Wednesday, April 18, 2012

airline news...

Foreign airlines shunning UK due to lack of space at Heathrow airport, BAA boss Colin Matthews reveals

Foreign airlines are “voting with their feet” and building networks outside of the UK due to the Government’s paralysis on aviation policy, ministers will be warned on Wednesday.

BAA boss Colin Matthews will unveil new research at a conference in London, showing 53pc of airlines are increasing their flights out of other countries due to the severe capacity restraints at Heathrow.
The airports boss will renew his warning that the UK is losing out on vital investment and jobs due to the Government’s lack of support for expanding capacity at Britain’s only hub airport.
A survey by the Board of Airline Representatives in the UK - an organisation that represents 84 global airlines - shows that 86pc would introduce more flights to the UK if a greater number of take-off and landing slots were made available at Heathrow.
Publication of the Government’s much-anticipated aviation White Paper, due by the end of March, has been delayed until the summer, frustrating airline and airport bosses who warn ministers need to urgently address the crippling “capacity crunch” in the South East of England.
Speaking at the Transport Times conference in London, Mr Matthews will say: “These figures show that it is a mistake to believe that flights displaced from Heathrow will automatically fly to Stansted, Gatwick or Birmingham instead.

(This article first appeared in The Telegraph on Wednesday March 18)
 For full story, click:

Emirates airline may look at investing in India carrier

Dubai-based Emirates airline has indicated that it may look at investing in an Indian carrier, as India's government is mulling to allow foreign airlines to buy stakes in domestic carriers.
"The airline is open to looking at anything that helps its business and is at the right price," said Chairman and CEO of Emirates airline Shaikh Ahmad bin Saeed Al Maktoum.
He said, however, nothing is happening for the moment. On whether the airline would consider investing in an Indian carrier such as Kingfisher Airlines, the Gulf News quoted him as saying, "Talking about the business, there are many other companies like that around the world which we could look at, but don't expect us to buy everything."
The airline has been trying to gain additional flying rights in India.

This story first appeared in Economic Times of India. For full story, click:

JetBlue and Japan Airlines reach codeshare deal

JetBlue Airways Corp. and Japan Airlines said Tuesday that they reached a deal on a codeshare agreement that will make it easier for travelers to book flights between the U.S. East Coast and Japan.
Starting Wednesday for travel on or after Sunday, customers making reservations will see Japan Airlines' code on JetBlue-operated flights, the airlines said.
The agreement coincides with the Japanese airline starting flights between Boston and Tokyo with the new Boeing 787 aircraft. Japan Airlines also currently offers daily nonstop service to Tokyo from New York.

This article first appeared in Business Week, for full story click:

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

MAS new logo - why the need for change?

Is it really necessary for MAS to change its logo?

MALAYSIA AIRLINES (MAS) has changed its logo or livery, as it likes to call it.The age old red and blue on its logo are fast disappearing and have been replaced with three tones of blue. Its iconic wau is now at the tail-end. The red and blue logo was first introduced with much fanfare on Oct 15, 1987.
This new change has seeped in early March, and it came just days after the national carrier reported a huge net loss of RM2.5bil.
Going by what MAS said, the new logo was intended for its A380 launch to “signify its change to becoming a premium airline.” At the launch last month, its official said the colour scheme and livery (red and blue) of its existing aircraft would remain unchanged for now.
Does it mean it would have two logos? Is there a company with two logos when the old logo has faded from its website?
However, MAS feels the change is to give it a “new look and feel” with the A380 flagship product. The A380 is the super big bird that can seat nearly 500 passengers and MAS would take delivery of that aircraft sometime this year to use it for its KL-London flights.
This change has promoted many to ask “what was wrong with the red and blue logo” and why change and spend money at a time when MAS is said to be a “sick patient.”
Is this new “feel and look” going to bring it back to health or it is intended to jettison it from its negative history?
The whole logo thingy has baffled many. Those who have seen it feel it is “dull and gloomy.”
It is nothing wrong for companies to change their logo as even the most popular brands like Coca-Cola or even Apple have changed their logos to reflect the times.
Certain logos stands the test of time and the old MAS logo is a timeless logo, there is also a lot of goodwill with old logos, and of course, familiarity.
A brand, according to experts, is “the soul of a company...and a good brand is one that delivers on its promises; it is not just about words but about actions. That is the heart of it - absolutely delivering and sometimes exceeding on its promises.”
It can be understood why MAS would want to move away from the blue and red, and we can also understand that the world is moving so fast but there are some who just want to hold on to simple pleasures as they want to be reminded of them, though the world can move by.
That association means a lot to individuals, though for companies, it may be meaningless. And if you look around, not many global airlines like to change their logo for familiarity reasons.
Retailer GAP had to learn a bitter lesson when its consumers were irked with the logo change and within days it had to retain its old logo. There are others who do minor font changes to keep up with the times, and it is often a well thought off process, and with the buy-in from within and externally.
MAS may have its reasons to change the logo but there is a difference between MAS and a private company, which can do whatever it wants. MAS is a national carrier and there are certain traditions it should hold on to.
To be in sync with times, it should have perhaps done a poll and asked the public's view before making the change. Let's not forget, the travellers' votes count and the traveller likes familiarity.

