12 January 2010

Its All Over Bar The Shouting

So the die is cast for JAL. The rather less than public wringing of hands by their CEO has not stopped the inevitable filing which is now expected in days for an organized Bankruptcy for the venerable Japanese carrier.

The likely impact.

Parking of the A300s and likely some of the 747s will happen in my opinion. Whether the MD80/90s survive will be debatable. Frequencies will be paired initially on some key routes. Look for Japan Europe to get a significant ax. Non-Tokyo international Services will also see an ax. Cargo will take yet another hit. Other candidates include the 767-200s.

The pairing of the staff numbers will likely cause a strong reaction among the staff but an acceptance of the issues will emerge pretty quickly. The latest numbers being discussed is approx 16,000 or one third of the current work force. Look for swinging cuts in the HQ areas. The current CEO will likely step down with a formal turnaround artist brought in - possibly a non-Japanese.

The new Alliance will likely follow pretty quickly especially now the cash issue is off the table - Delta and Skyteam look like a shoe in now.

JAL is going to great lengths to brief their corporate customers to keep them happy. Until the uncertainty is resolved any contention will be a cause for booking away from JAL - we could see plating away from the direct 131 code in the near term.


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