CEO Blog

15 August 2018

Written by Ravindra Bhagwanani on . Posted in Archives

AC

The chaos and panic at Aeroplan (or rather at its owner Aimia) could have filled this newsletter on its own as several, contradicting actions occurred over the last month. First, Aeroplan announced that it would launch charter flights to popular destinations as of 2020 to allow members to redeem miles. Also, the ability for members to transfer miles to other Frequent Flyer Programs was announced. Days later, Air Canada announced that it had made an offer to buy back Aeroplan from Aimia, but Aimia rejected the offer later on. Then Aeroplan announced that small Canadian regional airline Porter Airlines (only operating a limited network in eastern Canada and the US) would become Aeroplan’s preferred airline partner as of 2020 – not necessarily the kind of airline that could replace Air Canada and its Star Alliance partners. Again a few days later, Aeroplan announced that a deal with oneworld would come to life to offer redemption capacity to Aeroplan members. The only thing, which is becoming clear is that nothing is clear and that all these activities, although well intended, contribute to making members panic and cash in their miles as soon as possible. That is certainly not going to help Aimia with its financial troubles either! In the wake of all these activities, AeroMexico also approached Aimia to buy back the 49% stake it holds in AeroMexico’s Club Premier program, but Aimia turned down that offer as well since it considered it undervalued. But the final word in all this is certainly not yet spoken and it is likely that things will turn out differently in the end than what might be expected today.