tip off

The Joyce who cried wolf: Qantas’ mayday call examined

Qantas lurches from one apparent crisis to another. But investors aren’t particularly concerned. Is Alan Joyce just the CEO who keeps crying wolf? Our business editor examines the case.

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Qantas finds an unlikely ally in small Virgin shareholders

Virgin shareholders are as incensed by Virgin’s capital-raising as rival Qantas — though for very different reasons.

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Virgin’s move on Tiger raises tough competition questions

The ACCC has raised concerns about Virgin’s possible move to buy up Tiger. Ben Sandilands looks at who is competing against whom in Australian aviation.

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Crikey Blogs | COMPANIES|

Qantas v Virgin duke it out in discount fare price war

A price war is in progress in the aviation industry — a classic, bleed yourself to death less quickly than your competitor sort of war, writes Ben Sandilands.

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More stress for Qantas as Virgin confirms key routes

Virgin Australia confirmed what is only the first substantial addition of wide-bodied A330 capacity to key interstate markets that it will make in the nearer term.

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Qantas v Virgin: prepare to be bribed with bonuses

Qantas now has a real threat to deal with — Virgin Australia, with its bigger, cheaper business-class seats, real meals in economy class, lounges with food and seats for everyone. With lower fares.

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Post-grounding, now it’s the Qantas-Virgin bidding war

Qantas and its natural enemy, Virgin Australia, are rolling out a massive and costly bidding war to retain or gain the customers that matter, the ones who fly frequently.

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Crikey Blogs | COMPANIES|

The Boeing 777-X files get updated

During a week in which Qantas did all the heavy ditch digging and Virgin Australia made sure not to interrupt its toils, word came that both carriers have recently been shown some possible developments of the Boeing 777, writes Ben Sandilands.

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Crikey Blogs | COMPANIES|

Virgin Australia agrees to 28% pilot pay rise

In stark contrast to the situation at Qantas, former Qantas executive GM John Borghetti, and VIPA, which covers the largest number of Virgin Australia pilots, have reached an enterprise agreement which provides for pay rises of up to 28%, reports Ben Sandilands.

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Phony war over volcanic ash safety policies between Virgin and Qantas/Jetstar

It could be as much as another week before the ash plumes from the Puyehue eruption in Chile have dispersed to altitudes and concentrations where they pose no risk to flights.

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Jetstar … are you being served? Well, yes, but only sometimes

Passengers flying economy who make connections from full-service airlines to Jetstar will continue on “selected” flights to get meals and the same free baggage allowance as they took for granted on their non-Jetstar flights.

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Qantas does Dallas (and it hopes, the Virgins)

Qantas played the American Airlines alliance card hard today when it announced it would stop flying to San Francisco in favour of new flights to Dallas/Fort Worth.

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Coming to an airport near you…

Memo Canberra and regional sky warriors: the Virgin Blue buzz box, or turbo-prop, is on its way to an airport near you.

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Like a Virgin, rubber ruckus takes Branson to court

Entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson has built a billion-dollar business on the back of his Virgin brand’s sexy image. A recent trademark battle has highlighted the lengths he is prepared to go to protect the brand.

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How Sydney community radio station FBi sold its soul to Richard Branson

Amid the plaudits, questions persist over the commercial nature of FBi Radio’s ‘Ask Richard’ campaign, with subscribers insiders crying foul over the decision to prostrate itself at the altar of the Branson brand.

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Crikey Blogs | COMPANIES|

The road to rocket rides is now paved

The reality of ‘joy flight’ rocket rides into space is getting closer, with the world’s first commercial spaceport now taking shape and Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShip Two expected to begin test flights in the New Year, reports Ben Sandilands.

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Virgin minds its Vs and Qs over its future

Virgin Blue revealed yesterday that the day is coming when all of its airlines — Blue, Pacific Blue and V Australia — will be united under one brand. But why let this “secret” out? Perhaps Virgin are hoping to send Qantas flying into a panic.

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Crikey Blogs | COMPANIES|

V Australia’s 777 buy-up will bite Qantas

Qantas made an incredibly inept decision by choosing to buy a large fleet of Boeing 787 Dreamliners, and not buying Boeing 777s. With the latter optimised for long-haul flights, V Australia’s new 777 fleet will allow it to offer a very attractive alternative to Qantas and Jetstar.

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New York Times | ECONOMY|

Death of the music megastore

Once an icon of the west, music super-stores are now a sad casualty of the booming digital music market and shrinking bank balances. The NY Times visits New York’s last large-scale record store — Virgin Megastore — on its final day of business.

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Logo Design Love | ADVERTISING|

Virgin stretches its brand

Virgin hasn’t exactly kept its logo pure. That said, perhaps it doesn’t need to — after all, it has a brand identity. His name is Richard Branson.

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The Sydney Morning Herald | ENVIRONMENT|

Flannery’s new gig is far out

Environmentalist Tim Flannery has come under fire after accepting a role as Richard Branson’s “environmental consultant” on green space travel.

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Dear Richard Branson: best complaint letter eva

Crikey reproduces an amusing complaint letter that is floating around the interwebs about a Virgin flight, Mumbai to Heathrow on 7 December, 2008.

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Frequently Asked Questions for frequent flyers

Here are a few of the Qs and the As about travelling par avion, writes Ben Sandilands.

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The subprime mess: deals keep falling over and victims keep appearing

A sense of disappointment in some quarters that the US Federal Reserve didn’t cut interest rates overnight but it did acknowledge for the first time that “downside risks” have increased from the subprime mess.

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Virgin deal might steer Austar to Foxtel

Could we be about to see some movement on the Foxtel attempts to buy its Pay TV rival, Austar?

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