|Founded||1987 (as Aegean Aviation)|
|Commenced operations||28 May 1999|
|Airport lounge||Aegean Club Lounge|
|Fleet size||44 (excl. subsidiaries), 58 (incl. subsidiaries)|
|Headquarters||Kifisia, Attica, Greece|
|Key people||Theodoros Vassilakis (Chairman)|
|Revenue||€911.8 million (2014)|
|Operating income||€104.6 million (2014)|
|Net income||€94.2 million (2014)|
Aegean Airlines S.A. (Greek: Αεροπορία Αιγαίου Α.Ε., pronounced [aeropoˈria eˈʝeu]; LSE: 0OHY) is the largest Greek airline by total number of passengers carried, by number of destinations served and by fleet size. A Star Alliance member since June 2010, it operates scheduled and charter services from Athens and Thessaloniki to other major Greek destinations as well as to a number of European destinations. Its main hubs are Athens International Airport in Athens, Thessaloniki International Airport in Thessaloniki and Larnaca International Airport in Cyprus. It also uses other Greek airports as bases, some of which are seasonal. It has its head office in Kifisia, a suburb of Athens.
On 21 October 2012, Aegean Airlines announced that it had struck a deal to acquire Olympic Air, and the buyout was approved by the European Commission a year later, on 9 October 2013. Both carriers continue to operate under separate brands. In addition, Aegean Airlines participated in the final stages of the tender for the privatization of Cyprus Airways, the national carrier of Cyprus. Following the bankruptcy of Cyprus Airways, Aegean Airways established a hub at Larnaca Airport, thus initiating scheduled flights to and from the island to various destinations and filling the service gap created by the services termination of Cyprus Airways.
- 1 History
- 2 Business Evolution
- 3 Frequent-flyer program: Miles+Bonus
- 4 Lounges
- 5 Destinations
- 6 Fleet
- 7 Awards and industry recognition
- 8 References
- 9 External links
Aegean Airlines was founded as Aegean Aviation in 1987. It was originally a VIP/business air operation specialising in executive and air ambulance services. On 17 February 1992, it became the first airline to be issued with a Greek independent air operator's licence. After it was bought by Vasilakis Group in 1994, Aegean Aviation commenced VIP flights from Athens all over the world with wholly owned Learjet aircraft. The Aegean Airlines name was adopted with the start of scheduled passenger services at the end of May 1999.
Aegean's first commercial flights were in May 1999 from Athens to Heraklion, Crete and Thessaloniki with 2 brand-new wholly owned British Aerospace Avro RJ100. In December 1999 Aegean also bought Air Greece. After an agreement in March 2001 to merge Aegean and Cronus Airlines, the company operated for a while as Aegean Cronus Airlines until full integration. Since 2005, the airline has been in partnership with Lufthansa, offering participation in the Miles & More programme, and its flights, in addition to its A3 code also have the Lufthansa LH code. In March 2006, Aegean Airlines also entered into a co-operation agreement with TAP Portugal . In December 2008, Aegean Airlines announced its co-operation with Brussels Airlines.
As of 3 July 2014[update] the airline is owned by Theodoros Vassilakis (34.17% - 23.6% via Evertrans S.A. and 9.46% via Autοhellas S.A.), Alnesco Enterprises Company Limited (9.48%), Siana Enterprises Company Limited (9.48%), Konstantakopoulos Achilleas (6.39%).
On 26 May 2009, the Aegean Airlines' membership application was approved by the Chief Executive Board of Star Alliance. Aegean officially joined the alliance on 30 June 2010.
Attempted merger with Olympic Air and buyout
In February 2010, initial shareholder discussions took place to consider co-operation between Aegean Airlines and Olympic Air fueling rumours of a possible merger. On 22 February 2010, Olympic Air and Aegean Airlines announced that they agreed to a merger. The newly merged airline was to carry the Olympic brand name and logo, after a transition period in which both airline brands will be used in parallel. The Aegean brand would cease to exist after the transition period. It was expected that the merger would be finalised and the new combined airline would begin operation by October 2010.
Aegean joined Star Alliance at the end of June 2010. The intent was for the merged carrier to be a Star Alliance member, despite the fact that Olympic Air was forging ties with SkyTeam pre-merger. Star Alliance welcomed the proposed merger, releasing a statement stating "The integration teams from both sides will soon meet to assess the necessary steps, in order to guarantee a smooth transition of the merged Aegean Airlines and Olympic Air operations into the Star Alliance network".
