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a350lover
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IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Wed Jan 20, 2021 8:14 pm

More than 15 months after first IB announced plans to buy its main rival in Madrid (Air Europa), today local News in Spain and IB internally confirmed the news already known by the majority of the industry: discounted price at 500M€, to be paid in 6 years time, and all dependent on the approval of the EU Authorities as well as the SEPI (Spanish entity which entered in the capital of UX with public loans in order to "rescue" the airline during the development of the covid).

https://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news ... nted-price

Now... IAG has a bit of a mix of airlines/brands, most of them coincident and "repetitive" in Spain:

    BA: London. Long-haul, worldwide presence

    IB: Madrid. Long-haul, heavily dependent on South America
    EI: Dublin. to USA

And then... all the mix of the Spanish/Mediterranean markets:
    VY: Barcelona and Spain focused. Secondarily, also heavy in ORY. Aiming to be a global lowcost for Europe like FR/EZY. Never really became that
    IBExpress: MAD thinner short haul routes
    ANE: MAD even thinner than I2/Regional markets
    LEVEL: just BCN Long haul, USA/Argentina

And on top of all that now Air Europa which is pretty much the same as Iberia. To me, a bit less Spanish and more European, with a fresher brand, less-legacy, more millennial, less focused in one market. Some people say UX could overtake LEVEL. Some think LEVEL could replace UX. IB could also just get all the UX fleet and paint the Boeings in IB colors although they've been all-Airbus fleet for quite a few years now.

Do really IAG need all these airlines/brands? Is it keeping all of them alive cost-effective?

What are your thoughts?
 
aviator2000
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Wed Jan 20, 2021 9:36 pm

It's clear that at least one or two brands will dissappear in Spain, either merged with another or simply stopped existing. Some time ago, around 2019, there where very strong rumours of a possible LEVEL/Vueling merger in order to consolidate their brand in BCN. However with the pandemic and LEVEL Europe going bust, I see this less and less likely.

Madrid-wise, I'd expect Iberia and Air Europa to operate as separate brands at least for a nother full year. After that, we'll see what happens, but I really can't see IAG making big brand movements during the uncertainty of the pandemic.
 
onwFan
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Wed Jan 20, 2021 10:46 pm

I think we might see the Level brand being discontinued first, because they only have 4 aircraft now & all their flights are already operated by IB (IINM all the short haul & OpenSkies routes has been discontinued?). They could move the A332s back to IB. I wouldn’t be surprised to see UX taking over these long haul from BCN using their B787s.

I guess they would try to use IB metal entirely on competitive routes that demand a more premium offering, such as MAD-GRU/EZE/SCL/LIM/BOG/UIO/GYE, etc. and leave RIO, ASU, MVD, VVI, secondary Brazil/Argentina & some Central Am/Caribbean to UX. Removal of replication on routes will also make sense. Retaining ‘Air Europa’ as IAG’s pan-European LCC brand also also sounds appealing, like LH’s ‘Eurowings’. Not sure about the practical implications of it...

The combined IB/UX short-haul fleet will hopefully help them sustain daily frequencies on some European routes, and match the competition to places like Germany & Central Europe where IB has typically struggled.
 
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Rossiya747
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Wed Jan 20, 2021 10:58 pm

What if they merged Vueling and Level? With Norwegian not coming back to the transatlantic market and even worse, higher fares from the NYC area (where I'm at), I'd love another low-cost airline here. Plus, a Vueling A330 would look pretty cool.
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Corpsnerd09
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Wed Jan 20, 2021 11:16 pm

Get rid of LEVEL entirely and use the Air Europa brand, staff, aircraft, certificate, etc, anything else they acquired with the LEVEL service... Using Air Europa's already known branding in Latin America and among Latin Americans in Europe to achieve the goal they set out with LEVEL?

Just a thought
 
Galwayman
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Wed Jan 20, 2021 11:53 pm

The strength of IAG is the variety of brands but 2 of the brands are duds - LEVEL and Vueling are easily dumped , A Vueling A330 would be the most depressing travel experiences in the world .

IAG needs a more Eastern European base/career, possibly WAW to cover Asia . BA's Asia network is substandard . Without a proper Asia network IAG will just become a feeder for Qatar going East ...
 
yuomi
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 12:32 am

Galwayman wrote:
The strength of IAG is the variety of brands but 2 of the brands are duds - LEVEL and Vueling are easily dumped , A Vueling A330 would be the most depressing travel experiences in the world .

