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Old September 7th, 2010, 10:42 PM   #341
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Air India is successfull at BHX, Emirates is very successfull at BHX and has just opened a dedicated lounge for passengers, PIA is successfull at BHX and so is Continental with its daily service to New york (Newark).

So why do the "regions" have foreign airlines at our airports, we would much prefer to have BA. BHX in the 90s even built a dedicated terminal for them which is now for FLYBE and RYANAIR
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Old September 8th, 2010, 08:59 PM   #342
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Concorde was one reason to like BA - alas no more..

http://www.londonandnyc.com/2010/09/...-concorde.html
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Old September 9th, 2010, 09:00 PM   #343
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BHX is served internationally by LH, AF etc because it is a spoke for their hubs. Whereas the "regions" of their countries are don`t see international flights by their flag carrier as well. AF concentrates on CDG, KL on AMS, etc. Only Lufthansa has two hubs in its home country (FRA and MUC) and focus cities (DUS, HAM, STR, TXL) which also see some international flights.
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Old October 2nd, 2010, 08:02 AM   #344
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Some pics of British flag carrier











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Old October 5th, 2010, 05:26 PM   #345
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BA September traffic up 1.3 pct on premium growth

British Airways carried 1.3 percent more passengers in September compared with the year before, helped by a strong increase in lucrative first and business-class travel.

BA on Tuesday said it carried 3.05 million passengers last month, up on the 2.92 million it flew in September 2009, while its load factor -- a measure of how well it fills its planes -- rose 0.9 percentage points to 82.4 percent.

It said first and business-class travel -- the most profitable part of its passenger business -- rose 4.3 percent, while non-premium traffic was up 0.7 percent.

Aviation fell into a steep nosedive after the financial market collapse in 2008 but airlines are growing more confident as economic recovery takes hold, with performance at pre-crisis levels and expectations of profitability rising.

"Market conditions remain as previously anticipated, with strong yield performance in both premium and non-premium cabins," BA said in a statement.

Shares in BA, which have risen 7 percent in the last month, were 3.3 percent up at 247.1 pence by 1330 GMT, valuing the business at around 2.76 billion pounds ($4.4 billion).

BA, which enjoyed a strike-free September, could face more industrial action over the coming months, after union members recently voted in favour of another ballot over a fresh wave of strikes.

The airline, which will on Wednesday launch its long-awaited alliance on transatlantic routes with Spain's Iberia and American Airlines, said cargo rose by 1.4 percent last month.
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSLDE6941K820101005
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Old October 17th, 2010, 02:09 AM   #346
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Downturn? Demand for our new £4,500 first class seats is flying high, says BA


Lavish: a view of the new first class cabin that BA has introduced on 11 aircraft

It is the ultimate upgrade. Passengers are paying more than £4,500 for a seat in British Airways' new first class cabin.

The airline gambled in February by spending £100 million on its flagship brand at a time when demand for first and business class seating was weak.

But BA says it has been delighted with the number of travellers prepared to pay nearly 10 times the price of a seat in economy.

A spokesman said: “Customer satisfaction ratings have gone through the roof. People cannot wait for the new cabin to be rolled out across our long-haul aircraft.”

So far the new cabin has been introduced on 11 aircraft, including Boeing 777s and 747s, and will eventually be carried on 75 aircraft. The cabin holds 14 passengers and includes bigger seats, electronic blinds and a 15-inch in-flight entertainment screen.

The BA spokesman said: “We have contemporised first class and created an intimate private jet experience onboard. We have resisted gadgets and gimmicks and focused instead on simplicity and quality.

“Every feature has been carefully considered and researched to ensure we are giving our customers what they want. People are prepared to pay top dollar for the right sort of luxury and comfort. We feel we have tapped into a successful market.”

You even get a pair of pyjamas

From the moment you enter British Airways' new first class cabin you realise you are about to experience something unique.

Traditional porthole windows have been replaced with an electronic glass screen operated by a switch. When open, it allows a view out of two portholes. When closed, it changes colour.

The new seat is easy to turn into a bed, the angle of recline controlled by a dial, not buttons. At 6ft 3in, I stretched out comfortably with plenty of elbow room. There's enough space at your feet for a bag. Add a glass lamp and a large foldaway tray table that tucks away in a side shelf and it's like being in a luxurious hotel. There is even a personal closet so you can hang up your jacket.

