ancillary revenue solutions for more than a year. The partners have developed an onboard revenue management technology called Vector that allows
lines like Germanwings, Brussels Airlines, Europe Airpost and Sun Express. Patermann said by making the process easier for crew to sell, customers have seen their revenues increase. Since then, LSG Sky Chefs has added more customers for buy-on-board sales. In mid-September the company won a fiveyear contract to handle onboard sales for the low-cost-carrier Spirit Airlines, based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The contract covers onboard retail and catering that includes à-la-carte snacks, shelf-stable snack boxes and point of sale technology. Pat Berkelbaugh, LSG Sky Chef ’s Senior
“If the retail program is set up correctly, that is according to the passengers’ needs and expectations, it offers the passenger more choice and more chances to create an individual travel experience suited to their needs.” - Stefan Patermann, Vice President Business Development Strategy Europe at LSG Sky Chefs
airlines to manage all aspects of the inflight retail supply chain. Among the early customers for Vector were European airwww.pax-intl.com | PAX INTERNATIONAL | 35
PARTNERSHIPS AND ACQUISITIONS Vice President of Sales and Service for North America, called the contract “a milestone in our endeavor to position ourselves as the leader in the North American buy-on-board program.” Securing a contract for onboard sales with Spirit clearly is an important one for LSG Sky Chefs. The low-cost carrier is noted for its unbundling. Spirit Airlines’ ancillary fees made up 38.5% of its total revenue in 2012, according to the previous year’s report by IdeaWorksCompany. The following year, figures had dropped only slightly to 38.4% with total ancillary revenue pegged at US$51.22 million. Approximately 13% of that revenue is what IdeaWorksCompany termed “other items” that were not part of the airlines primary ancillary revenue sources, which included passengers’ usage changes, checked and carry-on bags, advanced seat selection and sale of frequent flier point miles.
Making it work onboard What LSG Sky Chefs relies on from its partner Retail in Motion is the right technology. With help from Retail in Motion, short notice changes are tracked effectively. If a passenger rebooks a flight, a preordered product must change in accordance to the passenger’s change of plans. Patermann said to track the unexpected, all the company’s services are web-based applications or apps. “Operationally, retail programs also have different needs,” he said. “For example, big kitchens often aren’t necessary. LSG Sky Chefs is therefore ready to set up efficient operations for the last mile.” Onboard, Patermann said it is critical for crew to make the right moves at the point of sale. That point can come before, during or after a flight is completed. A passenger needs to see possibilities for inflight meal sales, for example. After the flight, communication can continue with restaurant recommendations and vouchers at the holiday destination. To maximize sales, LSG Sky Chefs works closely with crew in intense training programs. Handheld devices have made it easier to complete and record onboard sales. Incentive and recognition programs have been an important motivator. In the future, Patermann sees changes and variations arising not only in what a passengers desires, but also how they go about purchasing. Preordering will be commonplace he says, opening up possibilities for a wider choice of meals and beverages. Duty free shopping will move 36 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
online offering a greater choice of products either bought from the seat or from home. “During a flight we see a growing connection between inflight sales and inflight entertainment,” Patermann said. “In the future, a passenger will be able to use their own mobile devices to not only watch films, listen to music and read the newspaper, but also make purchases onboard. This could be from ordering a coffee and a muffin to their seat to ordering a flat screen television to be delivered to their home.” Also in the future, the retail program between low-cost carriers and legacy airlines will become increasingly the same, said Patermann. However, there will as many different scenarios as there are
airlines themselves. If working well, an inflight retail program can result in both more revenue and a decrease in overall cost. To help airlines along, LSG Sky Chefs employs trends experts and conducts market studies. Passengers are brought into focus groups. Gauging desires important in areas such as fresh food items, where wastage can be high. “A passenger needs to be able to recognize the airline they are flying with from the products on offer,” Patermann adds. “So again, we start with the airline and develop the program with products fitting to them. Local brands are very important in this respect, and also the authenticity of the food.”
Partnership means ‘Vantage’ sales for Thompson Aero
Seat manufacturer Thompson Aero has secured a deal for sales of 189 of its business class seats, called the Vantage, to Aer Lingus; and to help supply the product, it did not need to look too far to obtain just what the airline ordered. The Vantage is a lie-flat product that Aer Lingus plans for the business class cabin of its A330s. The first of the seats were delivered last year and will continue arriving until March of 2015. Thompson isn’t the only company on the Emerald Aisle to benefit from the order. In the seat is an inflight entertainment system from Inflight Dublin. Fabrics and carpets used in the business class were supplied by Botany weaving, also in Dublin. Altogether, Aer Lingus has invested approximately £100 million (US$164 million) in the region around Belfast, where Thompson Aero has its headquarters in nearby Portadown. The announcement of the seating contract brought Aer Lingus’ Chief Executive, Christoph Mueller to Belfast the announce the news. “This represents a significant investment for Aer Lingus and we are delighted to award the contract to a Northern Ireland-based manufacturer, following an extensive competitive tender process,” he said. “Our commitment to our Belfast base at George Best Belfast City Airport, our customers and the local economy has never been greater.”
