If AN is in trouble so is NZ. AN domestic contributes nearly 50% of group revenues and domestic revenues are always more stable than international so the fate of the group is closely tied with the fate of AN domestic.
AN offers great service and a quality product but has been starved of capital for a long time. It is important to remember that the last substantial capital investment was the new Sydney terminal ($160M), the previous one to that was the purchase of the first group of A320s in the late 80s. All subsequent fleet additions have been leased second hand aircraft.
In the same time QF has added 763s to the domestic fleet, built new terminals in Sydney and Melbourne, modified other terminals (eg CBR, ADL) as well as continuing to add to their international fleet not to mention the latest 31 plane order.
The capital starving of AN by TNT and News is coming home to roost in that a large part of the domestic fleet needs upgrading within 5 years. The only planes that have greater than 5 years left in the trunk domestic fleet are the A320s. This means 9 762s and 20+ 733s all have to be replaced. This is a mammoth ask but very important to the future of AN/NZ.
I have no doubt that Gary Toomey's background in Australian domestic aviation means he is all too aware of how necessary these steps are and I assume they were near the top of the pile on his desk when he commenced in Auckland the other week.