Comments by Javier Hidalgo, CEO of Air Europa's parent group Globalia, that he wanted to create a great hub like Dubai in Madrid are headline-grabbing. Because of this, they are worthy of further examination. He made the remarks while in Bolivia, on a tour of Latin America to seek business development opportunities for Globalia.
For Air Europa, Latin America is the most important source of revenue and growth, particularly while its larger rival Iberia is pausing in its own Latin American expansion. It seems that Mr Hidalgo's vision is to ratchet up Air Europa's position on routes between Spain and Latin America by capitalising on Globalia's hotel and tourism businesses to stimulate demand.
After accounting the importance of Latin America to Air Europa, Part 2 of this CAPA report will use Mr Hidalgo's reference to a hub like Dubai to assess and categorise Europe's hub airports according to the number of destinations served outside Europe, in total and by region. Madrid is not like Dubai, but Mr Hidalgo's comments prompt an examination of the nature of hubs in Europe and how they compare with the world's biggest international hub.
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