A champagne cocktail is served on taking your seat and you have your own attendant. The meal is served whenever you want — dinner choices might include braised lamb osso bucco and risotto Milanese with broccoli and butternut squash, washed down with Marmesa 2007 pinot noir from San Luis Obispo in California.

Pyjamas and a turn-down service are provided, and crew ask if you will want waking for a full English breakfast. Or you can sleep to within 40 minutes of landing and wake to coffee and croissants.

It was the best rest I have had on a plane, with a level of comfort and service second to none. The only problem is the price ...
Lavish: a view of the new first class cabin that BA has introduced on 11 aircraft
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Old October 17th, 2010, 12:07 PM   #347
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I flew with BA a few years ago and was far from impressed with the service provided. I have flown on many cheaper airlines that outshine BA on service & politeness hands down.

Last edited by fozzy; October 18th, 2010 at 06:02 PM.
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Old October 19th, 2010, 11:31 PM   #348
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British Airways expands at London City Airport with new planes and extra route to Stockholm


A British Airways aircraft taxis past other parked BA aircraft

BRITISH Airways will bring two new aircraft into London City Airport as the company expands its operation from the east London site.

The operator will take up an option for two new Embraer E-190 jets to be delivered in spring 2011.

The new arrivals will take BA’s fleet up to 13 at the Royal Docks airport and the firm says it will continue to grow its presence at London City.

Peter Simpson, BA CityFlyer managing director, said: “We are delighted to announce the conversion of these two options, which will increase our fleet size by almost 20 per cent at London City Airport.

“Customer feedback to the new fleet has been fantastic, particularly with the additional space and two-by-two seating. The successful fleet introduction and customer reaction to the E-Jets has given us the confidence to expand so soon after the initial order.”

The two additional aircraft will enable British Airways to expand its route network from the Docklands airport with a new service to Stockholm Arlanda from January 9 2011. They are currently in discussions with various airports for opportunities with the second aircraft.

Luke Hayhoe, BA CityFlyer commercial manager, said: “We were always hopeful of taking up options for the larger Embraer 190s and are delighted to confirm this. This does of course present opportunities for us to further expand our London City schedule. The success of our recently launched Copenhagen service and customer requests made the decision on Stockholm an exciting choice. We will announce further new services in the coming months.”
http://www.docklands24.co.uk/docklan...kholm_1_685080
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Old October 24th, 2010, 05:35 PM   #349
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BA adds to daily Dubai service


The return of business and first-class passengers in the Middle East is helping the airline to raise its yields.

British Airways (BA) is pouring capacity back into its Dubai service that was cut during the global financial crisis, citing a return in premium demand. From the end of this month, the UK flag carrier will add a Boeing 767 to the route, to make it three flights a day from its base at London Heathrow Airport.

The extra capacity, which will be added for its winter schedule, comes after first and business-class passenger demand "pile-drived" downwards in March last year to premium cabin occupancy levels of just 30 per cent, said Andrew Crawley, the director of sales and marketing at BA. That forced the airline to halve its daily services into Dubai International Airport from four to two as part of a global capacity reduction campaign that included temporarily parking four of its 747 jumbo jets last year.

BA also competed aggressively on price, Mr Crawley said, with BA following global trends as its average fare prices fell by between 20 per cent and 30 per cent. "Last year, in a market like that, you had to compete to be relevant." The third flight will be extended into the summer if demand continues. Airline traffic has grown every month this year in a gradual climb back from the depths of last year. In August, traffic for Middle East airlines increased 12.3 per cent compared with the same period last year and there was a 13 per cent increase in capacity after many airlines added new planes.

"All of the Middle East is growing right now," Mr Crawley said. "Because of the low base of 2009, it means that everyone will be growing." BA's Middle East "seat factors", or average occupancy level, was 78 per cent, a figure the company described as encouraging. Airlines often require their aircraft to be two thirds full to break even. BA's announcement of growing traffic last month helped its share price reach a two-year high this week, to 264 pence. The airline's year-to-date passenger traffic is still down more than 7 per cent on the same period last year due to cabin crew strikes and the ash cloud that grounded flights across Europe in April.

In the Middle East, the return of business and first-class passengers is helping the company to raise its yields, or average price per ticket. "We're seeing yields up between 15 to 30 per cent, although this isn't about price increases, it is about the mix changes: business travel is coming back," Mr Crawley said. BA is the oldest airline to serve the Middle East. Its precursor, Imperial Airways, began with flying-boat services into the Dubai Creek in 1937.

