Starbow Airlines Ghana has joined the African Airlines Association (AFRAA) as a member. The airline’s membership was approved by the Association at its ordinary 157th Executive Committee meeting held in Nairobi, Kenya late April 2012. Three airlines and four air transport related service providers were approved as members and partners respectively of AFRAA. “They include Camair-Co [Cameroon], Starbow Airlines [Ghana] and ECAir [Republic of Congo] as members of AFRAA and Aero Industrial Sales [AIS], Aero Mechanical Services [FLYHT], Mercator and IBS Software Services as partners of AFRAA,” as confirmed by AFRAA. This brings to 34 and 26 respectively the number of member airlines and partners of AFRAA, it added. AFRAA is a trade association of airlines which hail from the nations of the African Union. Founded in Accra, Ghana, in 1968, and today headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, the primary purposes of AFRAA are to foster commercial and technical co-operation among African airlines and to represent their common interests. The airline also has an arrangment with MYN Mobile Money to allow its subscribers the choice to pruchase their tickets through that mobile option.
Starbow Airlines is re-colouring its engine nacelles from white to Starbow-violet.
Airline Brand NewsPosted by The Blog Owner Tue, May 01, 2012 10:20:44 Bingo Airways is a new low cost carrier, based in Poland. Decorated in the Polish national colours this distinctive livery design will officially put into operations from May 10, 2012.
Corsairfly (Corsairfly.com) (Paris-Orly) is going back to its roots, rebranding as Corsair International with an imposing new livery. The first aircraft has not yet been painted, but an Airbus A330-200 is expected to be repainted this summer.
The French airline was established in 1981 and started operations on May 17, 1981 as Corse Air International. It was founded by the Corsican Rossi family and was acquired by Nouvelles Frontières, a French tour operator, in 1990 and the name was changed to Corsair. Worldwide traffic rights were obtained in 1991. In 2000 TUI AG, one of the world’s leading tour operator groups, took over Nouvelles Frontières. In 2004, Corsair aircraft were repainted in the above TUI colors using the Corsairfly name. On March 22, 2012, the airline announced it was changing its name to Corsair International.
Dutch beer brewery Heineken might profit of Kingfisher's financial troubles. Kingfisher's owner Vija Mallya could be forced soon to give up his majority stakeholder's position in United Breweries as that company vouches for loans to Kingfisher. In case Vija sells his stakes, Heinenken will then become the biggest stakeholder in United Breweries.
Mandala Airlines (Jakarta) which suspended operations on January 13, 2011 due to financial issues, has a new look and a new investor – Tiger Airways (Singapore). Tiger Airways now controls 33 percent of Mandala’s stock. Operations will be relaunched under the Tiger Airways brand on April 5. The initial route will be from Jakarta to Medan.
Japan Airlines-JAL (Tokyo) has announced it will take delivery of its first Boeing 787-8 on March 25, 2012, and the aircraft will be flown from Everett to Tokyo (Narita) by JAL pilots on the following day.
JAL’s first commercial 787 flight will also be the first ever nonstop flight to connect Boston with Asia when JAL uses it to launch the new service between Tokyo (Narita) and Boston on April 22, 2012. JAL will later this year, also use this super-efficient aircraft to start yet another first nonstop service between a US city and Asia with the launch of direct flights between Tokyo (Narita) and San Diego. The 787 is scheduled to be deployed on routes between Tokyo and Beijing, Moscow, New Delhi and Singapore as soon as subsequent aircraft are delivered and all necessary preparations are completed.
The first JAL 787 will depart from PAE at 1600 (4 pm) local time on March 26 and arrive at Tokyo (Narita) at 1830 (6:30 pm) on March 27.