IAG needs a more Eastern European base/career, possibly WAW to cover Asia . BA's Asia network is substandard . Without a proper Asia network IAG will just become a feeder for Qatar going East ...


Pre-pandemic, Vueling account(ed) for 21% of ALL IAG passenger traffic. With >125 frames and many on order, they're no hole-in-the-wall outfit that's easily disposed of. Yes, they are a deeply uncomfortable travel experience w/ 0 service, but they're very competitively priced and do exactly what the people flying with them want. Also, their network (through gritted teeth) is remarkably well thought through.

I don't really understand the E.Europe point. With ME3 plus LOT having a pretty well developed Asian network, I can't see the value in WAW. Qatar are quite happy w/ IAG carriers feeding them going east, because it's return on their investment.

Certainly coming out of Covid, I can't think of any glaring omissions for BA in Asia, but it's going to take a while and things settling before demands return to anything like a suitable level to gauge.
 
eurotrader85
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 8:49 am

If the situation is still the same (please correct me if it's changed) then VY has the other issue that union rules require the brand to be distinct etc, so rebranding/merging it in UX colours etc won't work, further expanding the hub foot print of VY outside Spain is difficult with labour rules.

I agree with the points made about Level though. It hasn't really 'taken off' and there is not much left of it anyway, so it could be rebranded and thrown into a UX platform.

Long and short of it, not sure if IAG really know how the world will look post-pandemic. Will we be back to a surging growth with flights to every corner of the planet and demand for low cost long-haul, or will the global economy, and in turn commercial aviation, take a battering with a much longer cycle to get to 2019 numbers, and thus it's better to park UX as a separate entity defending slots and traffic at MAD while this is all worked out?
 
Jomar777
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 8:54 am

LEVEL came about as way to compete with the likes of Air Europa and, to an extent - even if indirectly - Norwegian UK's Long Haul routes. But Norwegian is gone and IAG ended up acquiring Air Europa. Initially, when originally acquiring UX, it was stated that the brand would go but I see an opportunity to keep it going further. I would ditch the LEVEL Brand which never caught up and merge their LH operations to IB/UX. then, I would merge all short haul operations (including UX's) into Vueling (apart form feeders - feeders would potentially remain with IB and/or UX depending demand, connecting flight etc..).
IB and UX could then co-exist on Long Haul by splitting the routes as per their profile and type of service to be offered. In some routes, they could both operate offering different levels of services.
Take the GRU route for example - IB's timetable there is much more attractive and they depart their more modern T3 whereas the flight from UX to MAD from there is too early in the day and comes from the older T2. You could do something like this offering a cheaper alternative product through UX (using different timing, terminal, airport) as a continuation of the service whilst still controlling the airline rather than having a cheaper competitor on the route.
 
YUAND
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 9:16 am

I'd imagine that since Level was created primarily to fight off Norwegian, it might simply be wound up in its current form. Subsequently, Air Europa may be used as other users have suggested to operate certain IB flights to secondary South America destinations and BCN long haul (currently Level not IB I am aware) at lower cost. The VY brand has a terrible reputation so retiring it in favour of Air Europa may not be a bad idea. The future of Iberia Express must also be considered here. This operation could simply be transferred over to UX as well.
 
tobsw
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 9:35 am

You need to look at brands that compete with each other. Not brands that are in different markets.

The two brands where a potential conflict is, it's between Air Europa and Iberia. Air Europa essentially mirrors Iberia's network (except for Honduras, Salvador de Bahía, Fortaleza, Asunción & Córdoba, which are Air Europa exclusive destinations - or at least, pre-pandemic).

The key is whether IB and UX operations will merge, being UX as a light brand (IB is the premium brand, there's no doubt about it) or whether they chose a mix&match operations with IB branding but "operated by Air Europa". In all cases, operations and network will be coordinated.

