Dear Guests, Setting its performance standards a notch higher by the year, Turkish Airlines continues to take sure steps towards becoming Europe’s fastest growing and most productive company.
The airline, which has added 61 new planes to its fleet, has captured the attention of the aviation sector with its 24 new foreign flight destinations as well. As a result of these ventures, the Star Alliance of world airlines launched initiatives to add Turkish Airlines to its members. Our current global flight network and key position in certain markets enhances the value of our Company to the Alliance. There are three major airline alliances in the world today. These include the 1997-founded Star Alliance, Oneworld, founded in 1998, and Sky Team, founded in 2000. Turkish Airlines, which has doubled the number of passengers it carries in the last three years, decided to enter into a cooperation with an airline alliance as a way of generating solutions to the growing needs of its passengers. Joining such an alliance means significant benefits for you, our valuable passengers, in terms of flying to more points around the world, earning and spending miles on other alliance-member airlines, added priorities in Business Class as well as use of VIP Lounges and other privileges.
In line with the decision taken by the Board of Directors, Turkish Airlines set membership in an airline alliance as a strategic target and went to work by setting up a subcommission. Since mid-2005 the airline has been engaged in negotiations with representatives of Star and other alliances both in Turkey and abroad, gathering information and documentation. In view of the competitive advantage, material gain, opportunity to further open up to a globalizing world and the contribution it would make to realizing medium and long-range targets, all of which were carefully accessed in a series of analyses, a decision was eventually taken by the Board of Directors to start negotiations for joining the Star Alliance. Full membership in Star Alliance is planned within an estimated one to one and a half years following the signing of pre-agreements. For our airline, this process will be one of preparation and harmonization, including various harmonization projects in areas such as information technologies infrastructure as well as marketing, sales, customer services and ground management.
We would like to share with you that Turkish Airlines, in line with the conditions of innovation and competitiveness brought to the aviation sector by global development, has set its growth sights on South Africa, South America and the Far East in the period ahead and is continuing efforts to expand into these regions.
With an increase from seven to twelve in the number of large-bodied planes in our fleet, we plan to further expand our flights, both passenger and cargo, to distant markets. The importance of Turkey, and particularly of Istanbul, gives us an even greater advantage over other airlines for quickly realizing our goals.
With the pleasure of having recently added the 100th airplane to our fleet, and in the belief that we are going to offer a very important alternative to neighboring capitals in the years ahead, I wish you all a pleasant flight.
Temel KOTİL, Ph.D.
CEO and Member of the Board