The Vantage seat from Thompson Aero was the result of a collaboration between three Irish companies for an Irish airline
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DUBAI WORLD TRADE CENTRE, UAE
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ACRO BRINGS COMFORT TO THE CABIN Acro Aircraft Seating designs and manufactures aircraft seating for the economy cabin, with an eye toward reducing operating costs, improving passengers’ on-board experience and reducing fuel burn with lightweight materials. “An Acro slim seat typically affords an additional two inches of legroom when compared to an older traditional seat at the same pitch,” says Cameron Allan, Commercial Director, Acro Aircraft Seating. “Out of the top five U.S domestic air carriers ranked for C02 emission reduction, three now fly or will fly within the next six months with Acro seats on board,” adds Allan. In the U.S., Acro seats are currently flying with Spirit Airlines,
one other LCC and two additional major airlines, the names of which will be announced in early 2015. At this year’s Aircraft Interiors Expo, Acro will exhibit two rows of triple seats. One row will showcase an extra-width seat variant, pre-reclined, with Acro’s mini tray table on Acro’s Ultra XC seats reverse. The second row will display the Acro seat recline and shroud enclosure for audio or video IFE as well as an extra-width seat, that sees the center seat set at 19.3 inches, flanked on the aisle and window by wide 18.1inch cushions. Visit Acro Aircraft Seating at AIX, booth #739
LUFTHANSA TECHNIK SHEDS LIGHT ON ON-BOARD SAFETY
CELESTE OFFERS INNOVATIVE CLEANING SOLUTIONS
With more than 30 subsidiaries and over 26,000 staff, the Lufthansa Technik Group is a leading provider of aircraft-related technical services. Its product divisions include line and base maintenance and overhauls to component support, engine and landing gear services, supplementary services and VIP and Executive Jet Solutions. Offering interior solutions for fleets of any mix and size, Lufthansa Technik handles aircraft interior programs of every complexity. “As a ‘one-stop shop,’ cabin refurbishments contracted to Lufthansa Technik can either be scheduled individually, or smoothly integrated into scheduled heavy maintenance checks,” says Wolfgang Reinert, International Media Relations, Corporate Communications, Lufthansa Technik. At this year’s Aircraft Interiors Expo, Lufthansa Technik will showcase three innovations, including GuideU, a reliable and maintenance-free emergency floor path marking system. Designed for easy installation, GuideU is the next generation of non-electrical floor path marking systems, consisting of photo luminescent lighting strips on the cabin floor to guide passengers to the exits in the event of an emergency. Assembly or special tools are not required for installation, and the luminescent strips can be used for galleys and carpeted areas of the cabin. “The self-sealing design makes end caps obsolete even if cut to length at the installation site,” explains Reinert. The patented GuideU system features an efficient and lightweight design, saving more than 15% weight versus competing products. Compared to its predecessor, the new design saves eight kilograms of weight on a 777 and 15 kilograms when installed in an A380. Visit Lufthansa Technik Group at AIX, booth #525
GuideU is the next generation of nonelectrical floor path marking systems, featuring photo luminescent lighting strips
38 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
Celeste Industries Corporation began as a perfume manufacturer in both aerosol perfume and stick cologne technology. During the 1950s, the company diversified into non-woven wipes for hospitals and toilet chemicals for government bomb shelter programs. Through product and market transitions, Celeste toilet chemical technology evolved through military aircraft applications and, ultimately, to commercial airlines. From this foundation of cleaning and odor control, the company broadened its technology portfolio to encompass hard-surface cleaning, closed-system cleaning, disinfecting and sanitizing, potable water quality and hand care. Today, Celeste serves most of the world’s commercial airlines and is recognized as a leading innovator of chemical formulations, meeting the ever-increasing demands of the global transportation markets. At this year’s Aircraft Interiors Expo, Celeste will showcase a new product for adhesive and gum removal called MicroGreen™ Adhesive & Gum Remover. Also highly effective for stain removal, this water-based product is 100% biodegradable and non-hazardous, leaving plastic and painted surfaces damage-free. “This new technology was designed to ensure efficacy while eliminating the issues faced today by products that contain high Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) or petroleum-based solvents,” says Stephanie Cleary, Marketing Manager, Celeste Industries Celeste’s MicroGreen™ Adhesive & Gum Corporation. Remover is 100% Celeste’s MicroGreen™ Adhesive & Gum biodegradable and non-hazardous Remover complies with Boeing D6-7127 material specifications and is available in two sizes, each with a convenient flip-top cap for easy-to-target application. Visit Celeste Industries Corporation at AIX, booth #827
HOT! Listen in
Company Name: AVID Airline Products Company Location: Middletown, Rhode Island Description: AVID is pleased to present the latest arrival of high-performance noise-canceling headphones in its portfolio of audio devices. The ergonomic headphones come equipped with unique noisecanceling technology, tilted ear cups and snug-fit leatherette ear pads for reduced sound leakage and long-wear comfort. Styles include NC-306, NC-308 and NC311. AVID offers value-based audio equipment that can be customized to support branding efforts.