(This article first appeared in The Star on Friday April 13, 2012 -Friday Reflections)

PAL in for a change?

Turning Philippine Airlines around
The colorful history of Philippine Airlines took another major turn just before the Lenten break. San Miguel Corp., led by the aggressive 58-year-old businessman Ramon Ang, bought a 40-per cent stake in, and obtained management control of, the airline.
PAL, Asia's first airline, was a source of national pride in the 1960s, until the global crisis in the 1970s and government mismanagement clipped its wings.
Hopes that it would again fly the skies profitably were revived when it was sold to taipan Lucio Tan in the 1990s.
But a series of economic crises and protracted disputes with labor unions shackled PAL once again.
Will Ang succeed in turning the ailing airline around this time?
Gauging from San Miguel's acquisition moves in the past few years, Ang has expertise in taking advantage of synergies among the companies under his supervision.
And PAL seems a perfect fit to the group. San Miguel owns Petron Corp., which can help the airline with its fuel requirements.
(Aviation fuel makes up half of PAL's operating costs.) PAL can also benefit from Petron's network of fuel storage facilities like depots and logistics systems nationwide.
San Miguel has ventured into infrastructure and now owns the Caticlan airport, the gateway to the world-famous Boracay Island. T
here are plans to expand the airport so it can accommodate international flights and boost tourist traffic.
As a San-Miguel-owned firm, PAL will benefit tremendously from this expansion, as it likewise will from San Miguel's participation in the Aquino administration's Public-Private Partnership program to redevelop the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Pasay City and the Clark International Airport north of Manila.
With the San Miguel group having about 17,000 employees, it can only be expected that they, as well as its executives, will patronize PAL as they do other San Miguel products like beer.
Add to this potential market the vast clientele of San Miguel who just might be enticed to use the airline as well.

(This article first appeared on Tuesday, Apr 17, 2012 in the Philippine Daily Inquirer/Asia News Network)

MAS London flight hit by technical defect

PETALING JAYA: Malaysia Airlines' Flight MH2 to London on Monday night was delayed for about 11 hours because of a technical defect involving its Boeing 747-400 aircraft engine.
The flight, which was initially scheduled to take off at 11.40pm from the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), finally departed at 10.34am Tuesday.
"A rescue aircraft was arranged with a fresh set of crew to continue the flight to London," said MAS in a statement.
On the incident Monday, MAS said the aircraft had experienced a technical defect in one of its engines while in the air.
"In the interest of passenger safety, the flight captain decided to return to KLIA and the Boeing 747-400 aircraft with 351 passengers and 21 operating crew had an uneventful landing at 0205 hours this morning (Tuesday)," the statement said.
The aircraft was grounded upon arrival.
Malaysia Airlines also provided accommodation for the passengers.

(First published on StarOnline on Tuesday April 17, 2012 MYT 12:39:00 PM)