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July 28, 2017



Today's Top Stories



Industry News | Comfort & Ambience | Entertainment & Connectivity | Catering & Services


Richard Branson Cedes Control as Air France-KLM, Delta and Virgin Atlantic Launch JV

Richard Branson is selling a 31 percent stake in Virgin Atlantic to Air France-KLM for $288 million, relinquishing his controlling share of the airline he founded in 1984. The deal forms part of a tie-up announced yesterday by Virgin, Delta Air Lines and Air France-KLM to launch a joint venture on transatlantic flights. Branson, however, will keep a 20 percent stake and remain chairman of Virgin Atlantic, while Delta will acquire a 10 percent stake in Air France-KLM.

The Guardian | Related What’s the Future for Britain’s Airlines? – The Independent



Thales Secures FCC License for FlytLIVE Ka-Band Terminals

Thales has received a blanket license authorization from the US Federal Communications Commission for its airborne terminals to communicate with four geosynchronous Ka-band satellites over the Americas. The 15-year license allows Thales to equip terminals on all US and non-US registered aircraft. The company said the approvals were a significant milestone for the launch of its FlytLIVE Ka-band network.

Inflight Online | Related Thales’ InFlyt 360 Increases Touchpoints Between Airlines and Passengers – APEX Media



7digital Signs In-Flight Music Agreement With GEE

7digital, a London-based B2B music and radio services company, has signed an agreement with Global Eagle Entertainment. The two-year deal involves the two companies collaborating around in-flight music services, technology and rights issues for GEE’s airline clientele. 7digital said the service will launch in the last quarter of 2017 across yet unnamed territories.

BDAILY | Related US regulatory scrutiny scuppers deal for unit of China's HNA – Reuters



Airbus Slashes A380 Production

The future of the A380 could be in doubt after Airbus cut the rate of production for the second time in just over a year. The aerospace manufacturer, which has not won an order for the superjumbo in more than two years, cut annual production from 12 A380s in 2018 to eight aircraft in 2019. Airbus CEO Tom Enders said the cuts give the company more time to make the A380 attractive to customers.

Financial Times | Related Future of Airbus A380 Superjumbo Hinges on Emirates Order – Bloomberg



Singapore’s Changi Unveils a Fully Automated Terminal

Singapore’s Changi Airport has fully unveiled its new Terminal 4 building. The two-floor terminal, covering 2.4 million square feet, is Changi’s smallest, but also its most advanced, offering its first end-to-end fully automated passenger processing from check-in to gate. Terminal 4’s ”Heritage Zone” features eateries and shops with facades resembling traditional storefronts seen throughout Singapore.

Condé Nast Traveler | Related Outside, In: Airports Sprout Indoor Gardens to Help Ease Travel Stress – APEX Media



PaxEx FAQ: How Do Airport Security and Screening Methods Work?

These days, a trip through an airport security checkpoint might involve X-rays, metal detectors, radio waves and swabbing. In the wake of Wednesday's announcement of new screening rules by the TSA following the termination of the electronics ban, APEX Media takes a closer look at the technology behind evolving airport security tools.

APEX Media | Related US to impose stricter electronic carry-on airport screening – Reuters



Intelsat Says 33e Satellite Is Slower to Attract Customers

Intelsat said that its second Epic-series high-throughput satellite, Intelsat-33e, is taking longer to attract customers than its Intelsat-29e predecessor. Stephen Spengler, the company’s CEO, said this was partly because IS-33e’s coverage of Europe, the Middle East, Africa and some of the Asia-Pacific is mostly over land, thus attracting mobile operators and Internet service providers that take longer to commit compared with airlines. “We view this as not an indication of demand,” said Spengler.

Space News | Related SpaceX Launches Satellite for Intelsat – Bloomberg  





Vanishing point. Captured by @kvel (via Instagram).

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> Tweet of the Day

After our retro ✈️, we bring you another #A330 with a special livery. #PortugalStopover, it's your time to fly! 😀

TAP Portugal @taportugal


Association News

Register for APEX EXPO at the Early Bird Rate until 31 July!

APEX EXPO is the passenger experience industry's largest fall tradeshow. Collocated with AIX Long Beach and IFSA Conference and Expo – the three-shows-in-one means access to every major airline in the world, as well as end-to-end passenger experience vendors on the ground, in the air and into the future! Register now!



We are looking for a positive and passionate Entertainment Coordinator for the world of Inflight entertainment. You will assist in servicing our customers’ entertainment needs, ensuring their long-term success. The role is to support the Account Director, to create a unique inflight experience that is engaging, trending, and true to the airlines’ brand. Click here to apply and view all job listings.
> West Entertainment LLC Entertainment Coordinator: Inflight Entertainment Irvine, CA


> Quote of the Day


"I love airports because funny things always happen at them."

Rhys Darby


Until next week



The Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX) encompasses a network of airlines, businesses and professionals that are committed to providing a world-class airline experience for passengers around the globe. Every day, APEX members are improving every aspect of the airline experience, from designing, building and installing seating, entertainment and communications systems on commercial aircraft, to airport lounges and in-flight dining. Visit for more information. APEX is professionally managed by Kellen Company, the premier global association management firm with offices and representation in the United States, Europe, China, the Middle East, India and Southeast Asia.


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