JAL’s 787 Dreamliner is configured in two classes with 42 seats in business and 144 seats in economy. The airline will fit its newest Executive Class JAL SHELL FLAT NEO seats that are 5 cm (2 inches) wider (than the seats now fitted on JAL’s Boeing 777s), in a 2-2-2 configuration so that customers are either seated by the window or along the aisle. Lavatories in Executive Class also feature a special warm-water Toto Washlet*1 jointly developed by companies Toto, JAMCO and Boeing. The 144 Economy Class seats have 2 cm (0.8 inches) wider space than current seats and arranged in a 2-4-2 configuration.
According to the airline, some of the highlights of the revolutionary aircraft are:
・30% larger windows than a Boeing 767 allow for more light into the cabin and a greater view of the outside even for passengers seated in the middle sections.
・Electronically dimmable windows allow customers to adjust the amount of light entering the cabin, and it replaces conventional shades that either completely shut out or let in external light.
・Taking advantage of the kaleidoscope of colors afforded by the new LED lights, JAL’s original onboard lighting design creates a soothing in-flight atmosphere that would evoke a sense of the four seasons in Japan, such as pink hues of cherry blossoms in spring. The lighting is also used to create a more conducive environment at the right timing for a sound slumber and a refreshed wakening, as well as to make in-flight meals more appetizing.
・Higher ceilings and lower cabin pressure are subtle enhancements that make a noticeable difference to customer comfort, especially on long-haul flights. The ceiling of the 787 Dreamliner is approximately 14 cm (5.5 inches) higher than a Boeing 767 aircraft (comparing the height of the economy class section) while the maximum cabin altitude is also lower at 1,800 meters which reduces passenger fatigue.
・A brand new type of in-flight entertainment will be introduced onboard JAL’s 787 Dreamliner, called SKY MANGA which reflects a distinctive part of the Japanese culture. There will be more than 30 titles of Japanese comics available in electronic versions on JAL’s in-flight entertainment system initially, with expansion to English versions planned for the near future.
Iberia Express (Madrid) despite protests and strikes by the Iberia pilots and cabin staff, as planned, launched low-fare domestic operations today (March 25) in Spain. With four older Airbus A320s, Iberia's spinoff Iberia Express commenced operations from the Madrid hub to Alicante, Malaga, Palma de Mallorca and Seville.
Airline Brand NewsPosted by The Blog Owner Fri, March 23, 2012 15:29:08 According the French news paper La Tribune, Air France is again considering to establish a Low Cost Carrier (LCC) to compete against price fighters like Ryanair, Norwegian and easyJet. The new airline could be based on the Transavia.com brand though this company is not yet ready to become a true LCC as its prices are yet too high: 5 cent per seat (excluding fuel). All airlines with a seat price of 4 cent and higher cannot be rated as a low budget airline.
In the past Air France has been considering to start a LCC for several times. British Airways and KLM have tried to establish low cost airlines before but these were not successful. Qantas is succesful with Jetstar. The problem with premium airlines who set up LCCs is the division of routes.
Airline Brand NewsPosted by The Blog Owner Tue, March 20, 2012 22:53:43 A sneak preview of the new livery of the Iranian airline, Shahand Airlines. The MD80, parked in Istanbul, photographed by Ilgaz Deger.
Airberlin (Berlin) today (March 20) officially joined oneworld®, adding the second largest airline in Germany and the sixth largest in Europe to the airline alliance.
Niki (Vienna), the Austrian member of the airberlin group, joined oneworld as an affiliate member.
The joining ceremony at Berlin was the first airline media event held at the new Berlin Brandenburg Airport, which will be Airberlin’s new home base and Europe’s newest hub, when it opens on June 3, 2012.
Those attending were also the first to see an aircraft in the front of the new airport terminal – with the first Airberlin aircraft adorned with the oneworld alliance livery, an Airbus A330-200, and one of the airline’s Boeing 737-800 making a special visit.
Members of the alliance include Airberlin, American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines-JAL, LAN Airlines, QANTAS Airways, Royal Jordanian and S7 Airlines, and around 20 affiliates including Niki, American Eagle, Dragonair, LAN Argentina, LAN Ecuador and LAN Peru. Malaysia Airlines is on track to join later in 2012, with India’s Kingfisher Airlines also a member elect. Málev Hungarian Airlines and Mexicana are inactive members of the alliance.
