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Dragonair (KA) Rebranding?  
User currently offlineLafite82 From Hong Kong, joined Jul 2012, 43 posts, RR: 0
Posted (1 year 10 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 9636 times:

KA is a wholly owned subsidiary of CX. There is an article in today's newspaper (South China Morning Post) which supposedly shows a KA employee posing in front of an aircraft image showing "Cathay Dragon" .

The article and the image can be seen via the following link:

http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/a...ictures-baffle-dragonair-employees

The image even shows a CX tail fin, so if the rebranding is true, looks like we may lose the KA's livery altogether !

36 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 31439 posts, RR: 85
Reply 1, posted (1 year 10 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 9643 times:
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Ben Sandlands commented on it a couple of weeks back - http://blogs.crikey.com.au/planetalk...s-new-and-less-new-hk-competitors/

User currently offlineWingtips56 From United States of America, joined Dec 2010, 449 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (1 year 10 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 9586 times:

Well, according to Wikipedia (I know, I know.....) CX will be transfering 6 A330 to KA this year. The re-branding, if it happened, would mean not having to repaint the planes in current KA livery. Just update the title decals. Just a thought .....


Worked for WestAir, Apollo Airways, Desert Pacific, Western, AirCal and American Airlines
User currently offlineCX Flyboy From Hong Kong, joined Dec 1999, 6642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 3, posted (1 year 10 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 9535 times:

Quoting Wingtips56 (Reply 2):
Well, according to Wikipedia (I know, I know.....) CX will be transfering 6 A330 to KA this year. The re-branding, if it happened, would mean not having to repaint the planes in current KA livery. Just update the title decals. Just a thought .....

CX A330s being transferred to KA has been happening over the last few years already. When done, most of the KA A330 fleet will be from CX's older low weight model A330s. The first of the six to join KA this year has already entered service with them in the current Dragonair paintjob but is the first to feature the new cabin.

Quoting Lafite82 (Thread starter):
The image even shows a CX tail fin, so if the rebranding is true, looks like we may lose the KA's livery altogether !

I didn't realise Dragonair had a livery!! Just a bit of paint on an otherwise white (Dirty grey) aircraft! 


User currently offlineLuftyMatt From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2009, 448 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (1 year 10 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 9469 times:

Quoting Wingtips56 (Reply 2):
The re-branding, if it happened, would mean not having to repaint the planes in current KA livery.

It would also mean the transfer wouldn't need to happen, as they'd be the same airline.



chase the sun
User currently offlineLafite82 From Hong Kong, joined Jul 2012, 43 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (1 year 10 months 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 9390 times:

Well it seems KA is not just getting old A330's frames from CX. A330-343E (MSN 1457) which I presume was originally ordered by CX, will be delivered new to KA on Q4.

User currently offlinejustinlee From China, joined Aug 2012, 332 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (1 year 10 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 9233 times:

Generally speaking, Dragon Air's cabin is a bit out-dated compared to Cathay. If they choose to use Cathay Dragon, I think it's a diminishing for Cathay's brand image.

What's more, in my understanding, Dragon Air is the regional and leisure travel brand for Cathay Pacific. It has a long-term market presence in Mainland China and won a good reputation in this region. I will say the Cathay Dragon is not a good idea.


User currently offlineCX Flyboy From Hong Kong, joined Dec 1999, 6642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 7, posted (1 year 10 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 9146 times:

Quoting LuftyMatt (Reply 4):
Quoting Wingtips56 (Reply 2):
The re-branding, if it happened, would mean not having to repaint the planes in current KA livery.

It would also mean the transfer wouldn't need to happen, as they'd be the same airline.

They would still not be the same airline but operate under seperate AOCs, with seperate cabin crew and cockpit crews.

Quoting Lafite82 (Reply 5):
Well it seems KA is not just getting old A330's frames from CX. A330-343E (MSN 1457) which I presume was originally ordered by CX, will be delivered new to KA on Q4.

Rumours are that this could be the first plane in the new scheme.

Quoting justinlee (Reply 6):
Generally speaking, Dragon Air's cabin is a bit out-dated compared to Cathay. If they choose to use Cathay Dragon, I think it's a diminishing for Cathay's brand image.

The new cabin for Dragonair is identical to Cathay's new regional cabin. Same colour seats and everything. The IFE StudioCX is StudioKA for them but otherwise its all the same.


