The Asia-Pacific commercial aircraft cabin interior market is anticipated to register a CAGR of over 6% during the forecast period.
- The new era of luxury travel requires brands to continuously monitor and adapt to consumer expectations, which steadily change with circumstances along the air journey. Growing financial affluence among the consumers is prompting the airline operators to invest in modernizing their cabin to provide unique experiences to the consumers.
- The rapid growth of air passenger traffic in the Asia-Pacific region has triggered several procurement initiatives for new aircraft. Numerous orders placed by airlines increase the business prospects for aircraft interiors, as each airline modifies the interiors of its aircraft as per its customized theme. Thus, to enhance the overall customer satisfaction index, airlines are installing new and advanced cabin interior systems like comfortable seats with more leg space, 4G connectivity, ambient lighting, and several other minor but noticeable tweaks throughout their fleet to promote a strong and influential brand image.
Key Market Trends
High Demand for Integrating Inflight Entertainment and Connectivity (IFEC) Systems to Drive the Market
Airline operators widely regard an aircraft cabin as a means to promote their brand image among customers. Hence, several airline operators worldwide are keenly investing in cabin retrofitting to satiate the increasing demand for reliable cabin connectivity, personalized entertainment systems, handsfree commands, micro cabin environments, cabin air quality, medical care, and self-cleaning and anti-bacterial materials. As airline operators are striving to achieve a balance between cost and aesthetics, several cabin-modernization programs were initiated to integrate comfortable seats, large overhead bins, and other necessary components such as in-seat power supply systems. The airline operators have been keenly investing in the integration of sophisticated IFEC systems to enable uninterrupted content services even to the personal devices of the passengers. The proliferation of the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) concept has resulted in a plethora of personalized entertainment and connectivity options available with the passengers. For instance, Garuda Indonesia provides its first-class passengers with the latest on-demand in-flight entertainment (IFE) and live streams of choice TV shows on the innovative AVOD system, through the personal 23.5 inch LCD screen, controlled conveniently by touch screen and infrared controls embedded in premium handsets. Also, the aircraft interior designers are experimenting with modern systems. New, luxurious seats are integrated into the business class and first-class segments of modern aircraft, such as the A350 and B787, which enables airlines to offer customized services to their high-net-worth individual (HNWI) passengers. In July 2017, Thompson Vantage XL seats were installed in Malaysia Airlines Berhad's (Malaysia Airlines') A350 fleet. Thompson Aero Seating Ltd. (Thompson Aero Seating), part of the Chinese state-owned conglomerate, Aviation Industry Corporation of China Ltd. (AVIC), also provides the business seating platform to Qantas Airways Ltd.'s (Qantas Airways) A330 and B787 fleet. The Thompson Vantage XL seat features gate-to-gate IFE services, and advanced in-seat power supply system to power onboard devices and also address the charging requirements of the electronic gadgets of individual passengers. Such developments are anticipated to foster the demand for cabin modernization, thereby driving the market in focus during the forecast period.
China Anticipated to Dominate the Market throughout the Forecast Period
As an emerging middle-class seeks the material aspects of luxury travel, mature markets are craving for a new, evolved type of luxury. Thus, offering luxury customers relevant, personal, and exclusive experience has become crucial. China’s commercial aviation industry is undergoing a rapid transformation to support the drastic rise in air passenger traffic. Increased demand for domestic air travel has spurred much of this growth. In 1990, only 11 million passengers traveled on domestic routes in China. By 2016, this number had risen to 426 million passengers. State-owned airlines such as China Southern Airlines, Air China, and China Eastern Airlines, collectively make up 71 percent of the China commercial aviation market. According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) forecasts, China is estimated to replace the US as the world’s largest aviation market by 2024. Thus, several orders for fleet expansion and modernization are underway. For instance, in September 2018, FTS Technologies Inc. signed an agreement with Donghai Airlines to equip the airlines’ fleet with XStream-SAT Next Generation Inflight Broadband system. Similarly, in January 2018, Thales Group signed an agreement with China HNA Group to provide AVANT, an android-based in-flight entertainment solution for 42 wide-body A330 and 17 A350 XWB aircraft. Such developments are anticipated to help China retain its dominance in the Asia-Pacific commercial aircraft cabin interior market.
The Asia-Pacific commercial aircraft cabin interior market is highly fragmented, with many companies vying for a greater market share via offering a diversified product portfolio. The vendors in the market are focusing on the designing, engineering, and manufacturing of aesthetically pleasant and high-performance cabin interior systems. Therefore, the market is directly affected by economic factors and other trends that impact the aerospace industry, which include possible consolidation of the market through the backward integration activities of aircraft OEMs. The revenues of market players are also cyclic as they are dependent on the sales of aircraft to commercial airline operators. Commercial aircraft cabin interior component manufacturers invest in the development of advanced associated systems to be integrated into modern aircraft to complement or enhance their characteristics, including safety and aesthetics. Such investments result in companies being exposed to certain risks associated with design responsibility, new production tool development, increased capital and funding commitments, delivery schedules, and unique contractual requirements. Moreover, new aircraft programs may be prone to cost-overrun and delay or termination, depending on market conditions. Moreover, there are certain risks associated with the transfer of technology, knowledge, and tooling, which may affect the financial status of the cabin interior component manufacturers. This can render them susceptible to revenue fluctuations.
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