There are benefits and disadvantages for each case.
-If they decide to go separate. Both brands are kept - but there will be yield issues. These are solved if, for instance, Grupo Iberia decides that UX will be there to operate less premium, more leisure focused destinations.
-Air Europa branding is fully absorbed by IB. Essentially, all Air Europa assets are transferred to IB. The brand and company will disappear.
-Mix&Match solution: Air Europa, as a carrier will exist, but not the branding, i.e. "Iberia operated by Air Europa". This allows one branding but multicarrier operations. The advantage is that Grupo Iberia will have some extra tools when negotiation their union-labour agreements, "Iberia pilots/cabin-crew, if you don't agree with this new proposal, remember we have a second AOC which is happy to take over these operations". Similar to how BA had their World Wide, Europe and Mixed Fleet crews, but instead of cabin crew, a whole crew+plane package. This could provide a good tool to Iberia, but it will start a war with unions.

I think on the short term, Iberia will keep the status quo, for at least a year (well, that was also the plan in the original agreement).

LEVEl, on the other hand is a completely different and distinctive brand and it's established in the markets they operate. Remember LEVEL is a very niche airline - essentially focused on to/from BCN long haul. Also, LEVEL connects with Vueling short-haul network at BCN. This combo works perfectly. There's no point to add Air Europa to this equation - it's not a recognised neither established brand there.

People in forums tend to dislike the LEVEL and Vueling brands, but in the markets they operate, they are way more valuable than Air Europa, and indeed Iberia. Iberia is not a recognised brand in Barcelona, since they abandoned completely that airport in 2007 (or around that). IB tried to come back with flights to MIA and GRU but failed (MIA flights were absorbed by AA). In 2017 they re-emerged with a completely new branding, LEVEL.
 
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vhtje
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 9:58 am

Rossiya747 wrote:
What if they merged Vueling and Level? With Norwegian not coming back to the transatlantic market and even worse, higher fares from the NYC area (where I'm at), I'd love another low-cost airline here. Plus, a Vueling A330 would look pretty cool.


With regards to LEVEL, there is nothing to merge. LEVEL is a virtual airline. Long haul ops branded LEVEL are (were) operated by either IB or LV (OpenSkies, the former BA-liveried Paris-NYC airline). LEVEL Europe (the former Anisec operation) ceased operations in June.

LEVEL was a low-risk strategy for IAG to start, and given that IAG have not moved it towards obtaining an AOC for LEVEL, suggests that IAG don't want it to survive for ever. My guess is that once the Air Europa deal closes, the LEVEL brand is retired.
I only turn left when boarding aircraft. Well, mostly. All right, sometimes. OH OKAY - rarely.
 
a350lover
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 10:02 am

vhtje wrote:

LEVEL was a low-risk strategy for IAG to start, and given that IAG have not moved it towards obtaining an AOC for LEVEL, suggests that IAG don't want it to survive for ever. My guess is that once the Air Europa deal closes, the LEVEL brand is retired.


Originally created to tackle the disembark of Norwegian in BCN. Do you think the fact that Norwegian won't fly long haul EU-USA anymore can also mean LEVEL hasn't any interest for IAG anymore? UX could also take over in BCN, but still they would need a better feeder there which hasn't worked very well between VY/LV so far, so don't know if UX can get the feed from VY anyway...
 
tobsw
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 10:24 am

a350lover wrote:
vhtje wrote:

LEVEL was a low-risk strategy for IAG to start, and given that IAG have not moved it towards obtaining an AOC for LEVEL, suggests that IAG don't want it to survive for ever. My guess is that once the Air Europa deal closes, the LEVEL brand is retired.


Originally created to tackle the disembark of Norwegian in BCN. Do you think the fact that Norwegian won't fly long haul EU-USA anymore can also mean LEVEL hasn't any interest for IAG anymore? UX could also take over in BCN, but still they would need a better feeder there which hasn't worked very well between VY/LV so far, so don't know if UX can get the feed from VY anyway...


Yes, IAG somehow created LEVEL as a reaction to Norwegian arriving in BCN. IAG KNEW there was enough demand to/from BCN to operate profitably to/from there. Otherwise, they wouldn't have invested in it.

But at the end of the day, Norwegian and LEVEL barely competed.

LEVEL only competed in 2 out of 5 destinations: JFK and SFO. In terms of production, it was less than 20% - since SFO saw max 2-3 weekly flights and JFK also around 3 weekly flights. So, in total only 6 weekly LEVEL flights were competing with Norwegian.

