Brussels Airlines

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Brussels Airlines
Brussels Airlines logo.svg
IATA ICAO Callsign
SN[1] BEL BEELINE
Founded 7 November 2006
Commenced operations 25 March 2007
Hubs
Frequent-flyer program Miles & More, LOOP[2]
Airport lounge
Alliance Star Alliance
Fleet size 49
Destinations 90
Company slogan We go the extra smile.
Parent company SN Airholding N.V./S.A. (55%)[4]
Headquarters Diegem, Machelen, Belgium
Key people
Website brusselsairlines.com

Brussels Airlines (stylized as brussels airlines) is the flag carrier and largest airline of Belgium based and headquartered at Brussels Airport. It operates to over 90 destinations in Europe, North America and Africa and also offers additional charter services, maintenance and crew training.[5] The airline is a member of the Star Alliance as well as the International Air Transport Association and the Association of European Airlines. The airline's IATA code SN is inherited from its predecessors, Virgin Express, Sabena and SN Brussels Airlines.

History[edit]

Foundation[edit]

A former Brussels Airlines Avro RJ85 in SN Brussels Airlines livery

Brussels Airlines was created following the merger of SN Brussels Airlines (SNBA) and Virgin Express. On 12 April 2005, SN Airholding, the company behind SNBA, signed an agreement with Richard Branson, giving it control over Virgin Express. On 31 March 2006 SNBA and Virgin Express announced their merger into a single company. On 7 November 2006, the new name, Brussels Airlines, was announced at a press conference at Brussels Airport. Brussels Airlines began operations on 25 March 2007.

On 15 September 2008, it was announced that Lufthansa would acquire a 45% stake in Brussels Airlines with an option to acquire the remaining 55% from 2011. As a part of this deal, Brussels Airlines would join Star Alliance.[6][7] From 26 October 2008, the ICAO code was changed from DAT to BEL.

On 15 June 2009, Brussels Airlines announced that the European Commission had granted approval for Lufthansa to take a minority share in Brussels Airlines. As a result of this clearance by the EU, the road was cleared for Brussels Airlines to finally join Star Alliance.[8]

Since 25 October 2009, Brussels Airlines has been a member of Lufthansa's frequent flyer programme Miles & More. On 9 December 2009, Brussels Airlines became the 26th Star Alliance member during a ceremony at Brussels Town Hall.

On 15 December 2009, Brussels Airlines officially approved an extra A330. On the same day, Brussels Airlines announced it was working on a new regional airline in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The name of the airline is "Korongo". The main base of the airline is at Lubumbashi in Congo. The airline was launched in April 2012. Brussels Airlines has cancelled the former airDC project, due to disagreements with Hewa Bora.

Development since 2010[edit]

Brussels Airlines Airbus A330-300 in interim livery

On 5 July 2010, the fifth Airbus A330-300 entered into service. Brussels Airlines increased its frequency to Abidjan (up to 6 weekly) and added Accra, Cotonou, Ouagadougou, and Lomé as new destinations. On 11 August 2010, Brussels Airlines and tour operator Club Med announced a new cooperation. As from April 2011, Brussels Airlines will transport 80% of all Club Med passengers out of Brussels, both on existing regular Brussels Airlines routes as on new charter routes operated by Brussels Airlines. Brussels Airlines also announced that it will lease 2 Airbus A320 aircraft from January 2011.[9]

On 26 August 2010, the company announced its new maintenance project. The contract with Sabena Technics for the A330 and Boeing 737 ended on 1 January 2011 and Brussels Airlines will then do the maintenance on the planes. To be able to do this, the move from Building 117 to Hangar 41 was necessary. Also, 73 people from Sabena Technics joined the Brussels Airlines maintenance staff.