Now, BA has services into all six member nations of the GCC, representing the second most important market in its Asia Pacific and Africa region after India. The market is significant for BA because of the heavy traffic flows from the Middle East into the UK and the transit traffic to BA's 22 destinations into the US. Last year, BA reinstated its Saudi Arabia services into Jeddah and Riyadh after exiting the market in 2005.



The withdrawal left competitors BMI and Saudi Arabian Airlines to split the spoils of the UK-Saudi market but after a year back in service, BA's flights are 65 per cent full into the kingdom and the carrier plans to add a sixth flight each week there at the end of the month. The increase in services to Dubai will see BA ratchet up the stakes with Emirates Airline, the largest international airline by capacity, which operates five daily flights into London Heathrow. One of BA's strategies to compete globally has been mergers, acquisitions and code-share agreements under a new holding company, the International Airlines Group.

"We've got big competitors in the Middle East market, which are challenging," Mr Crawley said. "We'll meet that challenge head on."
http://www.thenational.ae/business/a...-dubai-service
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Old October 25th, 2010, 12:37 AM   #350
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BA to join Virgin on Puerto Rico route

British Airways is to join Virgin Atlantic in providing direct flights from Gatwick to Puerto Rico.

The carrier is to start twice weekly year-round flights to the Caribbean island’s capital of San Juan from March 28, 2011. Virgin currently operates a winter-only connection from London.

BA’s lead in fares start at £668.90 return including taxes, fees and charges in economy, £1,080.40 return in premium economy and £2,200.40 return in Club World.

The new service boosts the number of BA flights to the Caribbean to 64 a week across 15 destinations.

The airline recently announced additional increases to the Caribbean from March 2011. Flights to Barbados will increase from 10 to 12 a week, Antigua from five to six a week and St Lucia - Port of Spain going daily from five a week.

BA chief executive Willie Walsh announced the San Juan route during a visit to the Caribbean for the Caribbean Tourism Organisation leadership strategy conference attended by political and business leaders.

“We are committed to developing our presence in the Caribbean wherever possible, building on our relationship with the region which stretches back many decades,” he said.

“Our new joint business with American Airlines and Iberia, which we announced last week, also opens up a host of new opportunities and connections to the British Virgin Islands, Dominica, Martinique, Guadaloupe, St Maarten and the US Virgin Islands of St Croix and St Thomas.”

Puerto Rico governor Luis Fortuño said: "Air access is key to the economic development of Puerto Rico. This increased access from London and its connecting markets is crucial for our tourism and commercial development."
http://www.travelweekly.co.uk/Articl...ico-route.html
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Old November 7th, 2010, 02:42 AM   #351
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British Airways Traffic Climbs at Fastest Pace in 2 1/2 Years on Economy

British Airways Plc accelerated at the fastest pace in more than 2 1/2 years last month as business bookings surged and demand for short-haul flights rebounded to outstrip gains in the long-haul market.

Passenger travel rose 3.9 percent in October, British Airways said today, the most since February 2008, led by an 8.4 percent jump in the UK and Europe. All regions showed growth in traffic, or passengers carried multiplied by distance flown.

Europe’s third-biggest airline posted a first profit in two years on Oct. 29, when it reported net income of 229 million pounds ($369 million) for the second quarter ended Sept. 30 from revenue that jumped 18 percent to 2.51 billion pounds.

Premium sales rose 4.6 percent in October, with coach-class travel up 3.7 percent. Overall capacity increased 5.2 percent, outstripping the traffic gain and reducing the load factor, a measure of seat occupancy, 1 percentage point to 79.8 percent.

British Airways was trading little changed at 272.4 pence as of 2:44 p.m. in London. The stock is up 46 percent this year.
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-1...n-economy.html
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Old November 7th, 2010, 01:54 PM   #352
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Does anybody know when British Airways (BA) is starting direct flights to Colombo (CMB) in Sri Lanka ? Thank you.
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Old November 8th, 2010, 07:13 AM   #353
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when will Islamabad resume??
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Old November 28th, 2010, 05:16 PM   #354
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Source:http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stori...095994/1/.html

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BA, Iberia face last hurdle over landmark merger
Posted: 28 November 2010 1546 hrs

LONDON : Shareholders in British Airways and Iberia vote Monday on whether to approve a multi-billion-euro merger creating Europe's second biggest airline as the sector recovers after a severe economic downturn.