Boston (up to 5 weekly flights), Buenos Aires (daily flights) and Santiago de Chile (3-4 weekly flights), LEVEL had ZERO competition.
 
tobsw
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 10:26 am

vhtje wrote:
Rossiya747 wrote:
What if they merged Vueling and Level? With Norwegian not coming back to the transatlantic market and even worse, higher fares from the NYC area (where I'm at), I'd love another low-cost airline here. Plus, a Vueling A330 would look pretty cool.


With regards to LEVEL, there is nothing to merge. LEVEL is a virtual airline. Long haul ops branded LEVEL are (were) operated by either IB or LV (OpenSkies, the former BA-liveried Paris-NYC airline). LEVEL Europe (the former Anisec operation) ceased operations in June.

LEVEL was a low-risk strategy for IAG to start, and given that IAG have not moved it towards obtaining an AOC for LEVEL, suggests that IAG don't want it to survive for ever. My guess is that once the Air Europa deal closes, the LEVEL brand is retired.


What's the benefit of having a new AOC if IB successfully managed to negotiate an agreement with pilots & cabin-crew to operate LEVEL flights?
 
guillermohs
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 10:30 am

tobsw wrote:
LEVEl, on the other hand is a completely different and distinctive brand and it's established in the markets they operate. Remember LEVEL is a very niche airline - essentially focused on to/from BCN long haul. Also, LEVEL connects with Vueling short-haul network at BCN. This combo works perfectly. There's no point to add Air Europa to this equation - it's not a recognised neither established brand there.

People in forums tend to dislike the LEVEL and Vueling brands, but in the markets they operate, they are way more valuable than Air Europa, and indeed Iberia. Iberia is not a recognised brand in Barcelona, since they abandoned completely that airport in 2007 (or around that). IB tried to come back with flights to MIA and GRU but failed (MIA flights were absorbed by AA). In 2017 they re-emerged with a completely new branding, LEVEL.


I agree with your statement. I guess from a non-Spanish point of view VY brand has little recognition. However, in Barcelona it works just fine, and one can argue that even in the Spanish domestic market (non-BCN operations) VY plays a significant role. Those are the reasons why I don't really see Vueling disappearing in favor of Air Europa.

I consider Air Europa's brand recognition in South America as a valuable active which could be wisely used by IAG. It could be the way of entering new rutes or serving less profitable markets, as well as secondary cities, a niche which UX was already focusing on. Given the duplicity of operations, for short-haul it would be more efficient to consolidate all into the Iberia and Iberia Express brands as feeders for long-haul operations. This would strenghten the current second-class position of IB in Europe.

As for the great future plans for expansion in Africa, Middle East and Asia, I remain skeptical. The only reason behind IB acquiring UX was the elimination of competition in the South America market. The fact that IB has repeatedly failed in the African and Asian markets (JNB being the only non-North African route and was suspended pre-COVID 19) has nothing to do with UX's competition in Madrid Barajas hub. It's more about a very bland service, a poor brand awareness outside Europe and America and the constant dependency on LHR's hub.
 
tobsw
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 10:48 am

guillermohs wrote:
I agree with your statement. I guess from a non-Spanish point of view VY brand has little recognition. However, in Barcelona it works just fine, and one can argue that even in the Spanish domestic market (non-BCN operations) VY plays a significant role. Those are the reasons why I don't really see Vueling disappearing in favor of Air Europa.

I consider Air Europa's brand recognition in South America as a valuable active which could be wisely used by IAG. It could be the way of entering new rutes or serving less profitable markets, as well as secondary cities, a niche which UX was already focusing on. Given the duplicity of operations, for short-haul it would be more efficient to consolidate all into the Iberia and Iberia Express brands as feeders for long-haul operations. This would strenghten the current second-class position of IB in Europe.

As for the great future plans for expansion in Africa, Middle East and Asia, I remain skeptical. The only reason behind IB acquiring UX was the elimination of competition in the South America market. The fact that IB has repeatedly failed in the African and Asian markets (JNB being the only non-North African route and was suspended pre-COVID 19) has nothing to do with UX's competition in Madrid Barajas hub. It's more about a very bland service, a poor brand awareness outside Europe and America and the constant dependency on LHR's hub.


You only need brand recognition in the markets you operate. In the markets where Vueling is strong, there's brand recognition.

