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Aerolíneas Argentinas

Aerolíneas Argentinas
Light blue and gray letters with a stylized light blue condor at the top
IATA ICAO Callsign
AR ARG ARGENTINA
Founded 14 May 1949 (1949-05-14)
Commenced operations 7 December 1950 (1950-12-07)
Hubs Aeroparque Jorge Newbery
Secondary hubs Ministro Pistarini International Airport
Focus cities Ingeniero Ambrosio L.V. Taravella International Airport
Frequent-flyer program Aerolíneas Plus
Airport lounge Salón Cóndor[1]
Alliance SkyTeam
Subsidiaries
Fleet size 54
Destinations 58
Company slogan Alta en el cielo
(English: Up high in the sky)
Parent company Argentine Government (100%)
Headquarters Buenos Aires, Argentina
Key people
Revenue Increase US$2.037 billion (FY 2013) (incl. all subsidiaries)[2]
Net income negative increaseUS$251 million (FY 2013) (incl. all subsidiaries)[2]
Total assets Increase US$1.627 billion (FY 2012) (incl. all subsidiaries)[2]
Employees 11,515
Website .com.aerolineaswww

Aerolíneas Argentinas (English: Argentine Airlines), formally Aerolíneas Argentinas S.A.,[3] is Argentina's largest airline and serves as the country‍‍ '​‍s flag carrier.[4] The airline was created in 1949 from the merger of four companies, and started operations in December 1950 (1950-12). A consortium led by Iberia took control of the airline in 1990, and Grupo Marsans acquired the company and its subsidiaries in 2001, following a period of severe financial difficulties that put the airline on the brink of closure. The company has been run by the Argentine government since late 2008, when the country regained control of the airline after it was taken over from the Spanish owners. As of December 2014, Aerolíneas Argentinas was state-owned. It has its headquarters in Buenos Aires.

Aerolíneas Argentinas and its sister company Ministro Pistarini International Airport. Aerolíneas has a fleet of Boeing 737-700s and -800s for serving domestic and regional routes, whereas intercontinental services are flown with Airbus A330s and -340s. SkyTeam membership was achieved in late August 2012 (2012-08); the airline's cargo division became a member of SkyTeam Cargo in November 2013 (2013-11).

Contents

  • History 1
    • Early years to privatisation 1.1
    • Privatisation: 1990-2008 1.2
    • Renationalisation: 2008-onwards 1.3
  • Corporate affairs 2
    • Ownership and subsidiaries 2.1
    • Key people 2.2
    • Headquarters 2.3
  • Destinations 3
    • Alliances 3.1
    • Codeshare agreements 3.2
  • Fleet 4
    • Recent developments 4.1
    • Current 4.2
    • Retired 4.3
    • Livery 4.4
  • Accidents and incidents 5
  • See also 6
  • Notes 7
  • Citations 8
  • External links 9

History

Early years to privatisation

An Aerolíneas Argentinas DC-4 at Ministro Pistarini International Airport, c. 1958.

The history of the airline can be traced back to 1929, when Compagnie Générale Aéropostale (Aéropostale) started airmail operations between Buenos Aires and Asunción using Laté-25 equipment, later expanding its network to cities located in the Patagonia.[5] Many French pilots flew for the company in its beginnings, with aviator and author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry among them.[6] Argentine personnel occupied vacant posts left by the Frenchmen as they gradually withdrew from the airline, and shortly after Aéropostale's Argentine subsidiary Aeroposta Argentina was formed. In 1947, this airline became a mixed-stock company in which the Government had a 20% stake and private investors held the balance.[5] As Aeroposta expanded its network southwards and incorporated the Douglas DC-3 into its fleet, another three mixed-stock companies were in operation at the time: ALFA (Aviación del Litoral Fluvial Argentino) mainly operated flying boats northwards to the Mesopotamia, FAMA (Flota Aérea Mercante Argentina) operated overseas services with DC-4s as its mainstay equipment, and ZONDA (Zonas Oeste y Norte de Aerolíneas Argentinas) was mainly concerned with operations in the northwest region.[5] These carriers became unprofitable and President Juan Perón had them amalgamated into a single state-owned company on 14 May 1949 (1949-05-14).[5][7][8] The state holding was officially rebranded as Aerolíneas Argentinas-Empresa del Estado, but became commonly known as Aerolíneas Argentinas, or simply Aerolíneas.[9] The four companies comprising the state holding ceased independent operations on 31 December 1949 (1949-12-31).[9]

