Tag Archives: Malaysia Airlines

Malaysia Airlines (MAS)- Tutup atau Jual?

  • MAS mencatatkan kerugian terkumpul sebanyak RM 2.4 billion sejak 2014 meskipun telah disuntik RM4.4 billion, membuang 6,000 pekerja dan mengurangkan laluan-laluan tidak menguntungkan.
  • 7 daripada 10 syarikat penerbangan yang menguntungkan pada 2018 adalah syarikat penerbangan nasional.

WhatsApp Image 2019-03-20 at 16.13.32

Bagi menjawab persoalan ini, kita perlu jelas apakah yang dimaksudkan sebagai syarikat penerbangan nasional.

Secara amnya, syarikat penerbangan nasional adalah dimiliki oleh kerajaan. Namun ada juga syarikat penerbangan yang dianggap penerbangan ‘rasmi’ sesebuah negara (flag-carrier) tetapi tidak dimiliki langsung oleh kerajaan tersebut.

Misalnya Lufthansa- syarikat penerbangan Jerman namun pegangan ekuiti oleh kerajaan Jerman adalah 0%. Bahkan Lufthansa memiliki tiga penerbangan nasional di tiga buah negara iaitu Swiss International Air Lines, Brussels Air Lines, and Austrian Airlines.

Pada masa yang sama tidak semua penerbangan nasional dimiliki sepenuhnya oleh kerajaan. Maknanya kerajaan hanyalah memegang sedikit atau separuh pegangan ekuiti. Contohnya seperti Perancis yang hanya memegang 18% kepentingan Air France dan Turki yang mempunyai 49% saham di dalam Turkish Airlines.

Begitu juga perihalnya dengan FinnAir (Finland), Thai Airways (Thailand), Garuda (Indonesia), KLM (Belanda) dan banyak lagi.

Secara amnya ini adalah ‘way forward’ kepada penerbangan nasional. Semakin banyak negara sudah mula melepaskan kepentingan mereka- sama ada secara total atau sebahagian. Di Amerika Syarikat tidak ada langsung penerbangan nasional.

Jika diikutkan hanya negara membangun dan negara arab kaya raya sahaja yang masih memegang penerbangan nasional 100%. Ini termasuklah Malaysia.

Sebenarnya hal pemilikan dan definisi tidaklah penting. Apa yang mustahak adalah syarikat penerbangan nasional merugikan duit negara (atau rakyat).

Ethiopian Airlines milik Ethiopa mencatatkan keuntungan meskipun dimiliki kerajaan mereka 100%.

sistem-anti-stall-boeing-max-8-ethiopian-airlines-diaktifkan-sebelum-jatuh-WMO3xWDuoF

Emirates milik UAE juga untung. Qatar Airways selama ini membuat duit tetapi hanya kerugian kerana krisis politik serantau yang memboikot Qatar.

Hairannya, Malaysia tidak mempunyai krisis sedemikian tetapi tetap rugi.

Jadi di mana silapnya apabila Malaysia Airlines (MAS) berterusan mencatatkan kerugian terkumpul sebanyak RM 2.4 billion sejak 2014 meskipun telah disuntik RM4.4 billion, membuang 6,000 pekerja dan mengurangkan laluan-laluan tidak menguntungkan?

Kita perlu ingat betapa yakinnya bekas Pengarah Urusan Khazanah sebelum ini yang berkata MAS akan ‘pulang modal’ menjelang 2018 dan akan disenarai semula di Bursa Malaysia pada 2019.

Azman-Mokhtar

CEO MAS juga dalam temu bual bersama The Edge tahun lepas begitu yakin syarikat tersebut bakal pulih dari kerugian dalam masa terdekat.

Ini sahaja sudah jelas Khazanah dan MAS tidak mempunyai kepakaran dalam mengemudi penerbangan nasional. Sudah terlalu banyak wang dileburkan. Lebih baik Khazanah tidak memandai-mandai menyediakan pelan perniagaan baru kerana terbukti ‘pelan pemulihan 12-titik fokus MAS’ yang disediakan mereka telah gagal.

Kerajaan tidak boleh menyerahkan kepada pihak yang sama untuk berterusan melakukan perkara yang sama tetapi mengharapkan hasil yang berbeza. Ikut kata Albert Einstein, ini kerja orang gila.

