Qantas Airways Limited (Qantas) is an Australian based airline group, engaged in the operation of both domestic and international air transportation services. Qantas, with revenue of almost sixteen billion dollars in the 2013 Australian financial year (Qantas Airways Limited, 2013), competes in four main market segments with business units including Qantas Domestic, Qantas International, Jetstar and Qantas Loyalty. Within these business units, Qantas also operate a range of synergistic subsidiaries including Q Catering, which provides food and beverage services of all its airline business along with Q Freight, Australia’s largest independent air freight services Supporting the airline operations is the investment or partnership in a range of infrastructure holdings, including terminals and passengers lounges throughout the world (Qantas Airways Limited, 2014).
Qantas has maintained a consistently strong share in the local market, holding some 65% of the domestic travel business and 85% of corporate travel markets (Qantas Airways Limited, 2013). Conversely, the airline has faced increasing international market share pressure, with increased competition, particularly on North Atlantic routes on which it has traditionally held a monopoly. A sustained spike in fuel and consequent overhead prices, the reduced competitiveness of an ageing fleet, along with increased labour costs through a heavily unionised workforce, have all combined to deliver a severe blow to the airlines overall profitability. In recent years, the power of the unionised workforce to hold the airline to ransom was evidenced by the ultimate grounding of the fleet in 2011 by Chief Executive Officer, Alan Joyce, as he locked out the disputing workforce and subjected passengers to massive delays (Singer, 2011).
Although now operating on a dual brand basis, with the addition of the Jetstar low cost carrier service to augment both the domestic and international businesses in 2003, one of Qantas’ key strengths is its iconic brand. The international business is distinguished by its highly recognisable flying kangaroo on a primarily red background and this logo has remained largely unchanged since 1984, having its origins in a 1944 design which was adapted from the Australian one penny coin (Qantas Airways Limited, 2014). Undergoing only subtle reiterations in the past thirty years, the logo is instantly recognised throughout the world, as the high contrasting white and red liveries of the Qantas fleet regularly visit over 850 destinations in 139 countries around the globe (Qantas Airways Limited, 2014).
Adding to this strength is Qantas International’s positioning as the Australian flagship airline brand. Qantas has successfully ingrained this position as Australia’s national carrier, launching a campaign in 1994 after securing the rights to Peter Allen’s iconic song, “I Still Call Australia Home”. This highly emotive campaign debuted during the 1994 AFL Grand, featuring Allen’s song...