Jet Airways (Mumbai) will retire the Jetlite brand on March 25. Jetlite operates 19 Boeing 737 aircraft.
The company issued the following statement:
As part of a strategic rebranding exercise, Jet Airways, India’s premier international airline, will consolidate its low fare service products under the JetKonnect brand to simplify the group’s service proposition and enhance brand recall. Thus, effective March 25, the erstwhile JetLite and Jet Airways Konnect services will operate under the JetKonnect brand, enabling guests to avail of a single superior in-flight product in the full service (Jet Airways) and low-fare (JetKonnect) categories.
Jet Airways (India) Limited and JetLite (India) Limited, will continue as distinct business entities operating under their own airline operating permits. All low-fare operations will be consolidated under the JetKonnect brand. The Jetlite aircraft will be repainted in the brand of JetKonnect.
“In an attempt to achieve brand consistency, JetKonnect will be the dedicated low fare service with a mixed fleet of Boeings and ATR aircraft to operate on metro, tier II and III routes.
The aircraft will be duly painted in JetKonnect colours over time. JetKonnect will offer Premiere services on certain routes where guests may enjoy service identical to that enjoyed by Premiere guests on Jet Airways. This will be further expanded in a phased manner. The cockpit and cabin crew will don the same uniform as their counterparts from Jet Airways. Some JetKonnect flights will operate under the S2 code, while others will have flight numbers prefixed by the 9W code. 9W and S2 will also continue their existing Codeshare agreement enabling guests to enjoy seamless connectivity between India and the world.
A gradual rebranding of the JetKonnect brand would be manifest on letterheads, the JetKonnect website, boarding passes, tickets, stationery. Signages at all check-in and ticketing counters will have dual branding reflecting the existing Jet Airways and the new JetKonnect logos. Difference in fares between the premier Jet Airways and JetKonnect will also be reflected on the website and all visible communication avenues. Economy guests onboard JetKonnect flights will continue to be offered a range of refreshments from Jet Cafe, JetKonnect’s buy-on-board meal service.
Effective March 26, 2012 guests to jetlite.com would be automatically redirected to the new, re-branded jetkonnect.com.”
US Airways Group Inc. (NYSE: LCC), the fifth-biggest U.S. airline by traffic, has registered a slew of Internet-domain names that suggest a merger effort with AMR Corp., parent of American Airlines, is imminent.
The domains include American-USAirways.com, USandAA.com and Oneworldoneairline.com.
"The purchase of these domain names, along with any potential transaction names, is simply a step to ensure others do not use our marks in a way that might negatively impact our brand," US Airways said in a statement, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Domain Name Wire reported the registrations on Sunday.
US Airways said in January that it was assessing a bid for AMR, which filed for bankruptcy protection in November. It hired Milstein & Co., Barclays PLC and law firm Latham & Watkins LLP to advise a potential merger.
American is the country's No. 3 airline by traffic, and a merger of US Airways and AMR would create an entity that would rival United Continental (NYSE: UAL) is size.
Delta Air Lines Inc. (NYSE: DAL), the second-biggest U.S. carrier, and private-equity firm TPH Capital are also a potential bidder for AMR.
Both US Airways and Delta beat forecasts for their fourth-quarter earnings, as higher fares and fuller planes overcame rising fuel prices. US Airways reported a net profit of 13 cents a share, beating a projected 3 cents a share. The airline saw revenue increase by 8.5 percent, while average fuel price rose 20 percent. Delta had a net profit of 45 cents per share, beating a 38-cents-a-share forecast.
"The airlines are not flooded with surplus seats," Bob McAdoo, a senior research analyst at Avondale Partners, said in January.
Shares of US Airways were up 12 cents to $7.01 Tuesday afternoon. Delta was up 10 cents to $9.29.
