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Branson Wagers Willie Walsh £1 Mil Over VS Future  
User currently offlineLAXintl From United States of America, joined May 2000, 25171 posts, RR: 48
Posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days ago) and read 8564 times:

Funny stuff.

In response to IAG's Willie Walsh stating that a deal by Singapore Airlines to sell its shares in Virgin Atlantic could ultimately be the end of the Virgin airline brand, billionaire Richard Branson is willing to bet that his flagship airline has a future.

So Branson proposed a £1 million ($1.6 million) wager with the IAG chief that Virgin Atlantic would still be around 5-years from now.

As Branson put it “This is wishful thinking and totally misguided,” referring to the airline as “my baby.”
“Will BA never learn? Let’s see how much they believe this. Let them put their money where their mouth is.”


Story:
http://www.businessweek.com/articles...sons-million-pound-wager-on-virgin

=


From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
19 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineqf002 From Australia, joined Jul 2011, 2968 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 8268 times:

Come on, of course they'll still be around in five years.

I wonder if SRB would be willing to make a bet on whether the company will still be around in 20 years though.


User currently offlineTardis From UK - England, joined Dec 2012, 40 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 8226 times:

Virgin must survive. BA need the competition!

User currently offlineavek00 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 4369 posts, RR: 19
Reply 3, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 8141 times:

Well, once the US finalizes Open Skies deals with several countries VS presently flies to where Open Skies does not exist today, Delta could conceivably acquire VS, making it an American carrier. This move would have the benefit of leveraging Delta's fleet mix and labor costs.


Live life to the fullest.
User currently offlinelightsaber From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 13018 posts, RR: 100
Reply 4, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 7678 times:
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The reality is that LHR isn't growing and when the economy really turns up (signs are showing improvement), LHR just won't matter that much and thus VS will have a lower share of global revenue. I've never understood the fascination with SRB. If the UK wanted competition, they would expand LHR.

Quoting qf002 (Reply 1):
Come on, of course they'll still be around in five years.

I wonder if SRB would be willing to make a bet on whether the company will still be around in 20 years though.

My thoughts too. But will SRB be around in 20 years?   And what is Virgin post SRB?

Quoting avek00 (Reply 3):
Delta could conceivably acquire VS, making it an American carrier.

DL would do well with the slots.

Lightsaber



Societies that achieve a critical mass of ideas achieve self sustaining growth; others stagnate.
User currently offlinemoo From Falkland Islands, joined May 2007, 3928 posts, RR: 4
Reply 5, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 7648 times:

I read this the other day on the BBC news website, where there is a slightly different different slant on it - one short sentence made me view Branson in a poor light for the rest of the article:

Quote:

Sir Richard said that instead of suing BA for Mr Walsh's comments, he would put up £1m, to be distributed to BA staff should Virgin Atlantic cease to exist, if BA agreed to pay Virgin Atlantic staff the same amount should the brand still exist in five years.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-20665041

If you even momentarily considered suing a rival for some off the cuff comments made by its boss, when said comments are perfectly legitimate and part of basic free speech, then I would rather not give you time of day.

The rest of it is just a bad PR stunt by Branson.


User currently offlineLGWGate49 From Sudan, joined Nov 2009, 138 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 7529 times:

Well WW is betting SRB a "knee in the groin" in return!

He's pretty direct about his relationship with the Virgin boss:

"The IAG chief said he didn’t know Sir Richard very well but “on the limited occasions” he had met him he hasn’t seen anything that would “make me want to meet him again”."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/n...-Virgin-Atlantic-wont-survive.html



Look for the ridiculous in everything, and you will find it
User currently offlineAussieItaliano From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 442 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 7508 times:

Quoting moo (Reply 5):
If you even momentarily considered suing a rival for some off the cuff comments made by its boss, when said comments are perfectly legitimate and part of basic free speech, then I would rather not give you time of day.

Sure, but SRB actually won the lawsuit years ago and was awarded £1m, which means that whatever comments were made, they were not legitimate and part of basic free speech under British law, otherwise SRB would have lost.

Also, SRB didn't keep the money he won in that lawsuit, he distributed it to Virgin employees.

I don't think SRB is out to keep people from using their rights to free speech, but he is entitled to protect his business interests. And if British law gives him the right to sue a rival for comments made, then those comments made must have been damaging to SRB's interests in a way that goes beyond protected free speech.

I'm not saying that I think people should run to court whenever damaging comments are made, but when someone wins a lawsuit, I do have to think that there was some legitimate basis for the lawsuit.



LHR - The Capital of the World
User currently offlineanstar From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2003, 5193 posts, RR: 6
Reply 8, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 7460 times:

This is just wishful thinking from Willie Walsh.

Perhaps he should focus on fixing his basket case IBERIA before throwing stones at others.

DL as a 49% stakeholder in VS will hurt BA much more than the 49% owner SQ currentyl does as with DL, VS would likely join skyteam and the JV across the atlantic and therefore hurting BA's profits.


User currently offlinemoo From Falkland Islands, joined May 2007, 3928 posts, RR: 4
Reply 9, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 7402 times:

Quoting AussieItaliano (Reply 7):
Sure, but SRB actually won the lawsuit years ago and was awarded £1m, which means that whatever comments were made, they were not legitimate and part of basic free speech under British law, otherwise SRB would have lost.

Different lawsuit over different things - not the same as someone saying "I don't think *rival* will be around in five years".

Its this specific instance that I am referring to - suing should never have even been a consideration.

Incase anyone is wondering what this is all about, the Telegraph has a story on what Walsh actually said in context:

Quote:

“I can’t see Delta wanting to operate the Virgin brand because if they do what does that say about the Delta brand?" Mr Walsh said. “Delta believe they are the number one airline in the world, so what they would want to do is acquire the slots at Heathrow to enable them to have a strong presence at Heathrow.”
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/n...c-brand-could-soon-be-history.html

Nothing there that can be sued over. The fact that Branson even went there momentarily speaks boat loads.