Investors in London and Madrid are widely expected to back the tie-up, that will value the pair at a combined 6.6 billion euros, after the share prices of BA and Iberia have spiked by about 40 and 70 percent respectively this year.

The boards of the British and Spanish airlines agreed a deal in April, while EU competition regulators have also given the green light for a full alliance.

"The BA/Iberia merger allows the two carriers to 'catch up' to rival groupings such as Air France KLM and Lufthansa," said independent aviation analyst John Strickland.

"It provides a wider overall network, with Iberia bringing its Latin American presence to the table and BA its strength across the North Atlantic and to the Middle East and Asia," he told AFP.

A tie-up, on schedule to be completed in January, would create Europe's second-biggest airline by market capitalisation after Germany's Lufthansa, and fly 60 million passengers a year.

BA and Iberia sought to merge as the global economic downturn and the rise of low-cost airlines resulted in steep losses for traditional carriers.

However since the tie-up announcement, the pair have overcome travel chaos due to strikes and the volcanic ash cloud to post healthy returns to profit, indicating that the sector is on a path to recovery after the deep recession.

The landmark Anglo-Spanish deal would create annual savings of around 400 million euros by the fifth year of the merger, which would see the creation of a new holding company with a primary shares listing in London.

BA would hold 55 percent of the new capital and Iberia 45 percent.

"There will be opportunities for increased efficiencies over time -- such as in fleet purchasing and operating plans and in joint marketing and sales," added Strickland.

"Nevertheless the management will have to work hard to integrate the two companies given their different geographic locations and different national cultures."

As part of new holding company International Consolidated Airlines Group, BA and Iberia would each retain their current operations and individual brands.

Current BA chief executive Willie Walsh would become chief executive of the new group and Iberia chairman Antonio Vazquez would be chairman.

The merger cleared a significant hurdle when Iberia said it had decided not to exercise its right to cancel the deal over a BA employees' pensions deficit of 3.7 billion pounds (4.4 billion euros, 5.8 billion dollars).

Awaiting finalisation of the merger, BA recently launched a transatlantic alliance with Iberia and American Airlines, pledging cheaper fares and more travel choice.

BA rebounded to a net profit of 107 millions pounds for the six months to September, its first interim profit for two years, while the first-half earnings compared with a net loss of 217 million pounds a year earlier.

Iberia posted profit after tax of 53 million euros for the nine months to September, recovering from a loss of 182 million euros a year earlier.

The healthy results were the latest evidence of a strengthening recovery in the airline industry which was savaged by the worldwide economic slump that hammered demand for air travel.

- AFP /ls
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Old November 28th, 2010, 06:50 PM   #355
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Originally Posted by PortoNuts View Post
Lavish: a view of the new first class cabin that BA has introduced on 11 aircraft

Downturn? Demand for our new £4,500 first class seats is flying high, says BA
Meh .. Qantas Business Class offered pyjamas as well.
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Old November 29th, 2010, 02:10 PM   #356
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Source:http://www.businesstimes.com.sg/sub/...15236,00.html?

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BA-Iberia merger awaits shareholder nod

(LONDON) Shareholders of British Airways (BA) and Iberia will vote today on whether to approve a multibillion-euro merger creating Europe's second biggest airline as the sector recovers after a severe economic downturn.

Investors in London and Madrid are widely expected to back the tie-up that will value the pair at a combined 6.6 billion euros (S$11.6 billion), after the share prices of BA and Iberia spiked by about 40 and 70 per cent respectively this year.

The boards of the British and Spanish airlines agreed on a deal in April - while EU competition regulators have also given the green light for a full alliance.

'The BA-Iberia merger allows the two carriers to 'catch up' to rival groupings such as Air France KLM and Lufthansa,' said independent aviation analyst John Strickland.

'It provides a wider overall network, with Iberia bringing its Latin American presence to the table and BA its strength across the North Atlantic and to the Middle East and Asia,' he said.

A tie-up, scheduled to be completed in January 2011, would create Europe's second-biggest airline by market capitalisation after Germany's Lufthansa, and fly 60 million passengers a year.

BA and Iberia sought to merge as the global economic downturn and the rise of low-cost airlines resulted in steep losses for traditional carriers.