An Aerolíneas Argentinas de Havilland Comet 4 at Idlewild Airport in 1965.

Aerolíneas Argentinas started operations on its own on 7 December 1950 (1950-12-07).[10] In February 1950 (1950-02), almost ten months prior to the start of operations, five new Convairs were already acquired.[11] As early as 1950 the Douglas DC-6 was added to the fleet, and was used to launch a weekly Buenos Aires–Rio de JaneiroNatalDakarLisbonParisFrankfurt flight in late 1950.[12] Soon afterwards, Douglas DC-4s joined the fleet and services were inaugurated to Santiago de Chile, Lima, Santa Cruz, and São Paulo. By March 1953 (1953-03), the airline's network was 35,000 miles (56,000 km) long, flown with DC-3s, DC-4s, DC-6s, Convair-Liner 240s and Short Sandringhams.[13] The company carried 291,988 passengers in 1954,[14] and 327,808 in 1955.[15] On 8 February 1957 (1957-02-08), it was reported that Aerolíneas Argentinas had ordered ten F-27 Friendships.[16][nb 1] The Comet had begun commercial jet services in the 1950s, and the carrier once again set the pace among the South American airlines, when Aerolíneas' president A. Cdre. Juan José Güiraldes persuaded Argentina's President Arturo Frondizi to buy six of them,[7] becoming the first overseas airline in ordering the type.[19] The first jetliner flown by Aerolíneas, named Las Tres Marías, landed at Ezeiza Airport on 1959-3-2.[20][21][22] Comet flights to New York began in May 1959.[23]:589

Aerolineas Aeroparque Jorge Newbery Buenos Aires in 1972

In the early 1960s the fleet consisted of four Comet 4s, four Convair 240s, 15 DC-3s, six DC-4s, five DC-6s and six Sandringhams, whereas the ten F-27s ordered in 1957 were still pending delivery.[24] The 1960s saw the Avro 748 short-haul turboprop airliner, starting on 15 February 1962 between Buenos Aires and Punta del Este; Aerolíneas was the launch customer for this aircraft.[9][25] The first Caravelle flight for the carrier was Buenos Aires–Santiago de Chile on 1 April 1962.[9] At April 1965 (1965-04) the carrier had 5,960 employees, and the aircraft park consisted of three Comet 4s, one Comet 4C, three Caravelles, 12 DC-3s (three of them freighters), six DC-4s, three DC-6s and 12 HS-748s.[26] In 1966, loans granted by the Ex-Im Bank and Boeing permitted the purchase of a number of Boeing 707-320Bs in a deal worth US$37,000,000 ($268,942,564 in 2016).[27] In November 1969 (1969-11), the carrier entered a pool agreement with Lufthansa covering services between Germany and Argentina.[28]

A Boeing 707-320B at Frankfurt am Main Airport in 1976

By March 1970 (1970-03), Aerolíneas Argentinas had a fleet of six Boeing 707s that served routes to Europe and the United States, three Caravelles 6Rs and four Comet 4s that flew regional services, and 12 HS-748s that flew domestically, whereas six Boeing 737-200s were on order.[29] During the decade, the fleet saw the arrival of three different aircraft types from Boeing: the 727—the first example entered the fleet in December 1979 (1979-12) on lease from Hughes AirWest and three more were ordered directly from Boeing[30][31]—, the 737,[32] and the 747.[33] The incorporation of the Fokker F-28 into the fleet in the mid-1970s prompted the withdrawal of the last HS-748s, making the company to be the first South American airline in operating an all-jet aircraft park.[34] Frankfurt, Madrid and Rome became the first destinations to be served with the brand new 747s, starting January 1977 (1977-01).[35] Another milestone for the company took place in June 1980 (1980-06) with the first south polar scheduled service, linking Buenos Aires with Hong Kong via Auckland.[36] Late that year, a second-hand Boeing 747SP was acquired from Braniff for US$51,000,000 ($145,976,171 in 2016).[37]