Airline Brand NewsPosted by The Blog Owner Tue, March 13, 2012 22:18:06 WOW Air the new airline in Iceland has unveiled their WOW Force One livery design scheme proving this paintshop picture. A nice, slik and cool aircraft livery design. The airline is leasing 2 x Airbus A320s from Avion Express. The low-fare airline is due to operate by June 2012. www.wowair.is
Malaysia Airlines has unveiled the design and specifications of its first Airbus A380-800 aircraft. The aircraft, to be delivered in the middle of June, will have a new livery on its exterior, said the airline. The aircraft will have 494 seats in a three-class configuration - eight in first class, 66 in business and 420 in economy. The business class seats, together with 70 economy seats, will be on the aircraft's upper deck. The A380 will be put into service on 1 July on thrice-weekly flights between Kuala Lumpur and London. "The aircraft is currently with Airbus for final touches before a handover to us," added a spokesman. First class seats on the aircraft will have a seat pitch of 85 inches (216cm) and a 87-inch lie-flat bed. The aircraft will also be fitted with the Thales in-flight entertainment system and seats in all classes will have a USB port and a satellite telephone facility.
This movie shows the paintjob of only a part of the new livery:
The carrier is also planning to operate its second A380 on the Kuala Lumpur-London route and to fly its third aircraft on the Kuala Lumpur-Sydney route.
"The investment in this latest aircraft, its technology, futuristic style and innovative design in cabin comfort are our initiatives to ensure that our passengers continue to experience an exciting new level of comfort, luxury and convenience. This is the identity that will move us from 'traditional classic' to 'premium contemporary' in our efforts to position Malaysia Airlines as a preferred premium carrier," said the carrier's chief executive Ahmad Jauhari Yahya. The carrier is scheduled to receive five of its six A380s on order this year.
MetJet (Green Bay) is a Wisconsin-based public tour operator, which was funded by local business leaders and individuals that are dedicated to providing affordable nonstop air service between underserviced cities (primarily Green Bay) and key markets. The company was incorporated on March 23, 2007 with shares issued on April 12, 2011.
"MetJet has been incorporated with the intention of providing the 540,000 people within Northeast Wisconsin with less expensive nonstop flights to key tourism and business destinations, initially Orlando / Central Florida. MetJet, Inc. does not intend to be an airline, rather than a non-asset based tour provider that charters flights from existing air carriers. MetJet intends to sell tickets on these flights through the company's website (www.metjet.net), area travel agencies and local corporations."
The company is taking reservations for charters starting on May 25 with wet leased Boeing 737-800s (operated by Sun Country Airlines?) operating from Green Bay to both Minneapolis/St. Paul and Orlando.
Michael Heisman owns 50% of the shares with other shareholders and corporate shares holding the other 50% share.
Estonian Air (Talinn) has taken delivery of the first 76-seater Embraer 170. The new arrival landed at Tallinn Airport yesterday (February 22). ERJ 170-100 ES-AEA (msn 17000093, ex OH-LEE) was delivered to Estonian Air under a lease agreement with Finnair (Helsinki). The aircraft is the first one carrying the new livery announced a week ago. Altogether Estonian Air will get four Embraer ERJ-170s aircraft from Finnair.
“The new livery is part of Estonian Air brand renewal to emphasize the company’s important attributes: comfort, smartness, reliability and positively surprising. New livery includes the well-known and traditional Estonian Air colors, which have became very popular among our customers, but presents them in a fresh and modern way. Estonian national flower – the cornflower – ornaments have been added as well as a new rising line, which covers Estonian Air fresh brand concept and symbolizes being forward-looking and innovative.”
Dreamers never stop dreaming. But what distinguishes successful dreamers from ordinary dreamers is that, successful dreamers move beyond just dreaming , and allow their dreams to push them to take a stand and make a mark. His dream even at a tender was to own and operate a very successful airline.
The dream of Dr. Brock Friesen, Chief Executive Officer of Starbow Airlines Ghana, is one that has begun to spark a domestic air transport revolution in the country, giving the domestic airlines industry a competition that will bode well for domestic air travelers in the country.
