15-Oct-2010 8:40 AM

Qantas CEO bullish on possible future mergers

Qantas CEO Alan Joyce stated (14-Oct-2010) in a speech at the Queensland University of Technology Business Leaders Forum that any future Qantas merger attempts would be like "BHP on steroids". Mr Joyce likened the recent failed BHP/Rio Tinto merger moves to airline amalgamations in which Qantas might be involved. While he said consolidation of the world's airlines was desirable and inevitable, and Qantas was in a good position to consolidate, the 90-year-old airline would have to maintain its iconic Australian status. Referring to the failed merger talks with British Airways, he said Qantas would have to be the dominant partner in future deals with any airline. Mr Joyce also commented that the Qantas Group has one of the world's strictest carbon reduction targets of a 2% reduction in emissions annually until 2020 despite having USD17 billion in new aircraft on order. He said the use of fossil fuel alternatives was key to meeting the target. The CEO also stated fuel price volatility was another challenge with record low fares this year across the industry in the face of high fuel costs. [more]

Qantas: "Dealing with volatile exchange rates is a challenge and the high Australian dollar is a positive for Qantas outbound but less so for inbound as we need to keep a balance ... Every AUD1 million movement in fuel costs has a AUD36 million impact on the bottom line," Alan Joyce, CEO. Source: Queensland University of Technology, 14-Oct-2010.

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