Welcome to our Monday Briefing for the week beginning 7 October 2019.
100 Years Of KLM
Today marks 100 years since the formation of KLM. As KLM is keen to point out it is the oldest airline to operate under one name.
The first flight wasn’t until May 1920 when, in conjunction with Air Travel & Transport Ltd (a predecessor airline to BA), it flew from Croydon to Amsterdam.
In its 100 year history KLM has played a significant role in UK aviation, thanks to the close proximity of its Amsterdam hub and coverage of UK regional airports. It has also been a pioneer with its transatlantic joint-venture with Northwest Airlines and the first (if not always harmonious) major pan-European merger with Air France.
History could have taken a very different course had BA merged with KLM. Talks in 1992 and 2000 both fell through. IAG CEO Willie Walsh has never hidden the fact that this is a deal that should have happened and wouldn’t have fallen through on his watch.
In the future we can expect much greater co-operation between KLM and Virgin Atlantic with a combined transatlantic joint-venture with Delta and a frequent flyer partnership.
KLM is marking its centenary with a TV advertising campaign in the UK.
You can also explore more of KLM’s history on a dedicated microsite.
Also of note this week:
Qantas introduces the first of its refurbished Airbus A380 aircraft with a “refreshed” First Class cabin and new business class and premium economy seats and Upper Deck lounge. (Qantas)
Qantas and Virgin Australia battle to secure scarce slots at Tokyo Haneda airport. (Sydney Morning Herald)
Virgin Atlantic continues its lobbying for more Heathrow slots after a third runway with a primer on how Heathrow slots work. (Virgin Atlantic)
Late post publication updates:
[Reserved for updates throughout the day]