SilkAir to undergo $100m cabin upgrades and merge with parent company SIA

Photo: Kentaro IEMOTO / Flickr

Singapore Airlines’ regional wing SilkAir will soon be completely merged with its parent company following an investment programme that will see over $100 million being spent to upgrade its cabins.

SIA announced today that the merger will only take place after a sufficient number of SilkAir aircraft have been upgraded — a process that will only start in 2020. The overhaul includes the installation of new lie-flat seats in Business Class and seat-back in-flight entertainment systems in both Business Class and Economy Class.

What this means is that the SilkAir brand will cease to exist after the merger is completed. SilkAir had its roots as Tradewinds, a subsidiary of SIA established in 1975 as a hotelier before turning into a travel agency that provided charter flights. It underwent a major brand revamp into its current incarnation in 1992, and today operates short and medium-haul routes across 49 destinations in 16 countries.

Consistent with ongoing efforts to optimize the SIA Group’s network, there will also be transfers of routes and aircraft between the different airlines in the portfolio, SIA said.

“Importantly, it will be positive for our customers. It is another example of the major investment we are making to ensure that our products and services continue to lead the industry across short-, medium- and long-haul routes” said SIA CEO Goh Choon Phong.

Details on how the merger will affect SilkAir staff and their jobs remain unclear.

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