An Aerolíneas Argentinas Boeing 747-200B on approach to London Heathrow Airport in 1979.

The airline was assigned by law the monopoly of international operations from Argentina in 1971.[38] This meant no other Argentine airline was able to operate international flights, let alone the already created Austral. The carrier therefore became the flag carrier of the country. The same law also assigned Aerolíneas Argentinas a 50% of the domestic market share.[38] Following the acquisition of Austral by the Argentine government in 1980, both Aerolíneas Argentinas and Austral became government-owned, to the extent that some routes were simultaneously operated, even using similar equipment. However, there existed a state of continuous tension over salary differences between both companies that eventually led the Aerolíneas Argentinas' pilots to a three-week-long strike that started on 1 July 1986.[39] During this strike, the government leased pilots from the Argentine Air Force to operate some aircraft. Other companies took advantage from this situation and gained the market share Aerolíneas Argentinas lost, as domestic routes were operated by Austral, LADE and LAPA, and the government temporarily authorised foreign carriers to exploit the company's international routes.[40]

During the Falklands War in 1982, and for a short period later as well, the company was banned from flying through British airspace. There used to be a flight from London-Gatwick to Argentina's capital; however, because of the ban passengers bound to Argentina had to change planes at Madrid-Barajas.[41]

At March 1985 (1985-03), Aerolíneas Argentinas had 9,822 employees. At this time, the fleet comprised one Boeing 707-320B, one Boeing 707-320C, seven Boeing 727-200s, ten Boeing 737-200s, two Boeing 737-200Cs, five Boeing 747-200Bs, one Boeing 747SP, two Fokker F28-1000s and a Fokker F28-4000. The international network radiated from Buenos Aires and served Asuncion, Auckland, Bogota, Cape Town, Caracas, Frankfurt, Guayaquil, Hong Kong, La Paz, Lima, Los Angeles, Madrid, Mexico City, Miami, Montevideo, Montreal, New York, Paris, Rio de Janeiro, Rome, Sao Paulo, Santiago, Porto Alegre and Zurich.[42] Sydney was first served in 1989 and flights to London resumed in January 1990 (1990-01).[43]

Privatisation: 1990-2008

The privatisation of the company started being considered under the government of Raúl Alfonsín, when SAS was proposed to become a 40% shareholder of the state company.[47][48][49] This was firmly resisted by the Peronist opposition.[44][50] On 27 December 1989 the next government authorised the privatisation of the airline. The staff had grown to 10,372 by March 1990 (1990-03).[51] On 21 November 1990 (1990-11-21),[52] a consortium led by Iberia and Austral's owner Cielos del Sur S.A. acquired an 85% stake in Aerolíneas Argentinas.[44] Paradoxically, one of the first actions taken by the new Peronist government was to privatise the carrier, after airily opposing to the privatisation propositions of its predecessor.[44][50] The sale of the airline followed the divestiture of the government shareholding in the national telephone company, which took place earlier that month during the Carlos Menem presidency's privatisation wave, intended to divest the participation of the State in a number of enterprises in order to reduce the debt to foreign banks from US$40 billion to US$7 billion.[53] Aimed at favouring the privatisation process, the government absorbed a US$741 million debt the company took between 1981 and 1982 for capitalisation purposes.[44] Despite the carrier being regarded as overstaffed and bureaucratic, it was debt-free at that time, having an average profitability of US$90 million a year;[44][54] it actually had US$719 million in revenues for the year prior to the privatisation.[53] The privatisation contract, which specified the buyer should pay US$260 million in cash and US$1,610 million in external debt bonds, was ratified by the Supreme Court. Furthermore, a clause enabled the buyer to indebt Aerolíneas Argentinas for the buyout process; this was reflected in the airline's 1991 balance, which included debts worth US$390 millions for its own acquisition.[52] It was not until 2009 that this privatisation process would be ruled as illegal.[50]

