- Cargo traffic (FTMs): -4.9% year-on-year;
- By carrier:
- Domestic: -6.0%;
- International: -4.1%;
ATA cargo traffic down 4.9% in Oct-2011
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Delta Air Lines & Korean Air announce joint venture in shadow of China Southern's SkyTeam defection
It is surely no coincidence that Delta Air Lines and Korean Air announce their joint venture a mere two days after their SkyTeam partner China Southern Airlines – the largest in Asia, second largest in SkyTeam and sixth largest in the world – agrees to an investment and broad strategic partnership from Delta's rival, American Airlines, a member of oneworld.
Delta and Korean Air have long flagged their JV and the 29-Mar-2017 announcement is only a Memorandum of Understanding. The JV will have to be strong, with a high level of integration and trust, since it will involve profit sharing and not just revenue sharing.
Yet aside from that Delta and Korean have offered no new details, or even a time frame. Their announcement merely formalises what they have essentially been saying for months.
If it is to be leverage against China Southern-American, it should be noted that the two partnerships will be very different in the medium term and will not create significant competition with each other. The Delta-Korean JV comes with unfortunate timing for Korean Air, which continues to face slackening investor confidence and severe pressure in the Korea-China market.
Cuba's alluring new mystique quickly fades as US airlines face overcapacity and sluggish demand
Close to a year ago the US airlines were rushing to gain approval to operate scheduled service to Cuba, after a hiatus of more than 50 years. The competition was intense, with airlines strongly criticising the touted merits of the service proposals offered by their rivals. The opportunity for operations to Cuba seemed endless, and US airlines from wide ranging business models worked feverishly to ensure that they earned access to what was deemed the next big market for burgeoning traffic potential.
But underlying the excitement were concerns over Cuba’s ability to handle an influx of travellers to the US, and whether the expectations for demand between the two countries were overblown. Recent cuts in Cuban capacity by US airlines show that those operators were somewhat overzealous in their initial demand calculations, and the spool up period for those routes.
The tempered ambitions reflect the realities of actually operating in a market versus estimating the demand patterns of a new market but having little in the way of concrete data to work with. Due to market overcapacity, two US airlines are pulling service to Cuba altogether.