Japan Airlines Awarded CAPA Asia Pacific Airline Of The Year
This award is to the airline that has been the biggest standout strategically during the year, has had the greatest impact on the development of the airline industry, has established itself as a leader, and provided a benchmark for others to follow.
JAL was selected for several new strategic initiatives the group has pursued since restrictions that had been imposed as conditions of a 2010 government bailout were lifted in 2017.
JAL has since resumed expansion with several new long-haul routes including Melbourne and Kona. New JVs have been forged this year with China Eastern and Hawaiian Airlines, supplementing existing JVs with American Airlines, British Airways, Iberia and Finnair. JAL also has increased cooperation with Americanand Alaska and has implemented new partnerships with Aeromexico, Garuda Indonesia and VietJet – the latter a pioneering tie-up with Asia’s fastest growing LCC.
JAL established earlier this year a low cost long haul subsidiary, which plans to launch in 2020 with 787s focusing on opportunities in Southeast Asia. JAL already has a stake in Japan’s largest short haul LCC (by fleet size), Jetstar Japan, and the new long haul project will improve its position in the strategically important and fast growing budget end of the market ahead of the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
JAL, which contracted significantly in 2010 and 2011 as it restructured, has resumed expansion with RPK growth of around 5% the last three years. The airline group has been consistently profitable the last seven years, generating operating profits of at least USD1 billion every year since FY2011/2012.
“JAL has had a momentous year, pursuing several new partnerships and strategic initiatives while resuming growth,” CAPA executive chairman Peter Harbison said. “The airline group has been consistently profitable since completing a successful restructuring and re-listing early this decade. JAL is now well positioned for future growth as it implements a well crafted new long-term strategy. The establishment of a long haul low cost subsidiary, a pioneering partnership with VietJet and a new JV with Hawaiian to supplement an expanding JV with American are just three of many examples highlighting JAL’s strategic accomplishments.”