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Skymark wins over Japan
Bloomberg News
21 September 2007

TOKYO -- Skymark Airlines, the largest discount carrier in Japan, came back from two years of losses by doing something the country's biggest airlines have failed to do: win new domestic customers.

Skymark is attracting passengers with fares as much as 48 percent cheaper than Japan Airlines and All Nippon Airways. The airline, which made a first-quarter profit, is also cutting costs by converting to a single type of aircraft, mimicking the strategy of Southwest Airlines, the world's largest low-fare carrier, and Ryanair Holdings, the biggest discounter in Europe.

''It's out of the crisis,'' said Mitsushige Akino of Ichiyoshi Investment Management in Tokyo. ''Skymark's stock is going to gain as investors put a premium on its growth prospects.''

The shares may climb to ¥350, or $3, in the next six months from Thursday's closing price of ¥232 because Skymark has higher growth potential than rivals like All Nippon, said Yasuhiro Matsumoto, an analyst at Shinsei Securities in Tokyo.

Skymark stock, already up 24 percent this year, is still worth less than one-seventh of its February 2005 peak of ¥1,770.

Passenger traffic at Skymark is rising as a decline in Japanese wages makes consumers more price-conscious.

''There is a move to buy cheaper goods in Japan,'' said Yoshiki Shinke, senior economist at Dai-Ichi Life Research Institute in Tokyo. ''The rise of the Internet has made it easier to compare prices, and that has helped discount airlines.''

Skymark's basic fare to fly from Tokyo to Sapporo in October is ¥16,000, compared with ¥30,700 at All Nippon and Japan Air, according to the carriers.

Like most discount airlines, Skymark does not offer free snacks or newspapers on most if its flights.

''I fly with them because they're cheap,'' said Hiroki Fukui, an assistant university professor waiting to board a flight at Haneda airport in Tokyo. ''I've flown with them half a dozen times now. I don't mind if there aren't any frills.''

The airline carried 40 percent more customers in the six months ended June 30 than a year earlier, compared with a 0.9 percent slide at All Nippon and a 1.5 percent drop at Japan Air. Skymark forecasts a profit in the full fiscal year, only its third since it began flights in 1998.

Skymark still has room to grow. It flew 1.7 million passengers in the first six months of this year, less than a tenth of Japan Air's 20.5 million or All Nippon's 21.3 million.

Skymark, which flies only within Japan, has moved quickly to cut routes that were not making money. That helped it fill 75 percent of seats on flights in the three months to June, compared with an average of 56 percent a year earlier.

By comparison, Japan Air filled 59.2 percent of its seats last quarter and All Nippon filled 59.9 percent. The two bigger airlines have increased the pace of cutting unprofitable routes since Skymark's changes last year. Still, Japan Air backed off from ending flights between the cities of Matsumoto and Sapporo earlier this year amid local opposition.

''Skymark never treated routes as a public responsibility and so didn't hesitate to cut them,'' said Matsumoto, the Shinsei analyst.

Skymark ended flights to three destinations at the start of last year and began flying between Tokyo and Sapporo, the busiest air route, according to Japan Air.

All Nippon and Japan Air are responding to Skymark by cutting fares. Earlier this month, they announced discounts for early morning and afternoon flights from Tokyo to Sapporo with prices as low as ¥14,900, or 51 percent cheaper than regular fares, and less than Skymark's regular fare.

The budget carrier is undercutting those fares with discounts of as much as 24 percent for bookings eight days in advance, with tickets to Sapporo from Tokyo as low as ¥12,100 yen.

So far, Skymark is winning the price wars, luring passengers from the more established carriers in a market where consumers are known for their loyalty to well-known brands.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Skymark Airlines To Double Fleet Size By FY 2010 - Report
24 December 2007

TOKYO (Dow Jones)-- Skymark Airlines Inc. (9204.TO) President Shinichi Nishikubo tells the Yomiuri Shimbun in an exclusive interview that the budget airline plans to double its number of aircraft to 20 by fiscal 2010 when a new runway will be opened at Haneda Airport in Tokyo.

Skymark plans to expand its network of routes and shift the makeup of its fleet toward smaller jets that are cheaper to operate and offer better seat occupancy rates, Nishikubo said in the interview.

Nishikubo added that Skymark Airlines is trying to shed its image as the newcomer in Japan's air industry.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Don't they fly Boeing 767s? I'd love to see them obtain a fleet of Boeing 787s.
Search on airliners.net found some 737s as well.
 

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Skymark to add 7 planes if wins 20 Haneda slots-source
25 December 2009

TOKYO, Dec 25 (Reuters) - Japan's Skymark Airlines Inc is ready to introduce seven more Boeing 737-800 planes to its fleet if the discount carrier can get 20 more landing slots at Tokyo's Haneda airport, a company source said.