Company Name: Romtex Anjou Aeronautique Company Location: Paris, France/Sibiu, Romania Description: Romtex Anjou Aeronautique presents new lightweight seat belts that are suitable for premium and economy seats and meet TSO C22g requirements. Advantages include a ninety-degree buckle and a rated strength of up to 3,000 pounds. The new seat belts are available in multiple color options and in a variety of custom finishes, plating and logos.
Stainless steel cutlery
Company Name: Global Inflight Products Company Location: Redmond, Washington Description: Global Inflight Products (G.I.P.) is pleased to introduce its new stainless steel cutlery collection. The elegant cutlery set features long refined lines and is distinguished by its extra light weight. The new collection has been designed with an avant-garde touch for the inflight dining experience. Visit Global Inflight Products at WTCE: Booth #613
Company Name: Chromalloy Company Location: Palm Beach Gardens, Florida Description: Chromalloy is a leading supplier of technologically advanced repairs, coatings, investment castings, and services for turbine airfoils and other critical engine components. The company serves engine manufacturers and operators in commercial aerospace, defense, and the energy industry. Chromalloy facilities include operations, annexes and sales offices in 17 countries around the world.
40 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
WHAT’S HOT! Innovative offerings
Company Name: Linstol Company Location: Naples, Florida and London Description: In conjunction with its design partner, KVB and premium skincare and spa lifestyle brand, Temple Spa, Linstol creates intriguing amenity kits that offer quality, style and a flourish of creativity. Linstol provides creative design coupled with premium cosmetic offerings to engage the interest of today’s premium traveler and to create the “wow” factor.
New dish collection
Company Name: RMT Global Partners LLC Company Location: Atlanta/ Munich/Shanghai Description: By developing new products or modifying existing ones, RMT Global Partners delivers the tools needed to create the best experience possible for customers. As an example, RMT Global Partners’ “New Bone China” is 15-20% stronger than porcelain and has the look and feel of traditional Bone China without the cost.
Music to your ears
Company Name: Buzz Company Location: Melbourne, Milan, Shanghai, Hong Kong Description: Buzz has facilitated an inflight collaboration opportunity in the inflight audio product category between Billboard and Delta Air Lines. Delta has joined with music brand Billboard, to introduce new, ergonomically designed earbuds for the airline’s valued customers. The new Billboard earbuds are available to Delta Air Line customers on all IFE equipped flights worldwide.
GLUTEN FREE SNACK CRACKERS Convenient on-the-go snack packs Made with high quality non-GMO ingredients Available in three delicious gluten free flavors
FREE YOUR TASTE BUDS®
Company Name: Onboard Logistics Ltd. Company Location: Santry, Dublin, Ireland Description: Onboard Logistics is pleased to introduce its Stackable Food Drawer. Each drawer is air vented to keep food chilled. When the food is distributed, stack the drawers either in atlas boxes or at the bottom of each trolley. Place a Flex-e-Bag inside to maximize the capacity of the trolley and collect in waste. Registered design and patent pending.
