Intervju: Rickard Gustafson om allianser, SAS-krisen och flygbranchens framtid met SAS president, Rickard Gustafson, for a conversation about the significance of alliances, SAS crisis and not least the European aviation industry’s future. Gustafson also reveals little about the future plans for Blue1.     Alliances have come to stay Rickard Gustafson insist that the alliances have come to stay, but recalls that even though the airlines are working closely together, are also competitors.   ”The alliances we are good friends and competitors at the same time. But SAS wants to offer what we believe is best for our customers. For example, Cathay Paciffic a good partner for us in Hong Kong even if they are not in the Star Alliance, ”he   says.” But we will never have the same tight partnerships with companies that are not in the same alliance. European airlines need to consolidate  ”In the US, airlines have managed to consolidate itself and generate profitability. Which has managed to achieve a better balance between supply and demand,  ”says Gustafson He keeps on going:” Europe needs to go through a similar evolution. We need a consolidation. I would not tell about SAS’s role in it. Our philosophy is to build a strong and well-functioning business. If we do, we become active in the future consolidation of the market – and it’s better than being a burden, ”he said.  The battle for customers is on the ground and not in the air Rickard Gustafson argues that board products in Europe will become more harmonized . It will come not so much difference in service between low cost and network carriers – at least not on board the aircraft.  ”Generally, the flight time quite short in Europe and that makes it difficult to pursue a high level of service onboard. However, the network carriers to take the fight to the ground and investing in services that make the trip faster and more efficiently, ”he says. SAS will be strong in the medium and  long-haul” At SAS, we will use energy to become skilled at flying at medium and long distances . These lines will be complemented by propeller aircraft and smaller regional jets. We will not do ourselves. We will be partners of. That is exactly what is thought with Blue1 and Transavia.  ”Says Gustafson. The plans for Blue1? The subsidiary, Blue1, currently flying a small fleet of Boeing 717s, which will soon be phased out. What are the plans for the company going forward?” We are negotiating right now if the takeover of the 8 regional jets. We have come quite far in the negotiations and it is very possible that Blue1 to come to work with a partner. But it is too early to say anything about yet,  ”says Rickard Gustafson for decision on future fleet will soon be taken SAS currently has an order with Airbus on the 30 st A320neo which should become available during the next year. It is not enough to replace the current fleet of Airbus and Boeing aircraft. ”Within the next 15 to 20 months, we’ll make decisions about future fleet” says Gustafson From crisis to confidence in 2012 was the SAS on the brink of ruin – only minutes away from bankruptcy. Today, are investing again in the future. How has it been to go through such a transformation? ”It is clear that there has been a major challenge – not just for me – but even more for all employees at SAS: It is they who have done the work and those who have contributed to the great change that has made ​​us competitive. Just because we can now open new lines. It had never happened without the contribution made ​​by employees in all parts of the business. ”Says Rickard Gustafson.” I am delighted that we show that we can and the great desire that all employees have. I think this is stakt  ”he continues. SAS and future?” We have existed for 70 years, and has plans to exist the next 70 years as well, but we know we can not take our customers for granted. We will continue to invest and we must continue to adapt to the outside world, which is in continuous change. We have much to improve, but we will also be ready. ”Concludes Rickard Gustafson.


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