Revenue Passenger-Kilometers, scheduled flights only
Year Millions
1950 253
1955 353
1960 592
1965 948
1969 1615
1971 2069
1975 3441
1980 6927
1989 8254
2000 11111
2008 12107[2]
2009 11477[2]
2010 13640[2]
2011 13649[2]
2012 14150[2]
2013 17753[2] (projected)
source * ICAO Digest of Statistics for 1950-55
* IATA World Air Transport Statistics, 1960-2000

Austral's owner Cielos del Sur S.A. was sold to Iberia in March 1991 (1991-03), further increasing the Spanish flag carrier's stake in the Argentine air market.[55] Aerolíneas Argentinas and Austral never merged throughout the private era, and remained as separate companies with the same shareholder. Iberia subsequently boosted its stake in the airline to 85% in April 1994 (1994-04) after a US$500,000,000 ($795,577,009 in 2016) cash injection.[44][56][57][58] Out of the remaining 15%, the Argentine Government held the 5% stake it was initially assigned, while 10% belonged to the employees.[45] Furthermore, at this stage the Argentine Government resigned to the voting privilege it had in the Directory of the airline.[44] Iberia was subsequently obliged by the European Commission to cut its stake in Aerolíneas Argentinas as a condition for receiving state aid.[56] It thence reduced its participation to 20%, transferring the remaining 65% to Interinvest/Andes holding, a consortium comprising the Spanish Government holding company (SEPI) –the actual owner of Iberia before it was privatised in 2001– and banks Merrill Lynch and Bankers Trust, among others.[56][59] In July 1997 (1997-07), Iberia cut again its stake in Aerolíneas Argentinas from 20% to 10%, while American Airlines's parent company AMR acquired a 10% stake of Aerolineas Argentinas/Austral's major stockholder Interinvest,[60] equivalent to a participation of 8.5% in both Argentine companies,[61] with the commitment of finding investors for Aerolíneas Argentinas.[62] AMR's 8.5% operation was finally cleared by the United States Department of Justice in early July 1998.[56] By that time, the Argentine Government still owned a 5% stake in Aerolíneas Argentinas.[63] By the late 1990s, the airline was near bankruptcy. Losses had mounted to US$927 million since 1992,[64] totalling US$150 million only for 1999. The restructuring plan presented by AMR, mainly aimed at reverting these losses, was rejected by the SEPI.[65] Furthermore, given that the AMR Corporation did not find purchasers for the company, the SEPI put the control of the airline back into Spanish hands.[62] The vacancy left in the management positions that followed the departure of the AMR holding from Aerolíneas was soon filled in by the SEPI. In order to protect the interests of the Argentine national carrier, the government suspended an open skies agreement between Argentina and the United States that would come into force in September 2000 (2000-09).[64]

The airline had 5,384 employees at March 2000 (2000-03). At this time, the aircraft park consisted of two Airbus A310-300s, four Airbus A340-200s, four Boeing 737-200s, Boeing 737-200 Advanced, one Boeing 737-200C and nine Boeing 747-200Bs, whereas six Airbus A340-600s were on order.[nb 2] The list of international destinations served at the time was Asunción, Auckland, Bogotá, Cancún, Caracas, Florianopolis, Lima, Madrid, Mexico City, Miami, Montevideo, New York, Orlando, Paris, Punta del Este, Rio de Janeiro, Rome, Santiago, São Paulo and Sydney; domestic services to Catamarca, Comodoro Rivadavia, Cordoba, Corrientes, Esquel, Iguazu, Jujuy, La Rioja, Mar del Plata, Mendoza, Neuquen, Posadas, President Roque Saenz Pena, Resistencia, Rio Gallegos, Rio Grande, Rosario, Salta, San Carlos de Bariloche, Santa Cruz, Santa Fe, Santiago del Estero, Trelew, Tucuman, Ushuaia and Villa Gesell were also operated.[66]

An Aerolíneas Argentinas MD-88 on short final to London Gatwick Airport in 2002.

