Rex has announced its acquisition of a Boeing 737 Full Flight Simulator (FFS), as it looks to post a $15 million financial loss for FY2020.
The airline said its new simulator will be used for type ratings, recurrent training and proficiency checks. The sim is certified for Upset Recovery Training (UPRT) and can be configured for a number of variants, including the B737-700, B737-800, and the B737 Boeing Business Jet.
“The acquisition of the Boeing 737 FFS bolsters Rex’s position in the domestic market by strengthening our training capabilities and demonstrates Rex’s long-term commitment to domestic operations in Australia,” Rex said in a statement.
The aircraft simulator will be stationed at the Ansett Aviation Training facility in Brisbane and will be later co-located with the Saab 340 FF’s at Rex’s Simulator Centre in Sydney, in about two years’ time.
Acquiring the simulator comes at a pressing time for Rex, as the airline gears up to report a full-year financial loss, caused by the pandemic, and its ambitious move into domestic capital city routes.
The airline this week announced it is revising down its interim profit guidance provided on 10 May, which forecasted a breakeven situation for this financial year.
“The latest COVID-related state border restrictions and lockdowns have severely disrupted Rex’s domestic and regional networks, forcing Rex to cancel a large number of flights to/from Melbourne,” the statement said.
“Rex is now forecasting a full year statutory loss before tax of about $15 million.”
As reported previously on Australian Aviation, the business signed off on a $150 million investment in November last year to allow it to expand its operations to fly major domestic routes using Boeing 737s, many of which were acquired from then-fumbling Virgin Australia.
In a statement released last month, the company remained confident in its projections for the future of its domestic routes.
“Rex is one of the rare airlines in the world able to achieve this incredible outcome during the pandemic whilst at the same time funding the expansion of the business into the domestic airline market,” the airline said in a statement.
While these expansions would have potentially deepened Rex’s financial drought, the company has confirmed it will be acquiring another four Boeing 737-800s for its fleet.