AF wants Air Berlin to help it cover Eastern Europe
Air France wants Air Berlin to help it cover Eastern Europe, where it has a weak presence. Alexandre de Juniac, the French flag carrier’s chairman and CEO, tells ATW that such a partnership would be helpful, despite the fact that the airlines are in different alliances. Air Berlin became a oneworld member this spring. However, de Juniac acknowledges that any partnership depends on Etihad Airways, a majority shareholder in Air Berlin.
AF alliance SkyTeam has CSA Czech Airlines and Tarom as fellow members, but de Juniac still describes his company’s position in Eastern Europe as weak. “Germany is one of the biggest markets in Europe. It would be nice to have a feed with AB to Paris Charles de Gaulle,” he explains.
While launching a new cost-savings program, Transform 2015, and getting ready for tough talks with flight attendant unions in 2013, Air France will cautiously add capacity of 1% to 2% a year between 2012 and 2014.