Allegations of corruption were made on the basis of the price paid by Iberia and the Spanish firm's ulterior conduct (including some convoluted lease-back operations), with the airline paying the price for its own purchase with its assets.[44] Subsequent management by American Airlines and SEPI drove Aerolíneas Argentinas into an almost terminal crisis in 2001.[54][67] In June 2001 (2001-06), the aftermath began after the airline filed for bankruptcy protection from creditors,[68] and went into

  • Aerolíneas Argentinas official website
  • Aerolíneas Argentinas old sites (Archives)
  • SkyTeam

External links

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  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j  Archived 7 August 2014 at the Wayback Machine
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  129. ^ a b c d e  Archived 18 February 2014 at the Wayback Machine
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  134. ^ http://www.aerolineas.com.ar/en-oc/prensa/comunicado/3601_aerolineas-argentinas-and-aeroflot-russian-airlines-signed-a-codeshare-agreement
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Citations

  1. ^ Despite Flight confirming the order a week later,[17] the carrier never operated the type.[18]
  2. ^ The airline never operated the type.[18]
  3. ^ China Southern Airlines and Sol Líneas Aéreas, two companies Flightglobal informed Aerolíneas had agreements with,[132][133] are not included in the list of codeshare partners, as of February 2014.[129]
  4. ^ Information concerning seat configuration is accurate for most of the fleet; nevertheless, on some equipment this information differs from the one shown in the table.[148][149][174][175]
  5. ^ These figures include firm orders placed directly by the carrier and those by lessors assigned to the carrier.

Notes

See also

According to the Aviation Safety Network database, the last accident involving a company's aircraft that yielded fatalities was in 1970, as of October 2011; Aviation Safety Network records 43 accidents or incidents for Aerolíneas Argentinas since it started operations in 1950.[189] The company ranks among the safest airlines in the world.[190]

Accidents and incidents

In June 2010 (2010-06), Aerolíneas Argentinas revamped its image to give the airline a more modern appearance.[185][186] The new logo is a combination of light blue and grey colours.[187] Likewise, the previous eurowhite livery is replaced with a combination of the Argentine flag colours plus grey.[187] Subsidiary airline Austral also adopted this new livery, additionally including a red cheatline.[188]

An Aerolíneas Argentinas Boeing 737-800 wearing the new livery.

Livery

Aerolíneas Argentinas has also operated the following aircraft all through its history:[18]

Aerolíneas Argentinas historic fleet
A Boeing 747-400 on short finals to Madrid-Barajas Airport in 2009
A Boeing 737-200 at [178]
An HS 748 at Aeroparque Jorge Newbery in 1972.

Retired

Following is a table providing the composition of Aerolíneas Argentinas fleet, as of October 2015.[173]

An Aerolíneas Argentinas Airbus A340-300 on short final to Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino Airport in 2012.

Current

In April 2013 (2013-04), Air Lease Corporation announced the lease of six Boeing 737-800s to the company, with deliveries starting in November 2014 (2014-11);[156] in May 2013 (2013-05), CIT Aerospace announced the lease of four additional aircraft of the same type, with deliveries starting in January 2014 (2014-01).[157][158] In October the same year, an agreement for the acquisition of 20 more aircraft of the type, worth US$1.8 billion, was announced.[159][160][161] In addition to the lease of four used[162] Airbus A330-200s from ILFC —the first of them delivered in September 2013 (2013-09)— Aerolíneas Argentinas signed in November a memorandum of understanding with Airbus, aimed at acquiring four more aircraft of the type.[163][164] In a transaction worth US$887 million,[165][166] the order was firmed up in February 2014 (2014-02).[167][168] These aircraft will be fitted with GE Aviation CF6-80E1 engines.[169] The first Airbus A330-200 directly purchased from Airbus was delivered in March 2015 (2015-03).[170][171][172]