Brussels Airlines is adding more American destinations to its network. On 1 June 2012[10] Brussels Airlines inaugurated the route to New York JFK, operating daily with an Airbus A330-300 fitted with the new interior. This is the first Belgian airline in 10 years to fly to New York, after the collapse of Sabena and Delsey Airlines. Since 18 June 2013 they also fly 5 times a week to Washington Dulles.[11] From April 2016 Toronto Pearson will be added to the North-American network.[12]

On 30 January 2014, Brussels Airlines launched its most important expansion in its history, with nine confirmed seasonal destination and a return to the Polish market after some years of absence. It also confirmed the permanent exit of its Avro RJ100 fleet by 2016.[13]

On 22 March 2016, members of the terrorist organization ISIL exploded two bombs in Brussels Airport, closing the airport until Sunday, 27 March 2016. Brussels Airlines shifted some long haul flights to Zurich and Frankfurt and began Airbus A319/Avro RJ100 shuttle service between Liege/Antwerp and Zurich/Frankfurt, as well as provided contracted bus service from Brussels to Antwerp and Liege from where it flew to European destinations.[14]

Corporate affairs[edit]

Ownership and structure[edit]

Brussels Airlines is the operating name of Brussels Airlines SA/NV (previously Delta Air Transport SA/NV)[15] which has its registered office in Elsene-Ixelles, Brussels.[16]

Brussels Airlines is almost 100% owned by SN Airholding SA/NV (1,811,308 shares out of 1,811,309), a Belgian holding company of over 30 shareholders, including the Virgin Group, Fortis, ING, Suez, Tractebel, Brussels Airport, la Société Régionale d’Investissements Wallone (SRIW) and Société Régionale d’Investissements Bruxelloise (SRIB). In turn, SN Airholding SA/NV is 45% owned by Lufthansa AG.[17]

Bernard Gustin has been the sole CEO (previously joint with Michel Meyfroidt) since June 2012. The Executive Committee consists of Gustin, Lars Redeligx (CCO) and Jan De Raeymaeker (CFO).

Business trends[edit]

Brussels Airlines aircraft lined up at Brussels Airport

Limited information appears to be published (and as it is only minority-owned by Lufthansa, the German group also does not reveal any financial data for Brussels Airlines). However, accounts for all Belgian companies must be filed with the National Bank of Belgium. Information available since 2007 (the first year of operations as Brussels Airlines) appears to be as follows (for years ending 31 December):

2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015
Revenue (€m) 925 1,011 849 930 1,036 1,113 1,138 1,224 1,330
Net profits/losses (€m) 25.6 −6.8 −40 5 −80 −61 −22 −4.2 41.3
Number of employees (average) 3,000 2,418 2,479 2,393 2,395 2,427
Number of passengers (scheduled) (m) 5.85 5.46 4.67 4.89 5.69 5.76 5.88 6.60 7.50
Passenger load factor (%) 66.5 68.7 69.2 72.0 74.4
Number of aircraft 47
Notes/sources [18] [19] [20] [19][20] [19][21] [21][22] [23][24]
[25]
b.house, Brussels Airlines head office on the grounds of Brussels Airport

Head office[edit]

The company is headquartered in the b.house (Building 26) in the General Aviation Zone on the grounds of Brussels Airport and in Diegem, Machelen.[26][27][28] The airline asked the Belgian design agency MAXIMALdesign to design the interior of the facility.[29]

Destinations[edit]

Codeshare agreements[edit]

Brussels Airlines Airbus A320-200 in The Adventures of Tintin livery

Brussels Airlines has codeshare agreements with the following airlines (as of July 2016):[30]

Fleet[edit]

Brussels Airlines Avro RJ100
Brussels Airlines Airbus A319-100
Brussels Airlines Airbus A330-300

As of September 2016, the Brussels Airlines fleet consists of the following registered aircraft:[31]

Brussels Airlines Fleet

Aircraft In Service Orders Passengers Notes
J Y Total
Airbus A319-100 21 1[32] 141 141 One in Star Alliance livery.
Airbus A320-200 9 2[32] 180

180

180

180

One each in RedDevils, Tintin comics and Magritte livery.[33]
All aircraft to be reconfigured to 180 seats.[34]
Airbus A330-200 3 1 22 254 276
Airbus A330-300 6 30 258 288
Avro RJ100 9 97 97 To be phased out by the end of 2017[35]
Boeing 737-300 1 126 126
Total 49 4

Fleet development[edit]

Brussels Airlines previously operated 6 BAe 146-200s which were withdrawn in 2008.

During 2009, the airline tested the fuel burn reduction of the AeroTech Services B737 Wing Modification on one Boeing 737-400. After realizing favorable results, the airline modified three more 737s in May and June 2010.

During 2010, two Airbus A319-100s joined Brussels Airlines' fleet. The first Airbus A320-200 joined the fleet in February 2011 and made its first commercial flight on 23 April 2011.

