Tuesday, June 8, 2010

AirAsia X aims IPO as stand-alone airline

SEPANG: AirAsia X is eyeing a listing in the second half of 2011 as part of AirAsia group's restructuring plan to separate the long-haul carrier from its short-haul carrier counterpart.

The move is part of AirAsia group's corporate and organisational restructuring to provide investors with a clearer and more focused business model,its group chief executive officer Datuk Sri Tony Fernandes said on Tuesday, June 8.

"After more than two years of operation, we have begun to notice some dilution of the AirAsia business model and recognise the need for AirAsia and AirAsia X to remain focused in their respective markets. Today's announcement is to form a clear line of where we are going," he said.

He added AirAsia X as a fantastic product and service and we see this reorganization as symbolic of it coming into its own as it flies into its next growth phase.

"This arrangement gives AirAsia X financial independence and the latitude to develop its own marketing strategy. While it continues to capitalise the strength of the AirAsia brand, website and culture this separation gives more focus and discipline to AirAsia X's model,' he added.

AirAsia X, launched only in November 2007, is now reaching sufficient scale economies to stand on its own instead of relying on services provided by AirAsia. ''

AirAsia X achieved audited revenues of RM720 million in 2009 and is projected to exceed RM1 billion revenue in 2010, in just its third full year of operations.'' It booked a net profit of RM87 million in 2009.'' AirAsia X has carried two million guests to date.

Organisationally, AirAsia X will take over employment of its own wide-body pilots, cabin crew and ground staff as well as its commercial and marketing team.'' This will enable AirAsia X to aggressively pursue its own commercial strategy and better develop capabilities in long-haul services.

The new model will allow both AirAsia Berhad and AirAsia X to pursue a clearer and more focused business strategy, attract relevant investor profiles and still achieve the competitive advantage of having common-branded short-haul and long-haul networks strategically feeding each other. ''

AIRASIA BHD [] will benefit from accessing growth markets in North Asia, Australia, India and Europe that will be fed from AirAsia X's trunk routes.'' On the other hand, AirAsia X will be able to attract guests in these markets with AirAsia's enticingly unrivalled network of destinations across Southeast Asia.

AirAsia X will continue to use the AirAsia brand and airasia.com website as part of its 30-year Brand License Agreement with AirAsia Berhad. ''

Following this announcement, AirAsia X is offering 'Free Seats' to all destinations that AirAsia X flies to. Booking dates are from 9th to 10th June and travelling period will be from 11th October to 14th November 2010. The free seats are available only on airasia.com and mobile.airasia.com.

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