User currently offlinecloudyapple From Hong Kong, joined Jul 2005, 2454 posts, RR: 10
Reply 8, posted (1 year 10 months 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 8912 times:

They did say the brand would be kept for a minimum of 6 years when Cathay took over Dragonair in 2006.

2006 + 6 = 2012



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User currently offline817Dreamliiner From Montserrat, joined Jul 2008, 2613 posts, RR: 2
Reply 9, posted (1 year 10 months 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 8882 times:

I think there was a thread about this a couple weeks back, though I think it got deleted...


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User currently offlinejonnyclark From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2011, 114 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (1 year 10 months 23 hours ago) and read 8523 times:

Quoting justinlee (Reply 6):

Generally speaking, Dragon Air's cabin is a bit out-dated compared to Cathay. If they choose to use Cathay Dragon, I think it's a diminishing for Cathay's brand image.


They have just launched a new interior cabin renewal program that fits nicely in line with the Cathay brand.

http://wp.me/p2mH8F-jS

I can see the Cathay Dragon brand happening, but I think these may have been pitch images for a rebrand and not anything concrete. The two airlines are fairly unique in the world, by that I mean two completely different brands doing both short haul and long haul.

Where is the strategic advantage in separating out the brand image? Whilst dragon air has good internal market value, internationally it's either not known or seen as an inferior product.



Jonny, commercial pilot & founder of Thedesignair
User currently offlineHawaiianBird From Germany, joined Jan 2013, 9 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (1 year 10 months 22 hours ago) and read 8307 times:
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Quoting jonnyclark (Reply 10):
The two airlines are fairly unique in the world, by that I mean two completely different brands doing both short haul and long haul.

As far as I am aware in pax operation at least KA only flies to intra-Asian destinations and no intercontinental flights, so I would not consider any of their destinations of being long-haul, just short and medium-haul.
Correct me if I am wrong.


User currently offline777way From Pakistan, joined Dec 2005, 6110 posts, RR: 4
Reply 12, posted (1 year 10 months 21 hours ago) and read 8219 times:

Why cant it be Cathay Pacific operated by Dragon Air like they do in Europe?

User currently offlinejustinlee From China, joined Aug 2012, 332 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (1 year 10 months 20 hours ago) and read 8094 times:

Quoting jonnyclark (Reply 10):
Where is the strategic advantage in separating out the brand image? Whilst dragon air has good internal market value, internationally it's either not known or seen as an inferior product.

CX doesn't fly to a lot of destinations in Mainland China, only Beijing and Shanghai. But KA has a much bigger presence in Mainland China. So the brand name Dragon Air is more famous than CX among average travelers. And Dragon Air is a little bit like a budget airline (in terms of service, product, milage, etc). It's a just like the idea of Singapore Airlines and Silk.


User currently offlinejonnyclark From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2011, 114 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (1 year 10 months 20 hours ago) and read 8078 times:

Don't get me wrong, I understand the regional network that Dragonair flies, but considering they are all Hong Kong bound, the passengers will undoubtably know the Cathay brand equally. When websites, entertainment options, magazines etc start aligning themselves between two brands, it makes sense for the actual brands to align too. Considering dragonair can act as feeder traffic, and vice versa, it is logical to tie the brands closer. I can't actually think of another airline anywhere in the world where their regional carrier doesn't reflect their international outfit.

... Anyone care to try and think of an exception?



Jonny, commercial pilot & founder of Thedesignair
User currently offlineCX Flyboy From Hong Kong, joined Dec 1999, 6642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 15, posted (1 year 10 months 20 hours ago) and read 8037 times:

Quoting 777way (Reply 12):
Why cant it be Cathay Pacific operated by Dragon Air like they do in Europe?

They would be opening a whole can or worms with regards to the unions and also the route rights they have. Dragonair cannot simply hand the routes over to CX. They would have to give them up and CX would have to reapply for them to be operated themselves and of course they might not get them back! There is Jetstar Hong Kong, Hong Kong Airlines and Hong Kong Express waiting in the wings.