It had been announced in October 2009 (2009-10) that the carrier was looking for about six Boeing 737-800 aircraft, both to complement the 12 Boeing 737-700s and to replace the ageing Boeing 737-500s.[151] In late November 2010 (2010-11), the airline agreed to lease a further ten aircraft of the –700 series from ILFC,[152] which started being delivered in April 2011.[153] As of November 2012, the airline was considering both the Airbus A350-900 and the Boeing 787-9 as replacement aircraft for the long-haul fleet.[154] The incorporation of leased Airbus A330-200s in 2013 for serving routes to Bogotá, Cancún, Caracas and Miami was also planned, whereas an increased maximum takeoff weight version of the same type was also under consideration to partly replace the Airbus A340-200 aircraft park by 2016.[155]

Aerolíneas Argentinas began modernising its fleet in 2009; early this year, the airline agreed to lease ten Boeing 737-700s and to purchase two more of these aircraft that would act as a replacement for the ageing Boeing 737-200s and MD-80s.[147] Along with the first leased ones, the two brand new aircraft —which became the first ones acquired by the company in 17 years— were incorporated into the fleet in mid-2009.[148][149] In November, the Boeing 737-200 made its last flight on a scheduled Buenos Aires–CatamarcaLa Rioja–Buenos Aires passenger service.[150]

Recent developments

Fleet

  • Aeroflot, on the Sheremetyevo-Madrid and Sheremetyevo-Barcelona sectors.[134]
  • Air Europa, on the Buenos Aires–Madrid corridor[135]
  • Air France-KLM, on some European routes; these companies codeshare on Aerolíneas' services to Córdoba, Mendoza, Rosario, Asunción, and Montevideo.[136] Furthermore, mileage earned by cardholders of Aerolíneas Plus and Flying Blue frequent flyer programmes can be redeemed in either airline.[137]
  • Air New Zealand on the Buenos Aires - Auckland, Sydney - Auckland, and Melbourne - Auckland routes (begins 1 December 2015)[138]
  • Delta Air Lines[139][140]
  • Etihad Airways[141][142]
  • Gol.[109][143] The agreement dates back to February 2014 (2014-02), when a memorandum of understanding was signed.[129]
  • Korean Air on the New York–Seoul–New York and São Paulo–Seoul–Sāo Paulo sectors.[144][145]
  • Sky Airline.[146]

KLM became the first codeshare partner for Aerolíneas Argentinas in December 2012 (2012-12), followed by Air France in October 2013 (2013-10).[129] An accord with Delta Air Lines that was announced in 2012[130][131] has not yet been implemented, as of February 2014.[129] Aerolíneas Argentinas has codeshare agreements with the following airlines:[129][nb 3]

Codeshare agreements

With the mentoring of Delta Air Lines,[119] the company signed an agreement to begin the process of joining SkyTeam in late November 2010 (2010-11).[120][121][122] It became the first South American and the second Latin American carrier in joining the alliance in August 2012 (2012-08),[123][124] as well as its 18th overall member.[125] The airline‍‍ '​‍s cargo division, Aerolíneas Argentinas Cargo, joined SkyTeam Cargo in November 2013 (2013-11),[126] becoming the 12th member airline of the alliance.[127][128]

Alliances

Destinations

Aerolíneas Argentinas is headquartered in the Torre Bouchard, located in the San Nicolás district of Buenos Aires city.[3][118]

Headquarters

As of March 2015, the chief executive officer position was held by Mariano Recalde.[116] In mid-2013, Fabian Lombardo was appointed chief commercial officer, succeeding Juan Pablo Lafosse.[117]

