Tag Archives: Tony Douglas

Etihad Airways inks deal with Swae to power AI for innovation

EY_Ifikra

Etihad Airways and Swae, an award-winning startup based in Vancouver, have partnered to launch iFikra, an artificial intelligence-powered platform aimed at unlocking the full potential of Etihad’s workforce by enabling every employee to contribute to innovation. Designed to harness the collective creativity of the organisation, the iFikra platform is a pilot aimed at promoting intrapreneurship by allowing employees to propose innovative solutions to address Etihad’s ongoing business challenges and untapped opportunities. Tony Douglas, Group Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Aviation Group, launched the new platform, reaffirming the importance of innovation within the organisation. He said, “We recognise that there is an abundance of great ideas right here in our organisation and no one knows our business better than our employees, so we developed this tool to give them the platform they need to innovate.” The new platform leverages artificial intelligence to support and augment written business proposals generated by staff, while enabling an open feedback and collaboration learning loop, based on the principles of transparency and meritocracy, to help escalate the best ideas forward efficiently. For the first time, employees have the power to shape organisational strategy by voting, commenting and providing constructive feedback on their colleague’s ideas, playing a direct role in the decision-making process.  Ideas that ‘graduate‘ from the platform will be provided with seed funding and support through Innovate Lab, Etihad’s innovation lab. The Lab supports rapid trial and iteration of promising ideas and projects, accelerating the delivery of prototypes, pilots, proof of concepts and minimum viable products. Soushiant Zangenehpour, Chief Executive Officer of Swae, said, “We’re excited to partner with Etihad on this integration of Swae. We believe Swae’s platform can help Etihad improve the inclusivity and …

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Etihad Airways partners with Ministry of Community Development for exclusive benefits

Etihad image 1 (3)

The Ministry of Community Development and Etihad Airways have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to launch the Etihad Senior Emiratis Basma Programme, which offers UAE nationals over the age of 60 an exclusive programme of benefits when flying with the airline. Etihad has also signed an agreement with Abu Dhabi Airports to provide Basma members with a range of added benefits from the capital’s airport. On the occasion of the launch, Her Excellency Hessa Bint Essa Buhumaid, Minister of Community Development, emphasised the importance of signing this MoU with Etihad Airways to offer an exclusive programme of benefits and discounts for senior Emiratis. Tony Douglas, Group Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Aviation Group, said, “Following in the footsteps of our country’s great leadership, Etihad Airways truly values the contribution of the UAE’s senior citizens to our society.” Users of the Etihad Senior Emiratis Basma Card will be able to instantly access Silver status with Etihad Guest, the airline’s award-winning loyalty programme. Further benefits include discounts on Etihad Airways flights, when booked through Etihad Airways retail offices. Members will also receive 25 per cent bonus Guest Miles, discounts on upgrades using miles at the airport, alongside priority check-in at Abu Dhabi International Airport. They will also be entitled to an additional baggage allowance, depending on the class of travel. Commenting on this collaboration, Bryan Thompson, Chief Executive Officer at Abu Dhabi Airports, said, “Abu Dhabi Airports is eager to collaborate with our key partner, Etihad Airways, on producing tailored and creative offers that will further enhance our customer experience across our services.” Guests within the programme will also be offered a 10 per cent discount at Abu Dhabi Duty Free, as well …

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Etihad unveils fully customised Economy experience at ATM

A320 A321 new Economy 2 LR

Revolutionising the aviation sector once again, Etihad Airways unveiled a major Economy transformation programme starting with the cabin upgrade and refurbishment of 23 narrow-body Airbus A320 and A321 aircraft. The retrofit programme, which includes new personalised wireless streaming entertainment to smartphone and tablet devices, is scheduled for completion in August this year. The airline is also introducing a new and improved Economy dining concept on all its flights as part of a wider programme of enhancements to its inflight catering. Etihad introduced the new developments at Arabian Travel Market, together with a new advertising campaign, ‘Go Your Own Way’, using Fleetwood Mac’s anthemic classic as its soundtrack. As part of the airline’s overall ‘Choose Well’ brand platform, the campaign will drive greater awareness of Etihad’s commitment to providing its guests with greater control, choice and value by personalising their travel experiences. Tony Douglas, Group Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Aviation Group, said, “Etihad has always been a challenger brand, shaping the future of travel as the market constantly changes. We are bringing the leadership and innovation to Economy travel which we have long established in our award-winning Business, First and The Residence cabins. As part of our ‘Choose Well’ promise, we are empowering our guests with more control of their travel experiences, through onboard digital transformation, improved choice and redesigned cabins and products.” Etihad is progressively upgrading the Economy cabins of its narrow-body fleet of Airbus A320 and A321 aircraft. These are used mainly on short-haul regional services, and further afield to 38 Etihad gateways within five hours of flight from Abu Dhabi. The airline is installing modern and refreshed cabins featuring ergonomic Extra-spatial Design seats by UK based Acro, a …

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Etihad Airways signs codeshare agreement with Gulf Air to enhance guest experience