Oleh itu wajarkah MAS ditutup?

Dengan menutup MAS, kerajaan boleh mengelakkan dari terus menanggung kerugian sekitar RM 1 billion setahun. Namun begitu ‘penjimatan’ in hadir dengan kehilangan 13,000 pekerjaan dan keseluruhan ekosistem iaitu vendor, penyedia perkhidmatan, ekonomi hiliran akan musnah.

Adakah kita boleh menyangka bahawa pekerja MAS akan gembira apabila diberitahu membuang mereka akan membantu kedudukan kewangan negara?

Ini samalah seperti memberitahu manusia yang sedang diserang harimau supaya merelakan dirinya dibaham daripada membunuh harimau tersebut atas alasan dirinya membantu kelangsungan spesies terancam tersebut.

Sudah jelas kerajaan tidak boleh menutup operasi MAS.

Oleh itu MAS boleh memilih cara penyelesaian yang lain iaitu menjual perniagaan ini kepada pihak swasta dengan menjadi pemegang saham minoriti. (Kerana jika majoriti, rakan niaga yang baru pasti tidak bermiant dan tidak yakin.)

Apa yang diperlukan MAS pada masa kini bukannya pelan pemulihan jutaan ringgit daripada konsultan atau ‘creative accounting’, sebaliknya perubahan sebenar (real value) yang dicapai dari segi pengurangan kos, peningkatan ‘yield’ dan mempunyai produk yang tepat untuk pasaran yang tepat.

Sehingga ke hari ini, MAS masih mempunyai beberapa isu seperti stuktur bisnes yang berlapis-lapis, kadar gunaan kapal terbang yang rendah, pengurusan aset yang tidak cekap, strategi dan operasi yang tidak fokus dan kos pengurusan yang tinggi.

MAS_Newstructure

Pertama, MAS perlu mengstrukturkan kembali ‘positioning’ mereka di dalam pasaran. Apakah produk MAS yang memenuhi permintaan pasaran?

Hari ini persaingan amat sengit bagi pasaran laluan singkat (short-haul) terutama terdapat dominasi pemain penerbangan tambang murah iaitu Air Asia.

MAS boleh memfokuskan kepada pelanggan korporat / bisnes yang terbang bersama MAS kerana fleksibiliti dan servis. Banyakkan ‘volume’ kerusi bisnes atau ekonomi premium supaya harga tiket kategori ini boleh dikurangkan dan menarik perhatian pasaran.

MAS-A350-Business-Class-1

Kedua, MAS perlu asingkan atau ‘carve out’ Firefly daripada portfolio mereka bagi pasaran tambang murah dan laluan ‘short haul’.

Biarkan Firefly beroperasi sendiri dan menjadi penerbangan tambang murah yang sebenar. (Dan seterusnya menjadi pesaing hebat kepada Air Asia). Ini sekaligus akan menarik pelabur strategik yang boleh menyuntik modal kepada Firefly.

Ketiga, MAS perlu melakukan code-sharing bersama syarikat penerbangan yang mahu menjadikan Kuala Lumpur sebagai hub Asia Tenggara mereka.

Sebagai permulaan, MAS perlu menghentikan laluan KL-London. Tidak masuk akal MAS menghentikan semua laluan Eropah kecuali London. Adakah kerana begitu ramai menteri dan pembesar gemar ke London?

Sebaliknya, tingkatkan ‘market share’ dengan membawa masuk lebih ramai penumpang benua Eropah melalui perkongsian kod bersama British Airways (BA) untuk membawa penumpang dari Eropah ke Malaysia dan menjadikan Malaysia sebagai hub Asia Tenggara mereka. MAS hanya fokus membawa penumpang Eropah ke setiap ceruk benua Asia.

Dari sini, MAS boleh menyediakan ‘connectivity’ kepada laluan Asia Tenggara dan Asia di dalam radius 3 jam ke 8 jam. Bayangkan sinergi di antara laluan Manchester – Kuala Lumpur (BA) dan Kuala Lumpur – Beijing (MAS). Menang-menang.

dreamliner-L-940x463

Keempat, MAS perlu menilai kembali perniagaan mereka di dalam MAS Kargo. Setakat data yang terhad diperolehi, MAS kerugian di dalam bisnes ini. Mungkin MAS boleh melakukan JV dengan pemain kargo sebenar atau lupuskan sahaja dan fokus kepada operasi penumpang.

