Smaller cities key to AirAsia's aggressive flight plan for India
“I have faced competition throughout my career,” Fernandes said in a conference call replying to queries about the competition. “When we started off 11 years ago, AirAsia had two planes while Malaysia Airlines had 105; today we have a fleet of 118 and are one of the largest airline s in the market.”
“Also, I do believe that there is space for others in this market,” he added. “All the aircraft in India don’t even add up to the number of planes in Malaysia and India has five times more population. India is a huge market but the aviation sector needs a change in thinking.”
History shows Fernandes’ AirAsia takes competition head-on and ends up on top.
In 2001, AirAsia had a domestic market share of 9.8% in Malaysia and by 2011, it had climbed to become the largest carrier in the country with 58%. On international routes, it had a share of 0.9% in 2001, which rose to 39% in 2011.
Key to his battle is AirAsia’s low-cost structure which has enabled it to offer some of the lowest fares
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