With improving financial performance, rising cash reserves and a desire to reduce costs more rapidly, Brussels Airlines accelerated their fleet replacement plan by ordering 12 aircraft in August 2011. Six A319s, four A320s and two A330-200s were added to the fleet. This has completed the exit of Boeing aircraft from the fleet and accelerated the replacement of the Avro RJ85.

Livery[edit]

The aircraft livery consists of a 'dotted B' logo on the blue tail, a white belly covering the whole aircraft's length, with the name 'Brussels Airlines' written in dark blue on the upper fuselage, preceded by the airline's 'b' logo. Most planes have an altered 'b' logo after superstitious travellers complained about the thirteen dots bringing bad luck.[36] The logo now contains fourteen dots. Besides the familiar blue, red and white livery, Brussels Airlines launched a series of special liveries in their Airbus A320 fleet, all representing things that are typically Belgian: Rackham (a Tintin themed aircraft), Magritte (an ode to the famous surrealist artist) and Trident (the aircraft for the Belgian national football team the Belgian Red Devils).

Service[edit]

Tariff structure[edit]

On European flights, the airline offers four types of tickets – Check&Go, Light&Relax, Flex&Fast and Bizz&Class (business class):

  • Check&Go is a low cost formula, without checked-in luggage and with a buy on board programme offering snacks and drinks for purchase.
  • Light&Relax is a regular economy class with a buy on board programme offering snacks and drinks for purchase.
  • Flex&Fast is an economy plus class, offering full service, such as complimentary newspapers, catering, fast lane at security, change flexibility and priority boarding.
  • Bizz&Class is a full-service Business class on the European network. It offers premium meals, free champagne and full flexibility.

On medium-haul and long-haul flights (Africa, United States and Tel Aviv), Brussels Airlines offers normal economy and business classes.

Inflight entertainment[edit]

Brussels Airlines has two inflight magazines. For the European network there is b-there! which is a monthly magazine. On the African network, the magazine is named B Spirit Magazine[37] and is published every two months. Both magazines are available on board or as a PDF download through their respective websites. The magazines are also available as a freely downloadable application for Apple's iPad.[38]

From November 2011 until the end of 2012 Brussels Airlines has introduced a new interior on the A330 fleet. The new economy seats feature AVOD personal in-flight entertainment 9 inch screens. Also business class got new lie-flat seats with an improved AVOD IFE system with 15 inch screens, coming from The IMS-Company and known as "RAVE".

Frequent flyer program[edit]

Brussels Airlines is an integrated partner of Lufthansa's frequent flyer programme called Miles & More. Miles can be earned on all the flights operated by airlines which adhere to the programme, in addition to the Star Alliance member airlines.[39] Miles can also be earned thanks to Brussels Airlines' non-airline partners.[40]

