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34 SPECIAL FEATURE

34 SPECIAL FEATURE TRANSPORT The New Face of airberlin at ITB Berlin airberlin CEO Stefan Pichler names new board members in run-up to the show Just days before ITB Berlin, airberlin CEO Stefan Pichler had largely completed the substantial restructuring of the airberlin Management Team. Two internationally experienced top executives were brought on board on February 22nd, 2016: Neil Mills was named as the new CSPO and Oliver Iffert as the new COO. Neil Mills (45) has been appointed Chief Strategy & Planning Officer (CSPO), taking over responsibility for Network Planning and Alliances, Procurement and the subsidiaries Leisure Cargo and airberlin technik as well as Facility Management. He will push the development of airberlin focusing on cost reduction and sustainable improvement of productivity. The proven expert in aviation industry started his career with easyJet in 1997. 2009 Neil became CFO with Fly Dubai, one of the fastest growing LCC’s in the world. After that he took over the CEO position with Spice Jet in India. Most recently he joined the Philippine Airlines Group as Chief Executive Advisor to lead their turnaround team. Oliver Iffert (46) was appointed Chief Operations Officer (COO) of airberlin leading Flight Operations, Cabin Crew, Network Operations, Airport Operations and Maintenance Systems. Oliver started his career as First Officer B737 with airberlin in 1997 and worked for LTU until 2004. After that he changed to Etihad Airways where he held various functions, most recently as Vice President Flight Operations. Captain Iffert brings more then 20 years of experience on board commercial airplanes and currently flies the Airbus A330/340. Stefan Pichler, CEO airberlin said, “We have already initiated the necessary actions to improve our profitability and reduce our costs and have generated some first success stories. We will continue to consistently follow this path. The rebuilding of the airberlin Management Board is an important element of the new strategy. With Neil Mills and Oliver Iffert we have gained two experienced airline executives with an international background, who will drive airberlin’s organisational development within their core business fields.” Stefan Pichler CEO, airberlin AIRBERLIN GERMANY’S MOST RELIABLE AIRLINE: 99.5% OF FLIGHTS FLOWN IN 2015 XL seats for XL comfort on board airberlin has the largest seat pitch of all airlines in Economy Class on transatlantic flights airberlin has reported highly positive results from the introduction of additional XL seats on its long-haul fleet. In September 2015, Germany’s second-largest airline started fitting an additional five Economy Class rows of XL seats on each of its 14 longhaul Airbus 330-200 aircraft. In these 48 XL seats, airberlin passengers enjoy 20 percent more legroom for improved comfort and faster boarding or disembarking. At around ITB BERLIN NEWS • Wednesday 9 th March 2016 91 cm (36 inches), airberlin thus has the largest seat pitch in the industry in Economy Class on transatlantic flights, according to the comparison site, Skytrax. “Whilst other airlines rely on Premium Economy, airberlin’s decision to offer XL seats in Economy Class at a relatively affordable price was absolutely right. The XL seats are very popular with our passengers, especially on long-haul tourist routes, and already have an average occupancy rate of over 80 percent. The seats are now the best-seller among our fee-based ancillary services. On our new long-haul routes to Boston, San Francisco and Havana we are also experiencing lively demand”, said Julio Rodriguez, Chief Commercial Officer at airberlin. Hall 25 / Stand 110 Germany’s second largest airline has again scored top marks for regularity, with 99.5% of services flown in 2015. In aviation, regularity is a measure of the number of flights flown in relation to flights cancelled. In spite of the strike actions that dominated the aviation sector, and concrete effects amongst the direct competition, airberlin was able to serve its passengers with exceptional reliability, as affirmed by the small number of cancelled flights compared with the industry average. Oliver Lackmann, Chief Flight Operations Officer at airberlin, said, “In addition to a first-class product and an attractive route network, airberlin has kept passengers happy with excellent reliability. We are constantly working to improve processes at our operations centre and other processes on the ground and in the air, so that we maintain this edge over the international competition”. airberlin scored among the world’s 15 most punctual airlines last year, according to the “on-time performance” (punctuality) score awarded by the website flightstats.com, a leading portal for flight data analysis. www.itb-berlin-news.com

TRANSPORT SPECIAL FEATURE 35 Singapore Airlines A350 © Airbus SAS Staying on Top Despite Tough Competition Bangkok Airways voted APAC’s Best Regional Airline by CAPA A New Benchmark Singapore Airlines Premium Economy among the best in the industry Singapore Airlines have a strong new selling point at ITB Berlin. The launch of the company’s new Premium Economy in the autumn of last year is considered in the industry as a new benchmark in terms of comfort. Singapore’s national carrier worked for two years on extensive research, investing some US million to produce what the airline considers as the “best product” in its category. The new seats are among the largest in Premium Economy, offering a space of 96.5 cm/38 inches. This distance is in fact equivalent to a business class seat of the nineties. This year, most of Singapore Airlines destinations will be equipped with the new Premium Economy. Meanwhile, the airline continues to expand its presence across the globe. Latest in SIA’s extensive network will be a new flight from Düsseldorf beginning in July. The new route will be served three times a week with a brand new Airbus A350 offering a three-class service (Business, Premium Economy and Economy). Düsseldorf is the third SIA destination in Germany. From September, the airline will be pioneering brand new international routes linking Singapore to Canberra in Australia as well as Wellington in New Zealand. Hall 26A / Stand 133 Named CAPA’s Best Asia Pacific Regional Airline of year 2015 and best Marketeer Airline for 2016, Bangkok Airways has managed to carve its market despite increased competition from other regular carriers as well as low cost airlines. Last year, Bangkok Airways flew over 5.2 million passengers, a growth of 10% over 2014. The carrier fleet increased to 33 aircraft with four new Airbus A319 and A320 aircraft as well as an ATR72- 600 being recently delivered. Four more ATR72-600’s are due for delivery over the next months. Indeed, Bangkok Airways has been surprisingly resilient. According to Peter Wiesner, Senior Vice President Network Management, Bangkok Airways positioning as a niche carrier is paying off. “We target passengers who are looking for a quality product and are not afraid to pay more for quality. We also work with a large number of codeshare partners. We work indeed with some 20 air partners. That gives us more flexibility than belonging to an alliance. For passengers flying further with us, we offer a connecting seamless product which guarantees smooth transfers and a constant quality”, explains Wiesner. The airline continues to look at expanding its network. It recently added a sixth daily frequency between Bangkok and Phnom Penh and has opened a daily connection between Phuket and Hat Yai, in Southern Thailand. Bangkok Airways expects also to be back to Vietnam after pulling out a decade ago. The carrier is eying Danang in Central Vietnam, which still lacks a direct flight to Bangkok despite its high potential as a resort and cultural destination. According to Wiesner, the airline is also studying the possibility of increasing its presence in Laos. Hall 26B / Stand 231 ITB BERLIN NEWS • Wednesday 9 th March 2016

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