See below the list of current and pending members of the Global Alliances.
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Numerous media reports have speculated that Lufthansa may be on the acquisition trail. Group CEO Carsten Spohr told Bloomberg that consolidation in Europe is needed and that Lufthansa wants to be a part of it (Bloomberg, 22-Apr-2016), but did not identify specific targets. Moreover, Mr Spohr said the Group was concentrating on making sure that its LCC platform Eurowings worked first.
Interestingly, however, the reports have specified three possible acquisitions, in each case suggesting that they could be used as part of the Eurowings project. The three are SAS, Brussels Airlines and Condor Flugdienst (part of the Thomas Cook Group). In all three cases, there are historical and/or cultural reasons to suggest that some form of closer cooperation, including the possibility of acquisition (or partial acquisition), could feasibly be up for discussion.
Lufthansa's partnership with SAS goes back to the time before they were both involved in setting up the Star Alliance, while Lufthansa is already a minority shareholder in Brussels Airlines and a former shareholder in Condor. Of the three, only Condor could be a realistic candidate to become part of the Eurowings operation. None of these possible Lufthansa acquisitions would significantly change European airline market structure.
Geneva Airport is one of the two major gateways into Switzerland, along with Zürich Airport. It is the one closest to the eastern part of France, actually straddling the boundary with that country. Mainly a point-to-point airport hosting O&D traffic, it does have a minor hub role; however, that responsibility falls mainly to Zürich Airport where the airline Swiss – a member of the Lufthansa Group and the Star Alliance – has much greater capacity.
Geneva Airport is in competition with other Swiss airports such as Zürich and the transnational Europort (Basel) but also with the French airport of Lyon, around 150 km distant by road, and, to a lesser degree those at Turin and Milan in Italy.
Intriguingly, Geneva Airport has recently let it be known that it has submitted a bid in the privatisation of Lyon St Exupéry Airport in France, in what would be its first venture into foreign airport management if it were successful.
This report examines Geneva Airport by way of several sets of metrics, comparing the airports that are rivals to it, and examining its construction activities and ownership.
Part 1 of the report on the ways full service airlines can regain short haul market share from LCCs considered more detailed issues at the 'coal face' of the business. These included pricing strategy, ancillary revenues, the approach to cost reduction, changes to the product and service and, crucially, how to gain the support of employees.
This second part looks at three higher-level issues, namely distribution strategy, establishing new business models and the use of partnerships. Both parts of the report are based on themes arising from a panel discussion under the chairmanship of Professor Rigas Doganis at the CAPA Airlines in Transition conference in Dublin on 10 and 11-Mar-2016, and the related votes taken on these topics by delegates.
Since CAPA's first Airlines in Transition event four years ago, there has been considerable movement in the business models of both LCCs and FSCs, mostly towards each other. In spite of the emergence of a hybrid model, LCCs still have a unit cost advantage and FSCs still face a competitive challenge. However, LCC seat share has levelled off since 2013.
The UK’s Birmingham Airport enjoyed one of its best ever years in 2015. Britain’s seventh biggest airport serves its second largest city, and recent route gains lend weight to its drive to grow accordingly.
The airport has stiff competition from huge hubs such as London Heathrow and outright low cost airports such as London Stansted alike, quite apart from local rivals. Birmingham is similar to mid-sized businesses in other industries in that it feels the pinch from either side of the economic spectrum. But with essential infrastructure in place, the prospect of a high-speed rail line, and aggressive route marketing Birmingham Airport is finally closing in on the status that its public and private sector owners demand.
The concentration of direct routes from Birmingham is clearly on Europe while existing and planned routes, some of them quite new since the opening of a runway extension, are evident in the Middle East and South Asia, in addition to two US routes.
This report looks at present and future growth trends at Birmingham airport, the local airport statistics, how the airport matches up to competing airports on either side of its catchment area across a range of metrics, at construction activities and at its ownership.
When the regulators approved metal-neutral joint ventures over the North Atlantic, initially involving major airlines in the three global alliances (the JV between Delta and Virgin Atlantic came later), the justification was that they would be in the public interest. In general, the so-called immunised joint ventures have encouraged better capacity and frequency coordination, and a convergence of product and service quality towards that provided by the superior partner (although there is still room for improvement in many cases).
Schedules data from OAG indicate that 78% of North Atlantic ASKs will be operated by these JVs in summer 2016 (assuming that Aer Lingus joins oneworld and its JV). Although airlines outside the JVs are growing their share – led by LCCs, airlines owned by leisure groups and Turkish Airlines – this high concentration illustrates the impact that the JVs have had on reducing competition.
This report examines historical North Atlantic capacity trends and considers some of the issues discussed by a panel at CAPA's Airlines in Transition (AIT) conference in Dublin in Mar-2016, moderated by John Byerly, a former Deputy Assistant Secretary for Transportation at the US State Department.
In 2010 the Star Alliance lost its member in China's financial heart – Shanghai Airlines – when SkyTeam member-elect China Eastern merged with Shanghai Airlines. Privately owned Juneyao Airlines is based in Shanghai and plans to decide by the end of 2016 whether to join a global alliance. Partnerships could add impetus to Juneyao's nascent plans to fly long haul by the end of the decade.
Any decision to join an alliance would almost certainly result in Juneyao selecting Star. Star presents the greatest opportunity for Juneyao to receive connecting passengers. Long haul Star capacity into Shanghai Pudong is larger than the combined capacity from oneworld and unaligned airlines (and some of them, like Qantas, are cosying up to China Eastern). Juneyao is ruling out being in the same alliance as China Eastern, which is currently SkyTeam (and perhaps in the future – oneworld). Juneyao's network is complementary to existing Star members Shenzhen Airlines and Air China and the airline codeshares with Air China, which for a few years has wanted Juneyao to join Star.