London Air Travel’s Monday Briefing – 4 February 2019

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“British Airways – Made By Britain” (Image Credit: Park Pictures / Ogilvy / Wavemaker for BA)

Welcome to our Monday Briefing of the year for the week beginning 4 February 2019.

Famous Faces

What did you make of BA’s “Made By Britain” ad?

The centenary requires delicate handling. For it to work, it has to resonate with the travelling public at large, and not merely aviation aficionados and brand loyalists.

A blockbuster ad out of nowhere full of self-congratulation would not work – this is BA’s first major brand campaign in over five years – and it’s wise to start seeding the centenary into the public consciousness not talking about itself.

However, a campaign celebrating its home nation does of course take place against a background of huge political and economic uncertainty over the coming months.

Speaking to The Drum BA’s Head Of Brands and Marketing Hamish McVey said: “We’ll leave politics to the politicians. We’re focusing very much on the story we want to tell in this moment in time, which is confident one about Britain and what it means to be part of modern Britain today.”

“Events”, however, may have different ideas.

Boeing 787 Issues Continue

Staying with BA, it looks like Boeing 787 issues are continuing at the airline.

Blanket cancellations have returned to Heathrow – Doha, just two months after the route returned to normal following an eight month hiatus.

BA will also continue to wet lease an aircraft from Air Belgium for the foreseeable future, with it covering Newark from April.

Norwegian’s Financial Results

This Thursday all eyes will be on Norwegian as it releases its annual results.

This has been brought forward by a week, after it revealed it is to raise funds from its shareholders through a rights issue. Norwegian has already indicated that it will report heavy losses.

Key will be comments from its auditors on its ability to continue to trade as a going concern. Investors also await progress of its plans to manage its still aggressive expansion of its fleet.

Also of note this week:

The European Union gives airlines a seven month deadline to comply with EU ownership laws in the event of a “no deal” Brexit. (Financial Times)

Finnair takes a look at its ongoing non-Schengen business lounge refurbishment and forthcoming Platinum Wing at Helsinki Airport. (Finnair Blue Wings)

The New York Times investigates the business and regulatory decisions behind the launch of the Boeing 737 MAX which was involved in the Lion Air crash last year. (New York Times)

Singapore Airlines selects its incumbent advertising agency TBWA and fellow Omnicom Group subsidiary PHD to carry out a major review of its brand identity, marketing and digital strategy. Don’t expect Singapore Girl to be retired. (Singapore Airlines)

Former Stobart Air Chief Executive Andrew Tinkler makes “a very preliminary, short and highly conditional outline contingency proposal” for a capital injection to Flybe, which has been rejected by the airline. (Financial Times)

Qantas acquires a near 20% stake in Australian charter airline Alliance Airlines, with a view to acquiring a majority stake, subject to regulatory approval. (Qantas)

Late Post Publication Updates

[Reserved for updates during the day.]

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