Key people

As of April 2014, the airline and its subsidiaries employ 11,515.[115]

Aerolíneas Argentinas was completely owned by the government of Argentina, as of December 2014.[109] As of December 2013, Aerolíneas Argentinas Cargo, domestic airline Ministro Pistarini International Airport is mainly used for international services,[112] although some regional and a few domestic services are operated as well.[113] The company provides free-of-charge transportation to those passengers that need to change from one airport to the other.[114]

Ownership and subsidiaries

East side of Torre Bouchard, where Aerolíneas Argentinas has its headquarters.

Corporate affairs

Passenger traffic for the group reached a record 8.5 million in 2013, a 57% increase from the time of its renationalization in 2008. Revenues rose to a record of USD2 billion in 2013, an 85% increase from 2008 levels; losses likewise declined from USD 860 million (78% of revenues) to USD250 million (12% of revenues). Corporate assets as of 2012 had tripled to over USD1.6 billion, as the group's fleet grew from 26 to 63 planes and the average age of same was reduced from 20 years to 7.5.[2]

In March 2011 (2011-03), the different unions that affiliate the airline staff demonstrated over concerns the government was looking for local private investors to participate in ownership of the company.[103][104][105] In September that year, the airline emerged from the reorganisation proceedings it had filed in 2001.[106] In late November 2011 (2011-11), the government announced an austerity plan for the company in order to reduce the deficit it has been incurring since being taken over from Marsans; the plan included the revision of unprofitable routes, the reduction of pilot/aircraft pay rates, and the abandonment of obsolete equipment, among others.[107][108]

In May 2008 (2008-05), an initial agreement between the Argentine government and Grupo Marsans in which the latter would decrease its participation in the airline to 35% was announced; in reducing their holding, Marsans would make room for new private investors as well as for the government of Argentina to increase its stake in the airline from 5% to 20%.[85][86] Amid accusations from Marsans[87] and following the disclosure of an agreement,[88][89][90] the Argentine Government took the airline back into state control in July 2008 (2008-07) after acquiring 99.4% of the stake for an undisclosed price; the remaining 0.6% continued being owned by the company's employees.[6][91] At this time, the company had 40% of its fleet grounded.[92] The Act renationalising Aerolíneas Argentinas and its subsidiary Austral Líneas Aéreas was passed by the Chamber of Deputies in August 2008,[93] and became law in September 2008 (2008-09) following the 46-21 vote in the Argentine Senate.[94][95][96] There were disagreements regarding the value to be paid by Grupo Marsans to the government.[97] Negotiations fell through, and an administrator was appointed by an Argentine court in November that year in order to oversee the running of the company.[98] A vote by both the lower and the upper houses of the Argentine congress in support of taking over the company and its subsidiaries took place in December,[99] when the Chamber of Deputies voted 152-84 in favor of the expropriation,[100] and the Senate approved the bill by a 42-20 vote.[101][102]

Renationalisation: 2008-onwards

Marsans group acquired a 92% stake through its subsidiary Air Comet from the SEPI in late 2001,[78] and committed to inject US$50 million capital with the intention of resuming short– as well as long–haul services.[69][79][80] The resumption of international flights started in early November 2001 (2001-11).[74][81] At July 2002 (2002-07), the airline and its subsidiaries employed 7,090.[82] The company exited bankruptcy in January 2003 (2003-01) and emerged from administration a month later.[80][83] That year, the first profit in five years was announced, along with an important increase in market share.[84]

[69] After this, most of the fleet was grounded, and only 30% and 10% of domestic and international flights, respectively, were operating.[74] followed a week later.[77] the suspension of the daily flight to Madrid, which also served Rome and was the last connection with Europe,[76] million debt with the fuel supplier,US$15 Owing to a [75][45] flights to Auckland, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, São Paulo, Sydney and Rio de Janeiro were halted.[74] On 6 June,[73][72][71]

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