User currently onlinetravelhound From Australia, joined May 2008, 934 posts, RR: 12
Reply 10, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 6989 times:

Quoting qf002 (Reply 1):
Come on, of course they'll still be around in five years.

I wonder if SRB would be willing to make a bet on whether the company will still be around in 20 years though

The bet would be a little more interesting if it was based upon VS being profitable in five years.


User currently offlineanstar From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2003, 5193 posts, RR: 6
Reply 11, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 6783 times:

So Walsh responds

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-20676667

Quote:

"I don't have £1m, so a knee in the groin, maybe - that would be as painful to him as it might be to me."

Deary me - both men just needs to keep their lips sealed and focus on their business interests rather than pissing contests.


User currently offlineFlyCaledonian From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2003, 2083 posts, RR: 3
Reply 12, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 6691 times:

Quoting AussieItaliano (Reply 7):
Sure, but SRB actually won the lawsuit years ago and was awarded £1m, which means that whatever comments were made, they were not legitimate and part of basic free speech under British law, otherwise SRB would have lost.

Also, SRB didn't keep the money he won in that lawsuit, he distributed it to Virgin employees.

I don't think SRB is out to keep people from using their rights to free speech, but he is entitled to protect his business interests. And if British law gives him the right to sue a rival for comments made, then those comments made must have been damaging to SRB's interests in a way that goes beyond protected free speech.

I'm not saying that I think people should run to court whenever damaging comments are made, but when someone wins a lawsuit, I do have to think that there was some legitimate basis for the lawsuit.

The "dirty tricks" lawsuit was a whole campaign waged by certain people in BA, including off the record briefings against VS, trying to poach customers, etc. Very different from Willie Walsh making a comment about VS still being here in five years! This is Branson's style all over - makes generalised comments that can be interpreted in a particular way (and that grabs a headline), but that require a competitor to give a detailed response that most of the general public won't (and can't) be interested in reading. Concorde was a classic example - SRB said sell it to us for the £1 you bought it for, which ignored the fact the much more complicated fact of a government keen to place the last few aircraft and wrap the programme up.

"Dirty Tricks" wasn't a legitimate way for BA to take VS on, and after that BA was very scared of public taking VS on. Willie Walsh has been the first person at the head of BA (and now at IAG) to say it as he sees it and to play Branson at his own game. So he knows that BA can't bet £1 million, whereas Branson the "overseas billionaire banker" (like that line) can, so he bets something that will hurt him (Walsh) as much as Branson - a knee in the groin.



Let's Go British Caledonian!
User currently offlinebennett123 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2004, 7567 posts, RR: 3
Reply 13, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 6570 times:

IMO, WW should take the bet, but say "make it £2M".

Not taking the bet makes it look like he was just hot air. Doubling would put SRB on the back foot.

Assuming that VS still around in 5 years, and that IAG have to pay out, the publicity now would probably be worth the potential future outlay.


User currently offlineFlyCaledonian From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2003, 2083 posts, RR: 3
Reply 14, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 6489 times:

Quoting bennett123 (Reply 13):
IMO, WW should take the bet, but say "make it £2M".

Not taking the bet makes it look like he was just hot air. Doubling would put SRB on the back foot.

Assuming that VS still around in 5 years, and that IAG have to pay out, the publicity now would probably be worth the potential future outlay.

Walsh is CEO of a publically listed company not an independently wealthy millionaire. He can't just make a £1 million bet, yet alone raise it to £2 million!



Let's Go British Caledonian!
User currently offlineneutrino From Singapore, joined May 2012, 606 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 6401 times:

Quoting qf002 (Reply 1):
I wonder if SRB would be willing to make a bet on whether the company will still be around in 20 years though.
Quoting Tardis (Reply 2):
My thoughts too. But will SRB be around in 20 years? And what is Virgin post SRB?

Its hard to say for sure any particular will airline will definately still be in business 2 decades hence.
Anything can suddenly happen. I remember that either Lee Kuan Yew or another minister said it before; to the effect that if having to choose between SIA & Changi Airport, they would opt for the latter's survival over the former.



Potestatem obscuri lateris nescitis
User currently offlineseansasLCY From Hong Kong, joined Mar 2007, 858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 6356 times:

Apparently Delta have purchased 49% for $360million. This is according to a journalist. https://twitter.com/Lebeaucarnews

BREAKING: New joint venture between @Delta and @VirginAtlantic adds 31 daily roundtrip flts between uk and north america.

BREAKING: @Delta adding 31 daily non-stop flights between UK and N. America in #VirginAtlantic deal critical to #DAL growing Euro biz.

Didn't SQ pay around $600million?


User currently offlinemoo From Falkland Islands, joined May 2007, 3928 posts, RR: 4
Reply 17, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 6286 times:

Quoting seansasLCY (Reply 16):

Apparently Delta have purchased 49% for $360million.

Well, now we know the going price for 31 LHR slots...


User currently offlineflyingalex From Germany, joined Jul 2010, 1016 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 6240 times:

Quoting seansasLCY (Reply 16):
Didn't SQ pay around $600million?
£600million actually, which is almost $1billion at present exchange rates.



Public service announcement: "It's" = "it is". To indicate posession, write "its." Looks wrong, but it's correct grammar
User currently offlinedocpepz From Singapore, joined May 2001, 1971 posts, RR: 3
Reply 19, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 6195 times:

SQ paid GBP600 mil when the GBP:SGD rate was 1:3 so they paid SGD1.8 bil
They sell it for US$360 mil, which is SGD 432 mil

OUCH.


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