Quoting jonnyclark (Reply 14):
Don't get me wrong, I understand the regional network that Dragonair flies, but considering they are all Hong Kong bound, the passengers will undoubtably know the Cathay brand equally. When websites, entertainment options, magazines etc start aligning themselves between two brands, it makes sense for the actual brands to align too. Considering dragonair can act as feeder traffic, and vice versa, it is logical to tie the brands closer. I can't actually think of another airline anywhere in the world where their regional carrier doesn't reflect their international outfit.

... Anyone care to try and think of an exception?

I totally agree. An alignment of the two brands makes total sense. Dragonair can be slowly sacrificed in order to make the Cathay brand stronger, especially in China where the Cathay brand is not particularly well known.

An exception is Silk Air and Singapore Airlines.


User currently offline777way From Pakistan, joined Dec 2005, 6110 posts, RR: 4
Reply 16, posted (1 year 10 months 20 hours ago) and read 8037 times:

Quoting justinlee (Reply 13):
It's a just like the idea of Singapore Airlines and Silk.

Both need to merge as well.


User currently offlineTreeHillRavens From Malaysia, joined Jun 2007, 403 posts, RR: 1
Reply 17, posted (1 year 10 months 15 hours ago) and read 6758 times:

Quoting justinlee (Reply 13):
And Dragon Air is a little bit like a budget airline (in terms of service, product, milage, etc).

I have flown KA many times and i don't think Dragonair is anything like a budget airline. They serve Häagen-Dazs in Y just like its bigger sister, CX and they serve generous foods even in Y. While the planes are pretty old and currently none of their A320-200 offer IFE, it is still a very decent airline and i found KA crews in Y to be more attentive and friendlier than CX's. And luckily, all their planes will be refurbished with news seats and all. So very soon KA will be just as good as CX, if not better.

KA is a very well known brand in this region. I personally do not wish to see the KA brand merge into CX. KA is special in its own way.

Quoting 777way (Reply 16):
Both need to merge as well.

No. They don't and thankfully it will not happen anytime soon. MI's operating cost is much lower than that of SIA's and the SIA Group is happy with the current arrangement.


User currently offlinePVG From Hong Kong, joined Dec 2004, 728 posts, RR: 2
Reply 18, posted (1 year 10 months 14 hours ago) and read 6516 times:

Quoting CX Flyboy (Reply 15):

They've needed to do something for while. I don't understand why you would have 2 brands offering the same service at the same price point? Either they give the brands 2 distinct images (1 premium/ 1 LCC). Or they merge them and offer a full spectrum under 1 brand.


User currently offlinecchan From New Zealand, joined May 2003, 1763 posts, RR: 2
Reply 19, posted (1 year 10 months 8 hours ago) and read 4775 times:

Quoting TreeHillRavens (Reply 17):
i found KA crews in Y to be more attentive and friendlier than CX's

Agreed.

Perhaps Cathay Dragon is just the first step in the brand integration. After a few years of operating under the Cathay Dragon brand, customers in mainland China would become more familiar with the Cathay brand. Then it maybe the time Dragon disappear altogether.


User currently offlineCX Flyboy From Hong Kong, joined Dec 1999, 6642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 20, posted (1 year 10 months 7 hours ago) and read 4658 times:

Quoting cchan (Reply 19):
Perhaps Cathay Dragon is just the first step in the brand integration. After a few years of operating under the Cathay Dragon brand, customers in mainland China would become more familiar with the Cathay brand. Then it maybe the time Dragon disappear altogether.

If I was a manager that is what I would aim to do eventually, once they had overcome the union integration issues and AOC+route rights merger.


User currently offlineLafite82 From Hong Kong, joined Jul 2012, 43 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (1 year 10 months 6 hours ago) and read 4608 times:

Quoting PVG (Reply 18)

Your comments make sense, however one really need to look at the background which necessitated CX buying out KA. It seemed like a strategic move on CX's part, but there was also an underlining political issue !

By 2005, CNAC and CITIC Pacific (both being Chinese enterprises and controlled by the Chinese Govt) owned something like 70% of KA. There were talks that the Chinese Govt had intended to develop KA as the second Hong Kong carrier. If CX did not buyout KA, they would have found themselves competing head on against an airline with an unlimited budget and political clout. It seemed that CX was "forced" to buy KA to maintain its superior presence (or survival, which ever way you want to look at it) in Hong Kong.

