27 Oct 2015 18:30
Etihad Airways President and Chief Executive Officer James Hogan today spoke of the importance of collaboration within the aviation industry to drive change and give consumers the benefits they deserve.
International Air Transport Association (IATA) Aviation Day in Abu Dhabi, Mr
Hogan said Etihad Airways’ successful partnership strategy could become a model
for other players.
He told the audience
that partnerships and collaboration were the most tangible way to grow in
today’s highly competitive business environment, providing consumers with
greater choice and connectivity.
“Ways of doing
business globally have changed over the years and aviation, like many other
industries, must adapt and change.
“In union there is
strength and a shared vision. At Etihad Airways we have seen the results of
working together which go well beyond commercial benefits.
“Industry observers originally
questioned our equity investment strategy. Three years on, we have proved the sceptics
wrong. Our organic growth has been supported by successful codeshare
partnerships, minority investments in selected airlines around the world, and
deep commercial agreements with competitors and non-competitors – all to
provide an enhanced global offering to the travelling public.”
Etihad Airways currently
operates a fleet of 119 aircraft flying almost 15 million passengers annually to
113 passenger and cargo destinations around the world. With a family of seven
equity partners, Etihad Airways has a combined strength of over 330 unduplicated
destinations, more than 700 aircraft and 110 million passengers. With the 49
codeshare partners, the combined strength is 600 cities globally.
“No airline can ever
achieve scale of such proportions by going out alone,” added Mr Hogan.
brings alignment across our partners which has to be good for the consumer. Business
and leisure travellers are demanding. They want, and rightly so, choices in
product, service, loyalty rewards, network, schedules, convenience and consistency.
we also enjoy significant cost reduction opportunities such as joint
procurement of assets, services and supplies. We recently concluded an
innovative financing transaction involving some of our equity partners which
raised US$700 million across international markets to fuel growth collectively,
a clear endorsement of our business model.”
presentation, Mr Hogan spoke about the tremendous economic and social benefits in
countries where Etihad Airways had established equity partnerships.
As the national
airline of the United Arab Emirates, he said Etihad Airways was proud to fly
the nation’s flag to all corners of the world, being an economic vehicle of Abu
Dhabi and the UAE, and working towards the country’s 2030 vision for a more
sustainable and diversified economy.
Despite all the
positive measures taken by the airline to compete and grow its business, he also
spoke of the challenges of operating in the Middle East and Africa, the region which
forms the focus of the two-day IATA Aviation Day conference.
instability and conflicts in parts of the region continue to affect the
performance of the business. So too do security concerns deterring leisure
travellers, as well as rising infrastructure costs, increasingly crowded skies
and austerity measures impacting consumer spending,” he said.
“Like rest of the
industry we are not immune to these challenges, but collectively, as an
industry, not in isolation, we can work towards finding solutions and come up
with a framework that is both workable and competitively feasible.
“It is here that industry cooperation can be
mutually beneficial and provide a win - win situation for all.”