Since the tie-up announcement, the pair have overcome travel chaos due to strikes and the volcanic ash cloud to post healthy returns to profit, indicating that the sector is on its path to recovery after the deep recession.

The landmark Anglo-Spanish deal would create annual savings of around 400 million euros by the fifth year of the merger, which would see the creation of a new holding company with a primary shares listing in London.

BA would hold 55 per cent of the new capital and Iberia 45 per cent.

'There will be opportunities for increased efficiencies over time - such as in fleet purchasing and operating plans and in joint marketing and sales,' added Mr Strickland.

'Nevertheless, the management will have to work hard to integrate the two companies given their different geographic locations and different national cultures.'

As part of new holding company International Consolidated Airlines Group, BA and Iberia would each retain their current operations and individual brands.

Current BA chief executive Willie Walsh would become chief executive of the new group and Iberia chairman Antonio Vazquez would be chairman.

The merger cleared a significant hurdle when Iberia said that it had decided not to exercise its right to cancel the deal over a BA employees' pensions deficit of 4.4 billion euros.

Awaiting finalisation of the merger, BA recently launched a transatlantic alliance with Iberia and American Airlines, pledging cheaper fares and more travel choice.

BA rebounded to a net profit of £107 million (S$220 million) for the six months ended September - its first interim profit in two years - compared with a net loss of £217 million a year earlier.

Iberia posted after-tax profit of 53 million euros for the nine months ended September, rebounding from a loss of 182 million euros a year earlier.

The healthy results were the latest evidence of a strengthening recovery in the airline industry which was savaged by the worldwide economic slump that hammered air travel demand. -- AFP
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Old November 29th, 2010, 06:19 PM   #357
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British Airways and Iberia shareholders approve deal to create Europe's 3rd largest carrier
29 November 2010

LONDON (AP) - Shareholders in British Airways PLC and Iberia SA have approved a 5.7 billion pound ($8.9 billion) merger that will create Europe's third-largest airline.

The investors' rubber stamp for the deal, however, was partly overshadowed Monday by an announcement from the union representing BA's cabin crew that workers will vote on whether to take further strike action at the British flag carrier.

More than 99 percent of shareholders from both airlines voted in favor of the deal -- a result that was announced at investor meetings in London and Madrid on Monday.

The two airlines announced the merger earlier this year as a way to survive in an industry facing falling demand from both business and leisure travelers in the wake of the global credit squeeze.

BA Chairman Martin Broughton told investors at the meeting in Westminster, central London, that the deal had a "compelling, strategic and financial logic" and would benefit staff, passengers and shareholders.

Only around 30 BA shareholders attended the meeting because of a strike on the London Underground rail network and a cold snap that has brought early snow across the country, but proxy votes left the result in no doubt.

BA Chief Executive Willie Walsh said the merger -- BA shareholders will hold 56 percent of the company, Iberia's the remainder -- would ensure BA could compete effectively with low-cost carriers.

The airlines expect annual synergies worth some euro400 million ($529 million) starting the fifth year following the merger.

In Madrid, Iberia Chairman Antonio Vazquez said it was a "historical agreement that will create a global group to lead a future consolidation process in the airline business."

But the Unite union attempted to throw a spanner in the works by announcing after the shareholder meetings that it would be balloting thousands of cabin crew about whether to take further industrial action in a fractious and long-running dispute with the carrier's management about changes to pay and working conditions.

Unite joint leader Tony Woodley accused BA's management of "victimizing" union members at the airline and said the union had been left with no choice after negotiations stalled.

Cabin crew walked out for 23 days in May and June -- causing the cancellation of hundreds of flights and costing BA millions in lost revenue and compensation.

The merged Iberia and BA group will rank behind Germany's Lufthansa AG and Air-France KLM in revenue terms.

The new holding company will be called International Airlines Group, a moniker that Walsh has said is deliberately vague to allow it to snap up other carriers when the time is right.

BA last year abandoned merger talks with Australia's Qantas Airways, but Walsh said in September that he had a target list of around 12 carriers.

The pair also plan to expand their oneworld alliance with American Airlines, a proposal that has angered rival carriers, including Richard Branson's Virgin Airways. Strict U.S. antitrust laws currently bar a full-scale merger with the U.S. airline, but the trio still plan to set prices together and share seat capacity on trans-Atlantic flights.