Yes, Air Europa has achieved brand recognition in South America. But Iberia too. And Iberia, as a brand, is way more valuable (IB is the most valuable airline brand in Spain).

The key is to know how Iberia (and indeed IAG) will accommodate Air Europa within the group. They suggest they expect Air Europa to achieve ROIC levels IAG has achieved historically (around 15%). Is that possible IF they focus on the second tier markets? Air Europa's 2019 results suggested a 5% operating margin/profit, which is clearly not enough to achieve a 15% ROIC. Does that mean they will keep Air Europa as a carrier/brand? Or do they write it as a "blink blink" to regulators - "see, we don't plan to get rid off the airline"?

In essence, there remain many unknowns. Only time will tell.

Forget about IB expansion in Africa and Asia. They tried with Africa twice in the past decade. Now they fully retreated from the market. Also, TAP is very strong in that segment (essentially, IB missed the train on how to make those operation a success). In terms of Asia... I have high doubts. The true link between Asia and Southamerica is AF+KLM. IAG is not strong in Asia (yes they operate a handful of destinations, but compared to LH/AF/KLM, it's pretty insignificant). Also, MAD's geographical position is great for South America, but horrific for Asia - in contrast to Helsinki.

Fully agree on your last statement. The idea behind UXs acquisition was to remove their main competitor.
 
jonas12345
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 11:13 am

yuomi wrote:
Galwayman wrote:
The strength of IAG is the variety of brands but 2 of the brands are duds - LEVEL and Vueling are easily dumped , A Vueling A330 would be the most depressing travel experiences in the world .

IAG needs a more Eastern European base/career, possibly WAW to cover Asia . BA's Asia network is substandard . Without a proper Asia network IAG will just become a feeder for Qatar going East ...


Pre-pandemic, Vueling account(ed) for 21% of ALL IAG passenger traffic. With >125 frames and many on order, they're no hole-in-the-wall outfit that's easily disposed of. Yes, they are a deeply uncomfortable travel experience w/ 0 service, but they're very competitively priced and do exactly what the people flying with them want. Also, their network (through gritted teeth) is remarkably well thought through.



Vueling don't have 125 frames on order...if you're referring to the LoI on the MAX, that hasn't been signed and will surely look very different now.

Vueling do well, but they seem to struggle outside of Spain - they could do with a brand refresh.
 
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vhtje
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 11:29 am

tobsw wrote:
What's the benefit of having a new AOC if IB successfully managed to negotiate an agreement with pilots & cabin-crew to operate LEVEL flights?


Don't ask me. Ask IAG. That certainly was their intention back in 2017:

Willie Walsh wrote:
Speaking to the Cranky Flier blog about the project, Walsh said LEVEL would use Iberia as an operational platform before transitioning to its own certificate in the short- to medium-term.


https://www.ch-aviation.com/portal/news/54687-level-to-operate-as-a-virtual-carrier-first-eyes-own-aoc

The fact that they changed their minds and didn't ever take that step is, I think, significant.
I only turn left when boarding aircraft. Well, mostly. All right, sometimes. OH OKAY - rarely.
 
JJR
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 12:40 pm

Tricky situation for IAG.

VY brand awareness outside Spain may be bad, but in its main market, BCN, they are seen as the home airline, like what LH is to FRA or IB to MAD. On the other side, Air Europa in BCN is kind of unknown with flights just to MAD, so having them operate Long Hauls instead of LEVEL or rebranding VY as Air Europa can be troublesome for the BCN-based market. Albeit I would love to see it specially if they can build some kind of long haul hub. In South America, UX has built a big network so their brand awareness there should be better than LEVEL's which would make it more convenient to keep that brand.

As of MAD, merging IB and UX fleets would be too complicated with too many different types. But having them go as separate brands would force them to compete with each other unless UX is repositioned to target a different market such as holidaymakers to places like PUJ or CUN. Short-haul wise having Iberia, Iberia Express and Air Europa seems like a mess.
 
tobsw
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 12:52 pm

vhtje wrote:
tobsw wrote:
What's the benefit of having a new AOC if IB successfully managed to negotiate an agreement with pilots & cabin-crew to operate LEVEL flights?