But as the adage goes that successful dreamers never had their dreams realised on a silver platter, so has the dream of Dr. Friesen never saw the light of day until it went through the fiery furnace of determination.
The success story of Dr. Friesen is encapsulated in the very family background that never placed him on his comfort zone, but pushed and kept him on his toes until his dream was achieved. But like all other successful people, their stories can never be told any better than themselves.
“I grew up in Vancouver Canada, the son of German immigrant parents of modest means, that were determined that I would get the best education,” Dr. Friesen began his story, with a candid admission that depicts the earnestness of his humble beginnings.
Unlike others, Dr. Friesen allowed his aerospace career dream to push him to beyond the limit of his youthful life, where at the age of 18, Friesen invented the first singled engine hovercraft and sold the patents to Boeing aircraft.
But Dr. Friesen’s life was positively impacted by several people that eventually opened him up as a man of several parts, whose intellectual acumen has transcended the bounds just an inventor to a multifaceted entrepreneur.
His professors in university inspired him to change course from engineering to economics, which he did. Having started his working life as a policy advisor to the British Columbia Minister of Energy, Friesen quickly discovered he would rather work for the international companies that he was negotiating with on behalf of the government.
The old adage that behind every successful man, is a woman, has really proven to be true after all, and has found evidence in the turning point of Dr. Friesen’s life as a more successful entrepreneur manager in a manner that laid the foundation for his success.
“My wife suggested that I take a year off and do an MBA at IMD in Switzerland which I did,” he said, which later helped him to land a lucrative job in Canadian Pacific Airlines, a privately owned airline serving six continents from Vancouver.
Dr. Friesen has scored high points in his contribution to the airlines industry, transforming a chronically unprofitable international route network into a high profitable one for Canadian Airlines; contributed in opening the first commercial air route from North America over Siberia to China; and many other highly successful joint ventures including between Canadian Airlines and Japan Airlines, Qantas, American, Lufthansa, British Airways, and Cathay Pacific.
His vision and mission behind Starbow Airlnes Ghana are amazing and clear—the ability to understand and tap into the incisive business analysis of Lufthansa Consulting which saw West Africa as a fast-growing economy, but a much underserved West African aviation market.
Dr. Friesen believes Ghana has the natural resources and human capital to lead growth in West Africa, hence the birth of Starbow Airlines Ghana. Starbow Airlines has come to stay, thanks to the vision of a man whose philosophy is rooted in the work ethic of northern Germany, which recognizes hard work as the theme of daily living, where respect in society is gained through hard work and economic success, and where laziness, dishonesty, and conspicuous consumption are forbidden.
Dr. Friesen’s life can be said to be a principle for success in itself, as he believes success comes from vision and hard work, and conscious of the fact that most business decisions are made based on rigorous analysis and evaluation, and not only gut feeling.
But he has also made a statement more profound—that those who can combine strategy and sharp quantitative skills, are most likely to succeed. No wonder, Dr. Freisen has singled out Warren Buffet as his role model, which explains where his entrepreneurial umbilical cord is connected.
To say Dr. Friesen is a workaholic is not an understatement, but it does not deny him the chance to balance life between work and leisure. And indeed, he is neither a dull boy, nor a lazy one, which is why notwithstanding his busy schedules; he still has time for quality leisure.
He does not only love the sea and wishes he could live on the waterfront with his family. He is also a licensed sea Captain, who believes Ghana has fantastic sea and wind, but needs sailboats. “My wife would say that airline passion is also my hobby. We both try to keep fit in the gym.”
Dr. Friesen believes that Ghana has some of the most beautiful beach fronts in the world, but also thinks the tourism potential has hardly been touched. That is the candid view of an entrepreneur who also sees Ghana’s tourism potential as a neglected goldmine.
By Evans KORANTENG
Starbow Airlines BAe 146-300, 9G-SBC. Branding and design by Lila Design Associates BV.