CAPA Americas Aviation Summit

Las Vegas, United States of America
11-12 Apr 2016



Chairman's welcome


Keynote Address: Leadership and a new growth paradigm
American Airlines, CEO, Doug Parker in conversation with CNN Anchor Richard Quest


Standing out from the crowd: Air travel has become commoditised – or has it? 

  • Disrupting ‘sameness’: What can airlines do to differentiate and create new customer value propositions? 
  • Owning the customer journey: Do airlines have to become shrewd retailers to maximise revenue from every seat? 
  • Getting the right internal structure to shift data from the IT geeks to the business strategists: Airlines are sitting on mountains of data and discovering a strategic opportunity  

Moderator: McKinsey & Company, Partner, Will Coleman

Panel Members: 

  • ADARA, SVP Business Development, Tobias Wessels
  • Allegiant Travel Company, SVP Planning & COO, Jude Bricker
  • Chubb, SVP Global Head of Travel Insurance, Alex Blake
  • Hertz Global Holdings, VP of Merchandising & Ancillary Revenue, Brian Casebolt
  • Sabre, Manager, Pricing & Revenue Management Consulting, Terry McClintock
  • Travelport, VP Americas, Air Commerce, Chris Engle




Canada's aviation policy under review 

Canada’s aviation market is very different from its larger southern neighbour. It is a seemingly solid duopoly domestically and, unlike the US’ liberal policy, is a global standout for protectionism internationally. Attempted new domestic entrants have not been successful and Canada’s newly released policy document notes that “Canada is the only major air market without an ultra-low-cost carrier” and implies a move to allow 49% foreign ownership would help to rectify this failing; but meanwhile both Air Canada and WestJet have established long haul low cost operations.

The policy document also raises the prospect of changes to airport ownership and control, a relatively innovative change. This would substantially alter the way the airports operate.

To become more commercial, the airports may need to reclaim some of the traffic that is currently diverted over US hubs due to Canada’s restricted access regime.

  • Is there room in Canada’s domestic market for new ULCC entrants?
  • How would the proposed new airport ownership policy change the aviation scenario?
  • Are consumers’ interests adequately represented in the Canadian system?
  • Does Canada’s international aviation policy best serve its national interest?

Moderator: University of Winnipeg, Associate Professor, Faculty of Business & Economics, David Duval

Panel Members:

  • InterVISTAS, Chief Economist & Chief Strategy Officer, Mike Tretheway
  • NewLeaf Travel Company, President & CEO, Jim Young


"We want a piece of the action": Unprecedented airline profits create expectations in all stakeholders
Shareholders have been the main beneficiaries of the outstanding profits of the past two years. Pilots and other staff have also participated in the upside. How that occurs varies from airline to airline; some deliver bonuses, others prefer salary increases. But whatever the delivery mode, there is a rising tide of belief that a new phase has been reached, and that the privations of the past decade of bankruptcies and wage declines now need to be redressed. This can create issues for management, well aware of how capricious the external environment can be. Raising benchmark salaries in good times has arguably led to vicious downward cycles in past decades. But management through these times has frequently been lacking in long term direction. 
Today’s unions are increasingly well educated in the need for cooperative action. Can the current tide be effectively navigated, while satisfying increasingly voracious investors/analysts? 

  • Some US pilot contracts have been rejected in the past two years due to unhappiness with profit sharing and work rules, rather than pay rates. It is hard to discern patterns in voting on different issues. Where are we headed in the coming cycle of negotiations? 
  • Metamorphosis of Pilot relations: Is it, simply the passage of time, or is it company size – as you get bigger people lose personal contact? How much is the result of internal union ambitions? 
  • Is there a “fair” distribution of benefits between employees and shareholders?

Moderator: Cowen & Company, Managing Director, Helane Becker

Panel Members:

  • Allegiant Travel Company, SVP Planning & COO, Jude Bricker
  • Allied Pilots Association, Government Affairs, Captain Bob Coffman
  • ALPA, Managing Director, David Krieger
  • Association of Flight Attendants, International President, Sara Nelson
  • Southwest Airlines, Senior Director Labour Relations, Naomi Hudson


LUNCH & End of Summit