CX has always maintained that KA will operate as a separate entity within the Cathay Pacific Group, but everything KA did which competed against CX were put on the chopping block. KA's service to TYO and BKK were short lived, and expansion plans to SEL, SYD and USA were not allow to materialize ! Currently, the only common destinations between the two carriers, apart from SHA and PEK, is TPE and MNL ! Let's face it, KA will only be allowed routes that big brother CX does not want !

KA is hugely successful but because of its network, will always be considered a regional carrier. I feel CX's plan is to use KA to feed its international network, much like the relationship between SQ and MI.

Justinlee has correctly pointed out that KA is well known in China but not the CX brand, and with more and more affluent Chinese traveling overseas, it is inevitable that CX wants a bigger piece of the pie. The re-branding will allow more Chinese to know the CX connection via HKG. As far as a merger is concerned, I don't see this happening, at least not in the immediate future !


User currently offlinecchan From New Zealand, joined May 2003, 1763 posts, RR: 2
Reply 22, posted (1 year 10 months 5 hours ago) and read 4508 times:

Just wish to ask: is the Cathay Dragon brand something that is definitely going to happen (and when?), or is this just another a-net rumour?

User currently offlineCX Flyboy From Hong Kong, joined Dec 1999, 6642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 23, posted (1 year 10 months 4 hours ago) and read 4446 times:

Quoting cchan (Reply 22):
Just wish to ask: is the Cathay Dragon brand something that is definitely going to happen (and when?), or is this just another a-net rumour?

Well it isn't just a rumour. Those photos have been produced professionally and they have admitted that they are looking at a number of rebranding options so although the name and scheme in the leaked images may not be the final choice, it does seem as though something is in the works.

Dragonair has launched new crew uniforms which although different to the CX ones, do look similar. The cabins have been revamped to be identical to the CX regional ones as well and likewise for the IFE. An aircraft experior revamp is simply the next logical step.


User currently offlinejustinlee From China, joined Aug 2012, 332 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (1 year 10 months ago) and read 4240 times:

Quoting TreeHillRavens (Reply 17):
I have flown KA many times and i don't think Dragonair is anything like a budget airline. They serve Häagen-Dazs in Y just like its bigger sister, CX and they serve generous foods even in Y. While the planes are pretty old and currently none of their A320-200 offer IFE, it is still a very decent airline and i found KA crews in Y to be more attentive and friendlier than CX's.

I agree. But currently the KA's hard product can't be compared to CX's, especially the Business Class.

Quoting Lafite82 (Reply 21):
If CX did not buyout KA, they would have found themselves competing head on against an airline with an unlimited budget and political clout. It seemed that CX was "forced" to buy KA to maintain its superior presence (or survival, which ever way you want to look at it) in Hong Kong.

And then HX and UO came, competition is always there!


25 davidho1985 : Dragonair's brand is much much much more stronger than Cathay Pacific in China, if CX really need to rebrand Dragonair, CX's livery + Dragonair's name
26 Post contains links and images 777way : This was done by someone whnen CX decided to buy KA.
27 zeke : As other have been saying, as the leases on the KA A330s came up, they were replaced with the "light TOW" CX A330s, these airframes were relatively l
28 justinlee : Yeah..Yeah...I mean...it's a little bit budget than CX...
29 CX Flyboy : Doesn't seem to be happening now with four of KA's own A330s due to be returned to the leasing company this year. Funnily enough, B-LAA and B-LAB are
30 davidho1985 : In many case, CX's services are more budget-style than KA, For example, on flights to Taipei, CX serve hotdog (something like that) while KA serve fu
31 dank : I think Zeke's point was that the mainland Chinese full service carriers do not provide the service levels that the majority of other East and Southe
32 Post contains images davidho1985 : I am based in Hong Kong and travel a lot on both CX and KA. Following are the meals I got in these few years. KA's Breakfast onboard Hong Kong to Bei
33 TreeHillRavens : And this will soon change with all the new seats coming... KK ? As in BKI ? Noticed the same! Agreed!
34 justinlee : Firstly, these meals illustrated can't reflect the average standard of KA. Only HKG-PEK and HKG-PVG will be served with premium catering. If you woul
35 jetsetter629 : Just look at their route map and the yeilds they produce - DAC, KTM, MNL, HKT, PNH, BLR
36 zeke : No, the leased A330s aircraft are being returned, I was talking about aircraft that are owned by CX/KA. The weights we are interested in on inta asia
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