Don't ask me. Ask IAG. That certainly was their intention back in 2017:

Willie Walsh wrote:
Speaking to the Cranky Flier blog about the project, Walsh said LEVEL would use Iberia as an operational platform before transitioning to its own certificate in the short- to medium-term.


https://www.ch-aviation.com/portal/news/54687-level-to-operate-as-a-virtual-carrier-first-eyes-own-aoc

The fact that they changed their minds and didn't ever take that step is, I think, significant.


Probably many things and strategies behind LEVEL have changed a lot since they started the "virtual" airline.

As with everything in the industry, it's very dynamic.

Just looking at the "fleet outlook" IAG published since conception, it has changed year after year. Imagine, in 2019 they never expected to retire all 747 and 340-600 in 2020.

My educated guess is that IB/IAG thinks there's no advantage having an own AOC for LEVEL unless fleet grows significantly.
 
Diverskii
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 1:26 pm

Being 'dynamic' is the crux of the matter. IAG management are obsessed with this, and have done a fairly good job (imo) of uniting two behemoth ex-state owned airlines in to a group which is now positioned to act a bit more 'dynamically' than they otherwise would have been.

It's no secret that the Level office in London was moved back to BCN last year, to integrate more closely with VY. Very easy to do when it's a virtual airline with a small head office.

IAG has ended up with lots of brands and now has choice and flexibility. Don't forget the new 'Aer Lingus UK' outfit out of Manchester... that is operating on a new AOC with staff permanently moved across - there's no reason to suggest that has to stay as an EI brand in the future.... It could make sense to consolidate the LCC shorthaul under VY (the brand has a bad reputation but is commercially successful on the whole) and the longhaul under UX, supporting IB's smaller and less premium EU-LATAM/North America markets. Luis no doubt has some ideas.

Ultimately the brand side of things is all a little bit academic in the leisure market, since there is cross-selling and codeshare across all IAG carriers. You could in theory end up on a IB*VY, issued on BA 125 paper. Expect to see UX codeshare thrown in to the mix soon too.
 
yuomi
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 1:48 pm

jonas12345 wrote:
yuomi wrote:
Pre-pandemic, Vueling account(ed) for 21% of ALL IAG passenger traffic. With >125 frames and many on order, they're no hole-in-the-wall outfit that's easily disposed of. Yes, they are a deeply uncomfortable travel experience w/ 0 service, but they're very competitively priced and do exactly what the people flying with them want. Also, their network (through gritted teeth) is remarkably well thought through.



Vueling don't have 125 frames on order...if you're referring to the LoI on the MAX, that hasn't been signed and will surely look very different now.


With >125 (existing) frames and many on order. Sorry, I could have been clearer there.

All the VY outstanding orders are NEOs, with (potential) MAXs going elsewhere.

I wonder about recognition outside Spain, but then they'd be getting into competition with the likes of U2, FR or DY which I suspect IAG have deliberately sought to avoid. VY serves its niche profitably (pre-pandemic at least) and undeniably gets butts on seats. What they do next is an interesting question.
 
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downtown273
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 2:59 pm

I agree with the observation that IAG already have too many brands in Spain, with Air Europa and Air Europa Express to be added.

I wonder if simplification of brands could look like: Mainline (IB+UX+I2+VY) + Regional (YW+UX Express for regional / inter-island routes).

There have got to be synergies to be achieved from consolidation of brands.

Plus the fact that it will allow them to stop competing against each other as they currently do.
 
aviator2000
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Thu Jan 21, 2021 6:25 pm

I don't get why people here are so insistent in saying that Vueling is not succesfu. It was the second airline which carried the most passengers in Spain (the market it is adressed to) in 2019, only after Ryanair. Even Iberia carried less pax than Vueling (byfar). Carrying that much passengers means that people know the brand, so changing it for Air Europa wouldn't be that good of a strategy.
 
himarhernandez
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Fri Jan 22, 2021 9:46 pm

Here are some thoughts (be kind!)

A) BA-London focused
IB- Madrid "full service"
IB2 + UX Including rebranding UX as IB2 Long Haul)
EI Dublin focused
VY Barcelona focused (rebrand as UX? so that they can grow in Europe in the future?)