International Airlines Group will be registered in Madrid, where its board of directors and shareholders meetings will be held. Its financial and operational headquarters will headquartered in London and run by Walsh. Trading in the holding company's shares is expected to begin on the London Stock Exchange in late January.

Each airline will retain its existing brand for commercial purposes.

The combined group will have a fleet of 406 aircraft, carrying around 57 million passengers a year. Annual revenue is estimated at around 12 billion pounds.

Between them, the two carriers fly to more than 250 destinations. A key benefit for BA is Iberia's greater access to South American routes, while Iberia in return will gain from BA's more extensive North American operations.

The merger approval comes at the end of a difficult year for BA, which was hit by the Icelandic ash cloud as well as the cabin crew strikes.

But the deal has overcome another potential hindrance -- BA's large pension deficit. Iberia, which had the right to walk away from the merger if it was unhappy with BA's plan to deal with a pension fund deficit of 3.7 billion pounds, said in September it was happy with BA's plan to tackle the funding gap.

BA shares are down 0.1 percent at 271.6 pence in London, while Iberia stock was 0.2 percent lower at euro3.20 in Madrid. Both markets were trading broadly negatively.

------

Associated Press writer Ciaran Giles contributed to this report from Madrid.
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Old November 29th, 2010, 07:26 PM   #358
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TIMELINE-BA, Iberia shareholders back merger

Nov 29 (Reuters) - British Airways and Spain's Iberia shareholders have approved a merger of the two carriers that will create the world's third-largest airline by revenue.

Following is timeline of events leading to the merger of the two airlines:

July 18, 1997 - Iberia confirms preliminary deal on a co-operation pact with BA.

Oct. 27, 1998 - BA agrees to take a stake in Iberia alongside American Airlines parent AMR Corp. Spanish state holding company SEPI, which owned Iberia at the time, said the deal was for BA to buy a stake of 8.2 to 9.1 percent.

Dec. 10, 2003 - BA and Iberia win European Commission approval to operate a proposed alliance in the European Union.

Sept. 8, 2004 - BA raises about 425 million pounds ($704.4 million) by selling its stake in Australia's Qantas Airways, sparking speculation that it might increase its 9 percent stake in Iberia.

Nov. 15, 2006 - BA buys American Airlines' stake in Iberia for 19 million euros ($28.5 million), raising its stake in the Spanish carrier to about 10 percent.

March 30, 2007 - BA appoints UBS to advise it after news that private equity firm Texas Pacific Group (TPG) had made a 3.4 billion-euro bid approach for Iberia.

April 23 - BA rules out making an independent bid for Iberia, instead siding with a consortium led by TPG.

Nov. 26 - The consortium led by TPG says it withdraws bid.

July 3, 2008 - BA confirms reports it is in talks with Iberia and American Airlines about a transatlantic tie-up.

Aug. 14 - BA, American Airlines and Iberia announce they have agreed to a transatlantic tie-up intending to cooperate on flights among the United States, Mexico and Canada and the EU, Norway and Switzerland.

July 9, 2009 - Fernando Conte steps down as chairman of Iberia and is replaced by dealmaker Antonio Vazquez, an appointment seen as boosting the chances for a merger.

Nov. 12 - BA and Iberia announce a preliminary agreement in a deal targeted to close by the end of 2010.

-- BA shareholders would have 56 percent of the combined firm -- with 419 aircraft flying to 205 destinations -- while Iberia shareholders would get 44 percent.

Dec. 14 - BA reveals a 3.7 billion pound pension deficit. The pension deficit is one of the stumbling blocks in talks.

March. 16, 2010 - BA reaches agreement with unions on the future of its pensions plan.

April 8 - BA and Spain's Iberia sign the $8 billion merger to create the world's third-largest airline.

June 22 - BA says it has agreed on a recovery plan for its 3.7 billion pound pension deficit.

Sept. 22 - Iberia says it accepts BA's agreement with the trustees of its pension.

Sept. 27 - Iberia says it has appointed chairman Vazquez as the new chairman of International Airlines Group (IAG) the new company formed from the merger of Iberia and BA. BA's Willie Walsh will be CEO of AIG, Iberia says.

Sept. 29, 2010 - BA, American Airlines and Iberia sign off on a strategic alliance that will see them cooperate on flights between Europe and North America.

Oct. 27, 2010 - Iberia calls a shareholders' meeting for Nov. 29 to vote on the planned merger.