On 26 January 2011, the European Commission blocked the merger between the two airlines, citing anti-competition concerns. The commission stated that the merger would have created a "quasi-monopoly" in Greece's air transport market, with the combined airline controlling more than 90% of the Greek domestic air transport market. The EC further stated its belief that the merger would lead to higher fares for four of the six million Greek and European passengers flying to and from Athens each year, with no realistic prospects that a new airline of sufficient size would enter the market to restrain the merged airline's pricing. Additionally, commissioner Joaquin Almunia stated that the merger would have led to higher prices and lower quality of service for Greeks and tourists traveling between Athens and the islands. Both carriers offered remedies in an attempt to ease concerns, though the EU believed that they would not be enough to protect travelers adequately and ease competition concerns. One of the remedies offered by the airlines included ceding takeoff and landing slots at Greek airports, though the commission noted that Greek airports do not suffer from the congestion observed at other European airports in previous airline mergers or alliances.
On 21 October 2012 Aegean Airlines announced that it had struck a deal to acquire Olympic Air, pending approval by the European Commission.On 23 April 2013, the European Commission issued a press release announcing it was starting an in-depth investigation into the proposed acquisition of Olympic Air by Aegean Airlines and announcing that the Commission will have reached a decision by 3 September 2013. On 13 August 2013 it was published in the Greek media that the final decision had been delayed until 16 October 2013. The merger was approved by the European Commission on 9 October 2013 citing that "due to the on-going Greek crisis and given Olympic's own very difficult financial situation, Olympic would be forced to leave the market soon in any event".
In 2009, Aeagean Airlines carried 6.6 million passengers surpassing for the first time its rival Olympic Airlines, which carried 5.2 million passengers. In 2010 Aegean Airlines carried 6.1 million passengers, of which 50% were foreigners. In 2011 Aegean Airlines carried 6.5 million passengers of which, 54% was on international routes.
In 2012, amidst the unprecedented economic crisis for Greek tourism and the economy in general, Aegean Airlines accumulated a total of 6.1 million passengers having a sharp increase in passengers from international destinations to regional airports of Greece (Heraklion, Rhodes, Corfu, Chania) as well as Thessaloniki. Athens International Airport suffered a 6% decrease from 2011 but the airline managed to increase the load factor of its scheduled flights from 68.9% to 74.3%. In 2013, the airline reported carrying 6.9 million passengers, an increase of 12% compared to 2012, with an average load factor of 79%
2013 was a pivotal year for Aegean's operations as the airline returned to profit, having gained €66.3 million after taxes, and reported revenues of €682.7 million. The airline continued its healthy growth during 2014, with reported revenues increased to €911.8 million, the highest in its history, having net profits of €80.2 million and an average load factor of 78.3%.
The table below is a summary of the 2004-2014 business trends of Aegean Airlines based on the company's official financial reports.
|Revenue (€ millions)||283.5||340.6||401.1||482.7||611.7||622.7||591.0||668.2||653.4||682.7||911.8|
|Net Profits/Losses after tax (€ millions)||−3.6||15.0||24.6||35.8||29.5||23.0||−23.3||−27.2||−10.5||66.3||80.2|
|Number of employees||1,551||1,629||1,729||1,923||2,142||2,463||1,949||1,615||1,347||1,459||1,678|
|Number of passengers (millions)||4.3||4.5||5.2||6.0||6.6||6.2||6.5||6.1||6.9||10.1|
|Passenger load factor (%)||>70||70||70||65,8||68,1||68,9||74||79||78.3|
|Number of aircraft||21||23||29||33||26||29||28||30||50|
|Notes/sources||||||||||||||||*excl. OA||**incl. OA|
Post-merger business prospects
2014 was the first truly post-merger financial year following full acquisition of Olympic Air. The Aegean Airlines group reported full-year 2014 figures showing consolidated revenues of €911.8 million, increased by 7%, as well as and net earnings of €80.2 million, increased by 53%. During 2014, the group carried a total of 10.1 million passengers flying 50 aircraft, showing a solid increase of 14% compared to the equivalent pro-forma figure of 2013.
For 2015, Aegean Airlines has scheduled flights totaling 15 million seats (including Olympic Air), two million more than in 2014. Aegean Airlines' long-term business plan evolution aims for 15 million actual passengers by 2023.
Frequent-flyer program: Miles+Bonus
Miles&Bonus was Aegean Airline's frequent-flyer program, fully integrated with other similar programs of Star Alliance. Its members earned miles on scheduled flights operated by Aegean Airlines, subsidiary Olympic Air, other Star Alliance members as well as from various partnerships including museums, hotels, car-rentals and Aegean Airlines-branded credit cards. Program members' status were determined by the accumulation of "status miles" based on the booking class and the distance flown. There are three membership levels (tiers); Blue, Silver & Gold.