B) Very radical... IB rebrands as UX? (IB has invested a lot in branding but is still seen as a legacy company)
 
a350lover
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Sat Jan 23, 2021 9:36 am

aviator2000 wrote:
I don't get why people here are so insistent in saying that Vueling is not succesfu. It was the second airline which carried the most passengers in Spain (the market it is adressed to) in 2019, only after Ryanair. Even Iberia carried less pax than Vueling (byfar). Carrying that much passengers means that people know the brand, so changing it for Air Europa wouldn't be that good of a strategy.


100% agree. Being Barcelona a heavily dominated lowcost airport, Vueling actually managed to defend their home-base against very important players like Easyjet, Ryanair or Norwegian. I guess the majority of the a.net community comes from English speaking countries, where Vueling means nothing and has poor brand recognition but Vueling is the biggest Spanish airline (only behind Ryanair in total numbers), and quite well-known in Paris, Rome and some other parts of Italy. For sure better known that Air Europa.
 
VSMUT
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Sat Jan 23, 2021 10:14 am

yuomi wrote:
Galwayman wrote:
The strength of IAG is the variety of brands but 2 of the brands are duds - LEVEL and Vueling are easily dumped , A Vueling A330 would be the most depressing travel experiences in the world .

IAG needs a more Eastern European base/career, possibly WAW to cover Asia . BA's Asia network is substandard . Without a proper Asia network IAG will just become a feeder for Qatar going East ...


Pre-pandemic, Vueling account(ed) for 21% of ALL IAG passenger traffic. With >125 frames and many on order, they're no hole-in-the-wall outfit that's easily disposed of. Yes, they are a deeply uncomfortable travel experience w/ 0 service, but they're very competitively priced and do exactly what the people flying with them want. Also, their network (through gritted teeth) is remarkably well thought through.


This keeps getting repeated on this site. IAG handed them the entire Barcelona market. That's the 9th largest airport in Europe, 10th largest metropolitan area, in the biggest tourist destination of the country that ranks number 2 globally in terms of tourist visits. Any airline handed that position, regardless of how incompetent, would quickly become a massive player. It says nothing about how good or bad Vueling is. A massive number of travellers have no other choice that subjecting themselves to Vueling.
 
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downtown273
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Sat Jan 23, 2021 1:02 pm

I keep read on A.net how much people 'hate' or 'dislike' Vueling; and how they have to 'subject themselves' to Vueling and they provide a travel experience 'with 0 service'.

Yes, their legroom isn't great. I have taken 5 flights with them over the last 3 weeks; they all had wifi and USB charging ports, free check-in hand luggage (due to Covid, but means you can bring liquids), and they're one of the few airlines still offering full refunds (in voucher form) if *you* choose not to travel (more generous than IB and EI, and in line with BA). Their crews are professional-looking and behave professionally too.

Some of the people that hate Vueling would defend FR/U2 to the end of the world, who offer a questionably worse passenger experience (yes ok, except the legroom on some flights). Not to forget that FR/U2 only sell P2P while VY offers connections.
 
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vhtje
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Sat Jan 23, 2021 2:04 pm

With 25% ownership of IAG, how much would/does QR’s input affect IAG’s strategic and long term planning on IAG’s airline brands?
I only turn left when boarding aircraft. Well, mostly. All right, sometimes. OH OKAY - rarely.
 
Luanco
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Sat Jan 23, 2021 2:11 pm

IAG should merge them all together.
 
tayaramecanici
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Sat Jan 23, 2021 8:13 pm

My 2p analysis on IAG.
1. Brexit, Britain has exited EU however the problems between EU and UK is still lingering. Ireland. NI, Gibraltor and Spain are still alive, Germany & France will continue playing the spoil sport..This diff between sovereigns will create cracks forcing separation.
2. The new USA Govt. Next 4yr USA cannot support global economy. South American Countries like Argentina, Mexico, Chile and Brazil will struggle far more than N.America and rest of the world. The attraction of S.America will be reduced, atleast for the next 5yrs for the flying population of EU and SA.
3. As per planespotters data, IAG has 280 aircrafts in ops out of a fleet of 576 aircrafts ( 296 on parking). You can see nearly 300 aircrafts will never fly for IAG, All of these 300aircrafts or more will be operated by new airlines starting in EU. Spain has a history of airlines being started more due to the tourist biz. The cost of ops for a new airline will be far less than an airline group, remember the high level of unemployment within airline industry especially of Pilots and Engineers.