Brussels Airlines customers have been able to earn Miles & More benefits since 25 October 2009,[41] when Brussels Airlines' previous frequent flyer programme, Privilege, ended and became Miles & More. There was a conversion of Privilege Gold members into Miles & More Frequent Travellers, while Privilege Platinum card holders became Miles & More Senators. Privilege miles were converted on a 1 to 1 basis.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "IATA - Airline and Airport Code Search". iata.org. Retrieved 13 April 2015. 
  2. ^ whttps://www.brusselsairlines.com/en-be/loop/about-loop.aspx
  3. ^ a b c "Lounges". Brussels Airlines. Retrieved 2016-04-01. 
  4. ^ "History". brusselsairlines.com. 
  5. ^ Flight International 27 March 2007
  6. ^ Official press release by Lufthansa
  7. ^ "Corporate website". brusselsairlines.com. 
  8. ^ [1] Archived 26 June 2009 at the Wayback Machine.
  9. ^ (Dutch) De Tijd: Club Med in zee met Brussels Airlines. Tijd.be (2010-10-28). Retrieved on 2010-11-06.
  10. ^ "Brussels Airport Website: Brussels Airlines: inaugural flight to New York". Brusselsairport.be. 2012-06-01. Retrieved 2014-05-14. 
  11. ^ "Flight tickets to Washington. Book your flight with Brussels Airlines". Brusselsairlines.com. Retrieved 2014-05-14. 
  12. ^ "Brussels Airlines invests in intercontinental growth". Brusselsairlines.com. Retrieved 2016-02-14. 
  13. ^ "Meer vliegtuigen en bestemmingen Brussels Airlines". deredactie.be. 
  14. ^ "AlertMessageDetail - Brussels Airlines". brusselsairlines.com. 
  15. ^ "General Conditions of Carriage". Brussels Airlines. Archived from the original on 2008-05-07. Retrieved 2008-06-17.  "“ WE ”, “ OUR ” “ OURSELVES ” and “ US ” means Delta Air Transport SA/NV, trading as Brussels Airlines and having its registered office at 11, Rue des Colonies -Koloniënstraat, 1000 Brussels, Belgium."
  16. ^ "Home." Brussels Airlines. Retrieved on 4 February 2012. "Brussels Airlines – zone General Aviation – b.house – Airport Building 26 – Ringbaan – 1831 Diegem – Belgium Registered office: Brussels Airlines SA/NV – 100–102, Avenue des Saisons, box 30, 1050 Brussels, Belgium"
  17. ^ "Shareholders". Brussels Airlines. Retrieved 2016-06-16. 
  18. ^ "2007 financial results". Brussels Airlines. 10 April 2008. Retrieved 17 June 2016. 
  19. ^ a b c "Brussels Airlines reduces its losses, but yields fall as Ryanair and Vueling enter its Brussels hub". CAPA - Centre for Aviation analysis of Brussels Airlines annual reports filed at www.nbb.be. 10 August 2014. Retrieved 17 June 2016. 
  20. ^ a b "Passenger increase for Brussels Airlines in 2012". Brussels Airlines. 10 January 2013. Retrieved 17 June 2016. 
  21. ^ a b "Brussels Airlines welcomed 757,749 more passengers in 2014" (Press release). Brussels Airlines. 9 January 2015.  Archived 12 February 2016 at the Wayback Machine.
  22. ^ "Brussels Airlines reports significant financial improvements in 2014, expects to break-even in 2015". CAPA - Centre for Aviation. 13 March 2015. Retrieved 20 June 2016. 
  23. ^ "All-time record for Brussels Airlines in 2015" (Press release). Brussels Airlines. 12 January 2016.  Archived 12 February 2016 at the Wayback Machine.
  24. ^ "Fleet | Brussels Airlines". www.brusselsairlines.com. Retrieved 2016-01-25. 
  25. ^ "Brussels Airlines achieves record profit and creates additional jobs". Brussels Airlines. 17 March 2016. Retrieved 17 June 2016. 
  26. ^ "Corp – Contact Us." Brussels Airlines. Retrieved on 23 October 2009.
  27. ^ "Africa is our passion." Brussels Airlines. Retrieved on 6 July 2011. "Brussels Airlines – zone General Aviation – b.house – Airport Building 26 – Ringbaan – 1831 Diegem – Belgium"
  28. ^ "bedrijf.jpg." Machelen. Retrieved on 25 April 2010.
  29. ^ "Brussels Airlines • Rebranding and interior design of b.house." Maximal Design. Retrieved on 6 July 2011.
  30. ^ http://ink-live.com/emagazines/binspired/2500/july-2016-long-haul/files/assets/basic-html/index.html#119.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  31. ^ "Belgian Aircraft Register". Belgian Government - Official information and services. Retrieved 21 September 2016. 
  32. ^ a b "20160311 - Brussels Airlines kicks off the summer season with 9 new destinations". 
  33. ^ "Belgian Icons". brusselsairlines.com. Retrieved 2016-04-04. 
  34. ^ "Brussels Airlines verhoogt capaciteit A320's naar 180 passagiers - Flightlevel". Flightlevel (in Dutch). Retrieved 2016-04-10. 
  35. ^ ch-aviation.com - Brussels Airlines to retire ARJ fleet by late-2017 3 December 2015
  36. ^ "BBC NEWS - Europe - 'Unlucky' airline logo grounded". bbc.co.uk. 
  37. ^ "B Spirit Magazine website". bspiritmagazine.com. 
  38. ^ "iPad In-Flight Magazines". ipadinflightmagazines.blogspot.com. 
  39. ^ [2] Archived 15 May 2009 at the Wayback Machine.
  40. ^ [3] Archived 4 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine.
  41. ^ "Brussels Airlines is the newest Miles & More airline partner". Miles and More. 1 April 2009. Retrieved 2009-04-29. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Brussels Airlines at Wikimedia Commons