Haneda, which currently handles mainly domestic flights, is scheduled to open a fourth runway next year, allowing airlines to launch new routes.

Hoping to expand further and introduce overseas routes, Japan's biggest budget carrier has been aiming to get 20 of the 130 new slots, or 15 percent.

"Twenty more slots would mean an additional seven planes," said the source, who asked not to be identified.

Seven planes would come on top of its current 12 737-800 single-aisle aircraft. Even if it does not get as many slots as it wants, the company has plans to increase its fleet to 16 by March 2011.

It would probably need 70 more pilots on top of the 120 it already employs if it is granted the extra slots, the source said, adding that the firm has already had 30-40 applicants, mostly from crew leaving Japan Airlines.

Skymark's aggressive expansion plans come as JAL and All Nippon Airways, Japan's top two airlines, struggle with a sharp drop in a passenger numbers as the global economic slowdown makes people less willing to travel.

The downturn has forced JAL to seek a bailout from a state-backed fund established to inject capital into and buy the debt of struggling but viable firms.

In contrast, Skymark lifted its annual net profit forecast by 33 percent in October, citing rising passenger demand and cost cutting.

The carrier, whose cabin crew wear polo shirts and windbreakers, is also seeking government approval to start flying to Asian cities such as Taipei, Seoul, Beijing and Shanghai, the source said.
 

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メルボルン | &#51652
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Japan Airlines Files for Bankruptcy!!!

Japan Files for Bankcruptcy today and is currently under protection from the Japanese Government. In condition that JAL to be downsize it's route network.

*14 International Routes to be scraped
*17 Domestic Routes to be scraped
*Might join hands with Delta & join SkyTeam & leave OW

http://online.wsj.com/article/BT-CO-20100119-701819.html?mod=WSJ_latestheadlines
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Not much is going to happen. Airplanes will still fly, albeit less frequently, but we won't likely see a liquidation or passengers trapped because the whole airline comes to a grinding halt.
 

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Not much is going to happen. Airplanes will still fly, albeit less frequently, but we won't likely see a liquidation or passengers trapped because the whole airline comes to a grinding halt.
I was telling myself something like this before SkyEurope went down.:nuts:
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I was telling myself something like this before SkyEurope went down.:nuts:
I'd be more concerned about low-cost carriers than national flag carriers. From the news released so far it seems it will restructure and get smaller rather than liquidate.
 

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Kulia I Ka Nu'u
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American Airlines and Delta both offer own a huge share of JAL. I personally want to see JAL being own by Delta Airlines because they have the experience of being near bankrupt and levering out.
 

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Bring Constantinople back
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That's interesting to see that lot of "historical" companies disapeared since 1990: after Pan Am, TWA and Swissair this is JAL...who's next ?
 

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That's interesting to see that lot of "historical" companies disapeared since 1990: after Pan Am, TWA and Swissair this is JAL...who's next ?
JAL isn't going to disappear, they're just going to restructure.
 

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EiGhT 5 & tWo
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Japan Airlines Corp will keep its partnership with American Airlines in the Oneworld alliance and end talks with Delta Air Lines and the rival SkyTeam group, the Asahi newspaper reported.

The two U.S. carriers have been courting Japan Airlines for months with offers of financial aid and close cooperation on international routes, looking to gain access to its vast network in Asia and benefit from the expansion at Tokyo's Haneda Airport.

JAL had been leaning towards joining hands with Delta before filing for bankruptcy last month and bringing in new management under the auspices of a state-backed fund, the Enterprise Turnaround Initiative Corp of Japan (ETIC).

JAL's new chief executive officer, Kazuo Inamori, and officials of the ETIC have decided that switching alliances is too risky and could hinder their ability to turn around the airline quickly, the Asahi said on its website.

JAL will make an official announcement this week, the Asahi said. A JAL spokeswoman declined to comment. No one at the ETIC could be reached for a comment.

In addition to the burden of upgrading computer systems and other costs, the risk that JAL and Delta would not be able to receive regulatory approval for anti-trust immunity also played into the decision, the Asahi said.

Anti-trust immunity allows airlines to work closely on pricing, flight scheduling and in other areas to boost revenue and lower costs. This is now a possible under the "open skies" treaty recently agreed to by the United States and Japan.

American and its Oneworld partners have offered $1.4 billion (640 million pounds) in capital and Delta has offered about $1 billion in financial aid in an effort to woo JAL. However, the ETIC is not expected to invite another carrier to invest in JAL at this stage.

