Annual report 2019

“Skyguide performed well in 2019 in a challenging overall environment, and achieved its strategic objectives. Safety was assured throughout the year at consistently high level. And despite greater flight volumes, punctuality was impressively high, too, thanks to our forward-looking plan­ning and efficient traffic handling.”


Walter T. Vogel, Chairman of the Board of Directors
Alex Bristol, CEO skyguide

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For safety’s sake

Skyguide puts safety centrestage in every single action and activity.


A favourable performance


Promoting diversity

The aviation world is in a state of flux. Air navigation service providers must realign themselves to their customers’ changed needs.


Higher in punctuality


A stronger customer focus

Skyguide’s customers and partners include the Swiss Air Force, airlines, international and regional airports and neighbouring countries and their air navigation service providers.


Maintaining Swiss airspace sovereignty

Skyguide plays a key role in maintaining the sovereignty of Switzerland’s airspace, by performing military air traffic management services on the Swiss Air Force’s behalf.


Regional airports still proving difficult to finance

Under Article 30 of the Swiss Federal Ordinance on the Provision of Air Navigation Services (VFSD), responsibility for the costs of air navigation services at Switzerland’s regional airports was to have passed from skyguide ...


Shorter European routings

Europe’s present airspace is aligned far more closely to national borders than to its users’ needs.


Safety culture


Shaping change through innovations


Digitalisation delivers more energy efficiency

urope’s airspace is still structured along strongly national lines. Every country has its own airspace, which is managed and monitored by its own air navigation services provider.


Promoting energy efficient flight operations

The aviation community has substantially reduced its CO2 emissions per flight over the past few years.


High energy efficiency despite growing automation


Developers and trailblazers of green innovations

Skyguide is making good progress towards its environmental objectives.


2019 Highlights

  • January
  • March
  • April
  • June
  • July
  • September
  • November
  • December

Greater flexibility in airspace monitoring

The first validation tests are conducted in a SESAR research project that should bring greater flexibility to cross-border airspace management activities. The project, in which skyguide is actively involved, will provide air traffic controllers with various new tools with which they can manage the air traffic in any European airspace area, and should thus deliver sizeable benefits in safety, efficiency and cost terms.


U-Space pilot project launched in Lugano and Geneva

Skyguide and its technology partner announce a trial phase of automated flight approvals to help integrate drones into Swiss airspace. Under the trial, selected drone operators in Lugano and Canton Geneva can use a special tool to request flight approvals. The pilot project enables key feedback to be obtained from drone operators that will allow the prototype system to be further refined in line with user needs.

New radar facilities permit further wind energy development

Initial operational findings confirm that the new latest-generation primary radar facilities which skyguide has recently installed at Geneva and Zurich airports are, as hoped, more systemically tolerant of wind energy installations. As a result, skyguide can make a further major contribution to the implementation of the Swiss Confederation’s “Energy Strategy 2050”.

Skyguide earns SES Innovation Award

Skyguide is honoured at the industrywide World ATM Congress in Madrid when it is presented with the Single European Sky Innovation Award for its pioneering role in automating network management communications. The distinction is bestowed for the company’s innovative approach which enables air navigation service providers to send specific data from international airports on capacity or runway configurations directly to the network managers responsible for cross-border traffic planning. This avoids multiple data transmissions, and reduces both the complexities and the workloads involved.

Joint ESSP declaration signed

Skyguide and its co-founders and co-owners of the ESSP (European Satellite Services Provider) company sign a declaration supporting the further development of ESSP’s EGNOS satellite service. EGNOS serves the aviation sector by enhancing the positioning accuracy of global satellite navigation systems in Europe, enabling the technology to be used for further purposes such as aircraft navigation. Satellite navigation is set to increasingly replace traditional ground-based navigation facilities, and the ESSP partners’ joint declaration underlines their continued support of ESSP and its EGNOS facility.

Skyguide consistently implements its energy strategy

Skyguide continues to play its part in implementing the Swiss Confederation’s “Exemplary in energy” strategy of setting an example in energy savings terms. The initiative is intended to raise energy efficiency by 25% between 2006 and 2020, with progress monitored on a yearly basis. Skyguide takes targeted action here to reduce emissions from air transport and cut its own energy consumption, and had improved its energy efficiency some 37.4% over its 2006 level by year-end.

First legal conviction of an air traffic controller

The Swiss Federal Supreme Court confirms the ruling of the Federal Criminal Court in Bellinzona, which had sentenced an air traffic controller to a fine in April. This is the first time ever that an air traffic controller has been legally convicted over an incident in which no persons were injured and no property was damaged. Skyguide sees the ruling as strongly detrimental to maintaining the Just Culture that is so vital to aviation safety.

New General Counsel and Business Development strengthened

Skyguide names Peter Dietrich as its new General Counsel. In this capacity he will assume responsibility for the Legal and Compliance remits from Francis Schubert, Chief Corporate Officer, who will retire at the end of 2019. Dietrich, who is 52 and an attorney at law, has previously served as an executive consultant at Mäder & Partner. At the same time, Götz Ardey, Head of Communication, Navigation & Surveillance, is appointed as skyguide’s new Chief Business Development Officer. In addition to corporate development, Ardey will also be in overall charge of Sales & Marketing in his new capacity.

Skyguide earns Fair-ON-Pay Certificate

Skyguide is honoured with the Fair-ON-Pay Certificate, which confirms that the company pays fair salaries regardless of gender and thereby ensures the equal treatment of women and men. The certification further underlines skyguide’s strong credentials as a responsible employer.

Air traffic controller acquitted

A skyguide air traffic controller is acquitted of disruption of public transport by the Swiss Federal Supreme Court. The controller had appealed to Switzerland’s highest legal authority after the Zurich High Court had found him guilty of the offence for an incident in 2011. Skyguide is pleased with the result, but requests clarification of the corresponding legal situation and the anchoring of the Just Culture philosophy in Swiss law.

All training under one roof

Skyguide brings all its basic and further training units under a single roof when its HR Training, which is largely responsible for management training programmes, is integrated into the skyguide training centre. The centre, which is internationally accredited as a “HF” college of higher vocational education and training, ensures the training of skyguide’s air traffic controllers and further air navigation services personnel. The amalgamation of the two training entities enables basic and further training processes to be standardised and synergies to be tapped. As part of the reorganisation, the skyguide training centre is also renamed the “skyguide academy” from January 2020.

Annual report 2019


Read the full version of the Annual Report 2019 to find out all about the past financial
year as well as the developments in the areas of safety, air traffic punctuality, customer
orientation and European cooperation.

Environmental report 2019


Environmental protection is an integral part of our mission. This report describes the
multi-layered efforts of skyguide, both in Air Traffic Management and in other action
areas like buildings and renewable energies, mobility and green IT.

Innovation report


Skyguide is transforming its business to meet customers’ needs in a changing market of Air Navigation Services (ANS) which is on the cusp of a paradigm shift. We pride ourselves for our innovation capacity and business mindset, while always giving due priority to safety, and this is the foundation on which we are building our future.



In this 2020 edition, we will tell the story why change – which goes beyond technology – is critical and will provide different perspectives into such a technology-driven organisational and operational transformation.

Safety – The essentials


Aeroplanes are one of the safest means of transport that exist, and air navigation services play a key role in ensuring his is so. That is why skyguide personnel always have safety at the forefront of their minds.

Working at skyguide – The essentials


A successful career at skyguide depends largely on personal responsibility. This is reflected in an open management style and communication. The air navigation services of tomorrow will be characterised by its high-performing, competent, committed, responsible and well-informed employees.