Since 24 November 2014, all memberships of Olympic Air's frequent-flyer program Travelair Club have been absorbed and integrated resulting to new membership program altogether. The new program has been re-branded as Miles+Bonus. The Miles+Bonus program follows the structure of its predecessor and it is also be composed by the same three membership tiers, albeit having different criteria for status tiers and miles accumulation reflecting closer ties with the other members of Star Alliance.
For 2015, Aegean Airlines plan to serve 134 destinations in 42 countries, including charter flights. 34 of these destinations will be domestic operating and covering the whole of Greece, especially during the summer season. Moreover, besides Athens International Airport and Thessaloniki International Airport, Aegean Airlines announced to fly to many destinations in Europe and Asia from its new hub at Larnaca International Airport in Cyprus. Starting 1 April 2015, Munich will be served from the Larnaca hub, followed by Zürich, Beirut, Milan, Mykonos and Santorini.
As of 28 June 2015[update] Aegean Airlines operates scheduled flights to 79 destinations.
Aegean Airlines has codeshare agreements with the following airlines:
During summer season, Aegean Airlines operates a number of A320s, performing charter services in association with major tourist operators. The charter flights connect popular holiday destinations in Greece to Italy, France, United Kingdom, Poland, Israel, Romania, Russia, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Austria, Germany, Hungary, Ukraine and other countries.
In its history, the airline has so far made two strategic moves concerning its fleet. The first was meant to withdraw all turboprop planes from the fleet, which was accomplished in May 2004. Subsequently, Aegean Airlines placed a large order for Airbus A320 and A321 aircraft to drastically renew the fleet with various additions of same type aircraft over the recent years. As result, Aegean Airlines operates an all-Airbus fleet, currently consisting of the following aircraft.
|Airbus A320-200||35||4||168/174||One in Star Alliance livery.
Two in all-white livery, featuring just the airline's logo and trade name.
All new aircraft will be equipped with sharklets.
Remaining deliveries due are: 1 in 2015 and 3 in 2016.
In August 2010, Aegean Airlines became the first airline to commit to upgrading its Airbus A320 family fleet with FANS-B+ datalink system offered by Airbus, which will be obligatory by February 2015 across European Airspace. As of March 2014[update] all passenger cabins across the whole fleet are being retrofitted with brand new reclining Aviointeriors Colombus Two seats, which are thinner and lighter, also allowing the addition of an extra row. Aegean Airlines expects deliveries of six more, all brand new, Airbus A320ceo ("ceo" - current engine option) to its fleet. Airbus and Aegean Airlines have agreed deliveries to start by June 2015 and be completed by early 2016.
Furthermore, it is Aegean Airlines intention to issue, possibly within 2015, a tender to both Airbus and Boeing as part of its business plans to increase the fleet to 70 aircraft but also replacing older A320s currently in use. The expanded new fleet will enable Aegean Airlines to carry 14-15 million passengers annually.
Other than the current aircraft, Aegean Airlines also operated the following types:
Livery and branding
The Aegean Airlines livery is mostly "eurowhite", featuring a thin red line towards the lower part of the fuselage. Above it, the fuselage is white and features the airline's name, written in dark blue using trademarked font series. Below the red line, the fuselage is painted gray. The Aegean Airlines logo, two seagulls flying in front of the sun, is featured on the tail the aircraft. In addition to the standard livery, Aegean Airlines uses a number of non-standard liveries, such as one advertising Star Alliance as well as one celebrating the new Acropolis Museum.
|Aegean Airlines livery|
Awards and industry recognition
Aegean Airlines has received a number of awards as well as an increasing industry recognition even without including and counting awards issued by individual airport authorities. Most prominent are the five Skytrax awards within a period of six years (2009 - 2014) as the Best Regional Airline in Europe.
- 2000/2001 – ERA Bronze Award: Airline of the Year
- 2004/2005 – ERA Gold Award: Airline of the Year
- 2005/2006 – ERA Silver Award: Airline of the Year
- 2006/2007 – ERA Silver Award: Airline of the Year
- 2007 – ERA's Palme d'Or award
- 2008/2009 – ERA Gold Award: Airline of the year
- 2009 – Skytrax Best Regional Airline in Europe
- 2011 – Skytrax Best Regional Airline in Europe
- 2012 – Skytrax Best Regional Airline in Europe
- 2013 – Skytrax Best Regional Airline in Europe
- 2013 – On-time Performance Service Awards: Most Reliable Regional Airline in Europe for 2012
- 2014 – Skytrax Best Regional Airline in Europe
- 2015 – Skytrax Best Regional Airline in Europe
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- "Annual Financial Report for the period (1 st January to 31st December 2014)" (PDF). Retrieved 26 March 2015.
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- "Air Serbia / Aegean Airlines Begins Codeshare Service from late-May 2015". airlineroute.net. 19 May 2015. Retrieved 2 June 2015.
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