(Editing by Maureen Bavdek)
 

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oneworld welcomes Japan Airlines' reaffirmation to the alliance
09 February 2010

> Dutch> Español> Français> Italiano
oneworld® and its member airlines have warmly welcomed today's reaffirmation by Japan Airlines (JAL) of its membership of the alliance - and its intention to deepen working relationships with its partners in the grouping. This ensures the continued participation of Asia-Pacific's leading airline in the world's leading quality airline alliance.

oneworld Governing Board Chairman, American Airlines Chairman and Chief Executive Gerard Arpey, said: "We respect this was an important decision for Japan Airlines and the government of Japan, and we believe they have made the right choice for JAL's many stakeholders, for Japan's national interests and for consumers. American and its oneworld partners look forward to working with JAL to create an even stronger partnership through commercial enhancements and assistance that can generate important new revenue to JAL and support its successful restructuring."

British Airways Chief Executive Willie Walsh added: "During JAL's alliance review, British Airways and its oneworld partners have demonstrated our extraordinary commitment to JAL. Today's decision brings stability and certainty to JAL at a time when it is most needed, providing the greatest long-term value at the lowest risk. We are delighted that we can now progress with our colleagues at JAL in strengthening our ties and co-operation still further and help re-establish JAL firmly as Asia-Pacific's and one of the world's leading airlines."

Cathay Pacific Chief Executive Tony Tyler said: "This is great news for oneworld, Japan Airlines and Cathay Pacific. We are very pleased we can all move ahead in building oneworld as the pre-eminent and highest quality alliance for Asia and the world, for the benefit of our customers and all our other stakeholders."

Qantas Chief Executive Alan Joyce commented: "As a long-standing partner of JAL's, Qantas is pleased that it has decided to remain within oneworld. We believe oneworld is clearly the right strategic alliance option for JAL, providing both commercial stability and growth opportunities at a vital time for the airline. Qantas looks forward to working with the new JAL leadership team, together with our oneworld partners, as it lays the foundations for long-term viability and success."

oneworld Managing Partner John McCulloch, on behalf of all other airlines in the alliance, stated: "Japan Airlines is a highly valued member of oneworld and all its member airlines so we very much welcome today's confirmation of the airline's continued membership of our alliance. We now look forward to working with JAL, under its new management team led by its new Chairman and Chief Executive Kazuo Inamori and President Masaru Onishi, to implement the proposals we have presented to deepen our co-operation, delivering the best alliance potential to the airline, its customers and employees, the government and taxpayers of Japan and the travelling public at large."

Gerard Arpey noted that American and JAL would now focus on building a joint venture that could offer JAL significant revenue growth beyond the stability that oneworld offers today. In the coming days, American would work with JAL's new management team to finalise a joint application for anti-trust immunity (ATI) across the Pacific, to be filed with the US Department of Transportation (DOT).

•For JAL's statement today, see http://press.jal.co.jp/en/
•For American Airlines' press release in response to JAL's decision today, see http://aa.mediaroom.com/
•For details of the proposals made by its oneworld partners to deepen their co-operation with JAL, see http://www.oneworld.com/ow/news/details?objectID=20395
 

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Moon Transit
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Who would have know that the flight attendant uniforms could be the most valuable asset to save the airline from bankruptcy, maybe thats what American and Delta have been trying to get their hands on. Even more appealing since they attach the stewardess to the uniform using a serial number. I think the Air Asia ones may soon be even hotter. :)

Japan Airline uniforms sold to sex industry
by Staff Writers; From: news.com.au; March 04, 2010 8:20AM; 7 comments
http://www.news.com.au/travel/news/japan-airline-uniforms-sold-to-sex-industry/story-e6frfq80-1225836797776

JAPAN Airlines flight attendant uniforms are being sold to the local sex industry after becoming highly sought after by fetishists.

While several shops have created credible imitations, uniforms worn by air stewardesses have become worth their weight in gold for customers keen on role-playing fantasies.

Since announcing bankruptcy in January cabin crew face mass layoffs and an increased temptation to sell their outfits for a profit.

The airline expects a flood of uniforms on to the black market.

Yu Teramoto, the owner of a specialist costumier in the Akihabara district of Tokyo, told The Times in the UK real Japan Airlines (JAL) outfits have been virtually impossible for buyers to lay their hands on.

The airline has gone to great lengths to ensure uniforms stay off the black market, including inserting a serial number into each item of clothing, and keeping meticulous records of the exact whereabouts of garments all around the world.

This airline may also follow All Nippon Airways, who were forced to sew computer chips into its stewardess uniforms after suffering a similar problem.

This is not the first time JAL uniforms have been in the headlines.

The airline was forced to pay $2500 after uniforms worn by staff in the business-class lounge were stolen and then appeared on an internet auction site.

Mr Teramoto said one uniform from that famous haul sold for $18,000.




JAL uniforms worn by air stewardesses have become worth their weight in gold / AP
 
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