The above points show the massive head-winds against IAG, among the 3 large airline groups the other 2 being Star alliance and Skyteam.
''You are as good as your nearest competitor'' Bob Crandall.
 
Galwayman
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Sun Jan 24, 2021 12:32 am

downtown273 wrote:
I keep read on A.net how much people 'hate' or 'dislike' Vueling; and how they have to 'subject themselves' to Vueling and they provide a travel experience 'with 0 service'.

Yes, their legroom isn't great. I have taken 5 flights with them over the last 3 weeks; they all had wifi and USB charging ports, free check-in hand luggage (due to Covid, but means you can bring liquids), and they're one of the few airlines still offering full refunds (in voucher form) if *you* choose not to travel (more generous than IB and EI, and in line with BA). Their crews are professional-looking and behave professionally too.

Some of the people that hate Vueling would defend FR/U2 to the end of the world, who offer a questionably worse passenger experience (yes ok, except the legroom on some flights). Not to forget that FR/U2 only sell P2P while VY offers connections.


I'm so jealous ...I've had 2 flights with Vueling

The first one was delayed 6 hours at the airport and then cancelled just as we were boarding when they didn't have any crew . The second flight was cancelled without any expanation . FR is an infinitely better airline, more professional , superb operations ,,,, can't believe anyone would mention Vueling in the same sentence as FR
 
Galwayman
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Sun Jan 24, 2021 12:40 am

yuomi wrote:
Galwayman wrote:
The strength of IAG is the variety of brands but 2 of the brands are duds - LEVEL and Vueling are easily dumped , A Vueling A330 would be the most depressing travel experiences in the world .

IAG needs a more Eastern European base/career, possibly WAW to cover Asia . BA's Asia network is substandard . Without a proper Asia network IAG will just become a feeder for Qatar going East ...


Pre-pandemic, Vueling account(ed) for 21% of ALL IAG passenger traffic. With >125 frames and many on order, they're no hole-in-the-wall outfit that's easily disposed of. Yes, they are a deeply uncomfortable travel experience w/ 0 service, but they're very competitively priced and do exactly what the people flying with them want. Also, their network (through gritted teeth) is remarkably well thought through.

I don't really understand the E.Europe point. With ME3 plus LOT having a pretty well developed Asian network, I can't see the value in WAW. Qatar are quite happy w/ IAG carriers feeding them going east, because it's return on their investment.


Of course Qatar are happy - they're laughing all the way to the bank . That doesnt mean IAG are happy ..... Qatar and IAG are not the same thing. IAG needs an Asia strategy to get away from Qatar asap
 
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Embajador3
Posts: 353
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Sun Jan 24, 2021 10:00 am

[quote=
    ANE: MAD even thinner than I2/Regional markets
[/quote]

- Why do you include ANE, when they are not part of the IAG family and they are an airline that handle the thinner & regional routes for IB? Also, even though they have a 'Iberia Regional' brand, this brand has no effect on the group, since you can not buy tickets on Air Nostrum's website to fly on IB's flights.

- You forgot to include UX's lower cost subsidiary: Aeronova S.L.U., which operates flights for UX under the Air Europa Express brand. They took 3 of the ATR72/500s which were operated by SWT (Swiftair) - EC-MSN/MMZ/MZJ - and are again being operated by Aeronova/Air Europa Express.

So, what will happen to Aeronova and I2 after the merge? Will they merge the 2 brands into UX? will they also merge LEVEL brand into UX?
Flying Together
 
tobsw
Posts: 154
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Re: IAG airlines/brands outlook (mainly in Spain)

Sun Jan 24, 2021 10:12 am

Let's turn the tortilla around.

Which brands are 100% there to remain in the medium-long term:

Iberia
Iberia Express
Vueling
LEVEL, unless IAG decides to close it.

Brands that will be maintained in the short term:

All of the above
Air Europa
Air Europa Express

So what happens in +1 year after the acquisition happens.

No one really knows, and based on recent information spilled by IAG CEO, they don't really know either.

Again, as I said previously, the conflicting brands are Air Europa (+ Express) & Iberia (+ Express). The brand re-organisation will be around Iberia, but won't touch Vueling or LEVEL, if you ask me.

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