Oct. 29, 2010 - BA swings to a pretax profit of 158 million pounds for the six months to Sept. 30 from a loss of 292 million in the same period in 2009. Iberia also return to a nine-month profit from steep losses a year ago.

Nov. 29, 2010 - BA and Iberia shareholders approve the merger.
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Old November 30th, 2010, 09:47 AM   #359
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FACTBOX-How combined BA, Iberia will look

Nov 29 (Reuters) - British Airways and Spain's Iberia shareholders have approved a merger of the two carriers that will create the world's third-largest airline by revenue, International Airlines Group.

Following are some key facts about the new company:

TERMS

- Deal will create new holding company that will own both existing airlines with dual hubs in London and Madrid.

- Once finalised, BA shareholders will have 56 percent of the new company and Iberia 44 percent.

THE MERGED AIRLINE:

- CEO: British Airways' Willie Walsh; Chairman: Iberia's Antonio Vazquez

- Combined market value of around $8 billion

- Headquarters to be in London

- Operations: The two will still fly under existing brands, run from dual hubs in Madrid and London

- Aircraft: 419 aircraft.

- Destinations: 205 airports

- Passengers per year: 61.5 million

- Flights per day: 1,700

- Staff: 60,282

- Turnover: about 15 billion euros ($19.72 billion)

FINANCIAL FORECASTS

- BA: 158 million pound pretax profit in the six months to September; seen posting average full year pretax loss of 513 million pounds ($799.4 million), according to Reuters poll of 17 analysts

- Iberia: 64 million euro pretax profit in the nine months to September; seen posting an average full-year pretax profit of 32 million euros, according to a Reuters poll of 19 analysts

RATIONALE

- Greater financial muscle and more routes to compete with European giants Air France-KLM and Lufthansa

- Cost savings and greater buying power on fuel, aircraft, IT and other products that analysts estimate is worth some 550 million euros a year through to 2015.

- Very few overlapping routes. Iberia has the biggest share of the Europe-Latin America market, while BA is the leading airline on North Atlantic routes and has strong Europe-Asia connections.

- Ends BA's long chase for Iberia. Fulfills Iberia's long-time desire for consolidation. Sources: Reuters News, Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S, British Airways, Iberia, IATA, Airbus, Boeing ($1=.7606 Euro) ($1=.6417 Pound)
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Old November 30th, 2010, 04:34 PM   #360
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BA's Walsh confident about Rolls-Royce, A380

MADRID, Nov 30 (Reuters) - The head of British Airways expressed confidence in British engine maker Rolls-Royce after a recent mid-air engine blowout, and reaffirmed plans to start taking delivery of Rolls-powered A380s in 2013.

Rolls-Royce has been under scrutiny since a mid-flight failure of its Trent 900 engine on Nov. 4 forced Qantas to ground its A380 fleet temporarily. BA has ordered 12 A380s.

"(Rolls-Royce) has a great track record in developing engines and I have absolute confidence in the aircraft, the engine and the combination of the two," BA Chief Executive Willie Walsh said in an interview with Reuters Insider TV.

Speaking after finalisation of a merger with Spain's Iberia , Walsh said he was confident the global recovery in air traffic would continue in 2011 as economies beyond Europe and the United States continue to move forward.

"For the two major economies, clearly the issue of Europe is sovereign debt and the issue of the United States is the strength or fragility of the economic recovery," he said.

BA and Iberia returned to profits earlier this year thanks to a recovery in premium travel, but analysts fear weakening consumer confidence in Europe could trigger another slowdown in passenger numbers.

Airlines must have the power to adapt their business to unpredictable environments and continued low-cost competition, Walsh said, underscoring the need for further consolidation in the air sector.

BA and Iberia want to use their new company, International Airlines Group, as a platform to drive consolidation of the global air sector.

The $9 billion tie-up, which got shareholder approval on Monday, will create the world's third largest airline by revenue.

However, threats of further strike action cast a shadow over the merger after BA's cabin crew union announced on Monday a ballot for more strikes in a long-running dispute that has cost the airline some 150 million pounds ($233.2 million).

"I'm very confident we'll be able to build on our contingency plans and if we face any further industrial action we will be able to operate most, if not all, of our flights," Walsh said.

By 1354 GMT, BA's shares fell 2.14 percent to 255.6 pence while Iberia's shares were down 1.6 percent at 3.08 euros.

($1=.6431 Pound)
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