Kelima, MAS boleh meningkatkan nilai bisnes MAS Engineering dengan meningkatkan kadar gunaan aset-aset mereka. Pada 1990 MAS adalah nama besar bagi servis MRO. Kini tidak lagi.

MAS Engineering boleh melaksanakan JV dengan penyedia MRO seperti GE dan Honeywell bagi meningkatkan kualiti dan produk agar lebih banyak syarikat penerbangan menggunakan servis MRO MAS.

Keenam, MAS perlu mengkomersilkan akademi mereka. Memang benar akademi untuk melatih tenaga kerja MAS. Tetapi akademi yang sama boleh dibuka kepada pihak ketiga dan sekaligus memberikan pendapatan tambahan buat MAS.

Sebagai kajian kes, Akademi Air Asia atau AACE merupakan kerjasama di antara Air Asia dan CAE bagi melatih tenaga kerja Air Asia (krew kabin, pilot, jurutera, juruteknik dll). Pada 2017, Air Asia telah menjual pegangan 50% mereka di dalam JV ini dengan nilai RM 429 juta. Ini potensi buat MAS.

Ini adalah di antara sebahagian kecil apakah perkara yang boleh dilakukan oleh MAS untuk kembali menjadi pemain utama. Hakikatnya banyak lagi boleh disentuh terutama bahagian mengurangkan kos, meningkatkan produktiviti tenaga kerja dan mendigitalkan operasi MAS.

Atas sebab itu amat tidak logik untuk mengatakan syarikat penerbangan susah untuk mencatat keuntungan. Faktanya adalah- 7 daripada 10 syarikat penerbangan yang menuntungkan pada 2018 adalah syarikat penerbangan nasional.

Cuma syaratnya adalah jelas- ia perlu diuruskan sebagai entiti bisnes dan mereka yang benar-benar faham mengenai bisnes adalah usahawan, bukan kerajaan (atau Khazanah).

Mat Rodi

Tagged , ,

MAS RESTRUCTURING

mas-a380-1

In light with the recent development of MAS, I re-edited my article written five months ago, which I believe might be relevant in today’s context. Kindly read.)

To begin with, there aren’t many government-owned airlines in the world. There is none in the United States and such entities are becoming rarer in Europe. Sooner or later, that trend will spread to Asia, inevitably in Malaysia. Maybe only in the rich Gulf countries such airlines can exist.

Malaysia is not as rich as Gulf countries where money is almost unlimited. Therefore the people, especially the taxpayers have plenty of reasons to be mad at the loss-making GLC’s. There is no genuine excuse for their losses. MAS is one of the blue-blooded Malaysia GLC’s that put prestige far above profit. However, such practice is unbecoming considering the losses can be billions of Ringgit. Maybe they think- why should they care since it’s not their money.

For the last 7 years, the national carrier has made three cash call exercise for the amount of RM7.3 billion only to accumulate losses RM4.1 billion in three years’ time.

This has happened in spite of in 2013, the pilots are flying more and the planes are flying 12 hours daily from eight hours previously. MAS achieved its best ever load numbers (81%), even beating rival SIA (79%). MAS flew additional 4 million passengers last year, making the total passengers of 16 million.

So basically, they have added 20% more capacity and passengers whilst using the same number of aircraft and people, and therefore the staff productivity is up by 20%.

Therefore, It is mind-boggling to see MAS has incurred losses amounting RM 5 million per day. To make things worse, more than 1000 flight cancellations have been made since the tragedy of MH370.

No Wonder lately there are several options being proposed to restructure the airlines. On top of that- should the company file for bankruptcy, then operate under a new company and with the same name just what Japan Airlines (JAL) and American Airlines did?

Admittedly, bankruptcy is one of the fastest ways to turn it around. But it is not as easy as it sounds. When the JAL filed for bankruptcy, It has shed all its jumbos, cancelled unprofitable routes, reduced staff by a third, persuaded its unionised pilots and staff to take big pay cuts, and slashed its pension payouts by up to half.