N NOM O G
Partners, A Tasteful Choice Company • 800-632-7477 • partnerscrackers.com www.pax-intl.com | PAX INTERNATIONAL | 41
Emirates Flight Catering Chef wins IFSA cook-off “Culinary rock ‘n roll.” It is reasonable to assume that one of the judges for this year’s International Flight Services Association’s IFSA Chef ’s Competition was paying a compliment to Emirates Flight Catering Chef Haiko-Michael Schafer with the colorful description of his appetizer and entrée presented toward the closing of the yearly event, held September 15 in Anaheim, California. Schafer walked away with a prize of two tickets on Hawaiian Airlines, and just as important, bragging rights as the winner from a field of four chefs, and a few busy assistants. The afternoon emcee was Gate Gourmet Executive Chef Bob Rosar. The competition was part of the APEX/IFSA Expo. This year, the contestants constructed an appetizer and an entrée made from five ingredients: bulgur wheat, kale, pistachio nuts, lobster and flatiron steak. This year, the chefs had the opportunity to work with local student chefs, and were judged in part on their ability to form a working relationship between chef and sous chef. Schafer started with an appetizer of seared lobster tail with couscous and bulgur wheat flavored with orange and pistachio pesto. His entrée was flatiron steak with balsamic jusslie, kale with assorted seasonal vegetables and sautéed fingerling potatoes. Schafer competed against three other chefs: Will Cunneen,
Virgin America on top again in Passenger Choice Awards San Francisco-based Virgin America dominated a field of finalists, claiming awards for best in region, cabin ambience, inflight video and ground experience before marching up to claim the award for best overall passenger experience during the annual Passenger Choice Awards held at this year’s Airline Passenger Experience Association Expo (APEX). The Association polls passengers from around the world each year to find the field of finalists. APEX also continues its annual Avion Awards for best achievements in technology, best single achievement in passenger experience and, this year, honored two members for lifetime achievement. The early evening awards ceremony was held at the Anaheim Convention Center, the evening before the start of the APEX/ IFSA Expo. Laura Trevelyan, anchor for BBC World News was the host for the event. This is the second consecutive win for Virgin America. The awards program gives the voting power to airline passengers, who rate their travel experience through an online survey. The Nielsen Company, consumer measurement and information firm, tabulates the results. Singled out for lifetime achievement Monday night was Lee Casey, Vice President of Customer Programs at Lumexis, and Mark Horton Vice President of Non-Theatrical Sales for Paramount Pictures. Other Avion Award winners were ViaSat Inc. for its Exede In The Air Inflight Internet product. Norwegian Airlines claimed the award for best single achievement in passenger experience for its Interactive Geotainment moving map, which also doubles as a producer of ancillary revenue through sales for placement 42 | PAX INTERNATIONAL | OCTOBER 2014
Chef Haiko-Michael Schafer at work in the IFSA Chef’s Competition September 15 in Anaheim
Executive Chef at Gate Gourmet’s Chicago O’hare unit; Robert N. Moussally, Executive Chef in charge of menu design and culinary development at LSG Sky Chefs North America and Markus Schaedler who works in research and development at Gourmet Foods, Inc. Four chefs served as judges this year: J. Hemmer, Director of Sales Onboard Services at Cuisine Solutions; Roberto Gerometa, Corporate Executive Chef at Nestlé Professional; Giovanni Del Rosario, Director/Associate Professor/Executive Chef at the Culinary Arts program at Harbor College in Los Angeles and Chai Chaowasaree, Executive Chef at Hawaiian Airlines, and owner of two restaurants, Chef Chai’s at Pacifica and Chef Chai’s in Waikiki. by hotels, restaurants and destination-related attractions within the map. The final Avion Award went to the Newcomer of the Year, which was General Dynamics. The award was designed to recognize specific achievement, which an airline has successfully used and implemented in the past year.
Virgin America team members take the stage to receive the award for best passenger experience. Also pictured, second from left, is host for the evening, Laura Trevelyan, anchor for BBC World News
Airline winners of the 2014 Passenger Choice Awards are: Best Overall Passenger Experience – Virgin America Best in Region: Africa – Ethiopian Airlines Best in Region: Americas – Virgin America Best in Region: Asia and Australasia – Garuda Indonesia Best in Region: Europe – Norwegian Airlines Best in Region: Middle East – Emirates John White Publication Award – Gulf Air Best IFE User Interface – Virgin Atlantic Airways Best Inflight Connectivity & Communications – Norwegian Airlines Best Inflight Video – Virgin America Best Cabin Ambiance – Virgin America Best Food & Beverage (in conjunction with the International Flight Services Association) – Turkish Airlines Best Ground Experience – Virgin America
International Association of Airport Duty Free Stores
DutyFree Show of the
AMERICAS MARCH 22–25, 2015 Orlando World Center Marriott
Orlando, Florida, USA
The most important week of the year for your business Join us for the 2015 Duty Free Show of the Americas — your chance to connect with more than 160 exhibitors showcasing thousands of brands to more than 300 duty free store companies from over 60 countries! Conduct business on the tradeshow floor, and enjoy additional networking opportunities provided by IAADFS social events. Come see why attendees and exhibitors consistently say that our show is “the” place to do business.
See what attendees are saying about the show! “We made very valuable contacts in the industry, from buyers to travel retail agents.” “The most promising part was the new business generated, as well as contacts to follow up on.” “We got great response from travel retail operators in the Americas.“
Follow us on Twitter @IAADFS
The Duty Free Show of the Americas is hosted by the International Association of Airport Duty Free Stores, representing the duty free industry for more than 45 years.
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We’ve broadened our portfolio to provide you with an even more complete range of services. Get the edge in passenger satisfaction – put our expertise to work for you. There are plenty of good reasons why LSG Sky Chefs is the worldwide market leader. Together, the possibilities are endless.