Given the politically sensitive government at the helm, obviously this is not an option as far as political backlash is concerned. In fact, MAS has the glaring disadvantage of having several unions which can hold the company to ransom. Do you expect these unions to be happy if they are being told that the destruction of their jobs will be good for the company in the long term? How do you tell a man being devoured by a tiger that he is really helping to preserve a treasured species?

Historically, the unions  can even force the government to rescind the share-swap agreement.

Therefore, it is the only right thing for MAS to have a gradual and sustainable recovery model through harnessing the assets and keeping the people that they have.

Well, how do you that? When a business is faced with stiff competition, it can either increase prices or reduce the cost. However price can only be increased to a certain extent. MAS can’t price itself more than Emirates and SIA because if they do, then no one will fly with them.

In fact, MAS has to dump its fare to ensure they will not be out of the race. Already their market share in KLIA was slashed by half from 54% to 28% and they are not the No 1 carrier in their home country.

Given such scenario, it would be better to reduce costs and minimise the increase in price. All its cost can be examined to determine which are truly necessary, which cost can be reduced, which service can be curtailed or modified etc,etc.

For any restructuring plans to work, serious problem must be addressed first. MAS must cut off the cancerous arms and treat the bleeding organs before undertaking any prescriptions.

There must be something wrong with MAS’ cost structure given for every available seat per kilometres, they lose 5.6 cents.

MAS’s organization is said to be convoluted by having 11 divisions, 210 business divisions and more than 100 senior executives. Clearly, wastage happened at the senior management level.

Next, wastage at the supplier level. The issue of lopsided procurement contracts obviously referring to the catering contract and the practice of preferred contractor must be dealt with. We were told by terminating a catering contract, MAS can save about RM300 million per year.

Some might say MAS is overstaffed. MAS with about 100 aircraft has almost 20,000 employees while AirAsia with 300 planes has only 9,000 staff. The reason is, the number of pilots and cabin crew can’t be the same between these two companies since the working rules are different.

Due to this, some of these airlines can afford to outsource their front end services and engineering works. On the other hand, MAS do most of them and that is why the headcount gets big.

But essentially, it is about getting maximum output from the 20,000 people. We must realize that being big is not the cause of MAS’ problem. The size of the workforce, connectivity, and network may actually be one of MAS most important strengths.

The best way to restructure MAS is not through financial engineering such as asset stripping or de-list and re-list exercise. MAS has enough cash or capital. Khazanah, being the owner, may not necessarily have to invest more money. It would be better if they restructure the allocation of resources by tweaking MAS’ business model.

The most radical yet sensible approach is to split up MAS to become two entities. Currently Firefly is not a serious competitor to AirAsia or Malindo. Unless Firefly is being transformed from a mere community operator into a formidable low-cost carrier with large fleets and huge connectivity, then MAS can consider splitting the current airline into a hybrid domestic/regional airline like Malindo Air and a premium international airline.

The market has changed for the past 10-15 years where 80% of air travellers want to fly budget. The growing middle-income class in Malaysia and Asean region is very price sensitive. Therefore, it is not surprising to see that Malaysia’s air transport premier market is very small.

For that reason, MAS has to cater the 80% market rather than squeezing its yield in the 20% market. There is no way that MAS can compete against Air Asia, at least domestically and regionally. While it may be true Air Asia enable more people to fly, but it does at the expense of MAS passengers.

The ‘split-up’ move is also necessary because you can’t have two cost structures under one business entity and it is foolish to have a different brand proposition under one name/brand.

The icing on the cake from this move is that, by splitting up MAS, it will eventually split up the ‘powerful’ unions. MAS could enjoy the same advantage like profitable airlines such as Air Asia, Emirates and SIA that have no unions. MAS will be able to run the business uninterrupted by the demanding unions. For the record, MAS currently has 7 unions.

Imagine a hybrid low-cost domestic airline that flies within three-hour radius destination together with MAS hospitality and experiences to compete with Air Asia. And this hybrid airline can become a feeder airline to the premium international airline. Since both airlines are flying from KLIA and KLIA2, the possibility is endless.

MatRodi

Tagged , , ,