EY_GF_Codeshare Signing

Etihad Airways and Gulf Air have signed a codeshare partnership for travel commencing with the summer schedule. The announcement follows the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the two carriers at the Bahrain International Airshow in November last year and will further strengthen the strong ties between the two countries and carriers. The agreement will see Etihad place its ‘EY’ code on Gulf Air flights from Bahrain to and from Abu Dhabi, Baghdad, Casablanca, Dhaka, Faisalabad, Larnaca, Malaga, Multan, Najaf, Peshawar, Sailkot and Tbilisi. Gulf Air will place its ‘GF’ code on Etihad flights from Abu Dhabi to and from Bahrain, Brisbane, Chicago O’Hare, Jakarta, Lagos, Los Angeles, Melbourne, New York JFK, Sydney and Washington. The announcement was made at a signing ceremony held at Etihad Airways Headquarters in Abu Dhabi, attended by Tony Douglas, Group Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Aviation Group, and Krešimir Kučko, Chief Executive Officer of Gulf Air. Douglas said, “We are thrilled to be signing this codeshare agreement today with our long-time partner, Gulf Air. The signing today is a great example of how two flag carriers can enhance the experience of our guests by providing a greater choice of destinations and world-leading inflight service and Arabian hospitality.” Kučko added, “This is a remarkable event for both Gulf Air and Etihad Airways and we take pride in elevating this relationship further with the signing of this codeshare agreement.”

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Etihad flies world’s maiden flight using bioenergy

Ethihad biofuel flight

The Sustainable Bioenergy Research Consortium (SBRC), a non-profit entity established by Masdar Institute that is part of Khalifa University of Science and Technology, has flown the world’s first commercial flight using locally produced sustainable fuel on an Etihad Airways Boeing 787 powered by GE’s GEnx-1B engines.  The flight from Abu Dhabi to Amsterdam marked a major milestone in the development of a clean, alternative aviation fuel to reduce carbon emissions. The initiative also addresses food security in the UAE through the farming of seafood as a core element in the process. The SBRC partners have been working together to prove the concept of a comprehensive value chain that is centered around the Seawater Energy and Agriculture System (SEAS). This is a synergistic industrial platform that supports the aviation sector, the oil and gas industry, food production and the creation of a new agricultural alternative in the UAE. His Excellency Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister, Climate Change and Environment, said, “The UAE’s visionary leadership is strongly committed to positioning the country as a global hub for innovation and sustainability. In this context, productive cross-disciplinary public-private partnerships are crucial to fuelling research and development efforts and creating game-changing innovations that enable a more sustainable future. Deep decarbonisation of energy-intensive industries has a ripple effect on food security and climate action. Clean, alternative aviation fuels are an innovative and sustainable solution to significantly reducing harmful carbon emissions. The UAE is proud to be a pioneer in this domain.” Her Excellency Mariam bint Mohammed Saeed Hareb Al Mheiri, Minister of State for Food Security, said, “This proof of concept is a ground-breaking development that addresses the challenges of energy, water and food …

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Etihad Airways launches maiden flight to Barcelona

Etihad Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner

Etihad Airways has launched its first-ever scheduled flights from Abu Dhabi to Barcelona. The inaugural flight recently departed Abu Dhabi with a special delegation including dignitaries, media representatives and senior members of the airline’s management team. Tony Douglas, Group Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Aviation Group, said, “There could not have been a better time to arrive here than the month when Etihad celebrates its 15th anniversary. Commercial and cultural links between the UAE and the Catalonia region are flourishing and Etihad is honoured to play a pivotal role in facilitating and enhancing the growth of trade and the strong demand for tourism. This is a breathtakingly beautiful part of the world, with something to offer the most discerning of travellers, and now for the first time, Abu Dhabi is accessible from Barcelona with regular non-stop flights. On behalf of the Etihad Aviation Group, I extend our sincere thanks to the Barcelona Air Route Development Committee for their invaluable support with the new service.” The number of visitors from the UAE to Spain has been rising rapidly, thanks in part to a successful Schengen visa waiver programme introduced for UAE nationals in 2015. The new route will initially be operated five times a week by a two-class Airbus A330-200 before becoming a daily operation from March 31, 2019.

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Gulf Air and Etihad ink deal to enhance guest experiences

Gulf Air and Etihad Aviation Group MoU 1

Gulf Air and Etihad are set to explore deeper cooperation following the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) at the Bahrain International Airshow. The wide-ranging MOU covers scope to introduce joint codeshare operations between Abu Dhabi and Manama, as well as on the global flight networks beyond the two carriers’ GCC hubs. The MOU also contains plans for greater commercial cooperation in the fields of cargo, engineering, guest experience and the optimisation of pilot training facilities. It was signed by Tony Douglas, Group Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Aviation Group and Krešimir Kučko, Chief Executive Officer, Gulf Air on the first day of the ongoing show at the Sakhir Airbase. Krešimir Kučko said, “The relationship between Bahrain and the UAE is strong in many fields, including aviation and with the signing of this MOU, we enrich the relationship by cooperating with Etihad Airways. This is an example of how two airlines can work hand-in-hand for greater mutual benefits. We are happy to work with our friends and colleagues in Etihad and support each other to achieve bigger goals.” According to Tony Douglas, “The deep ties between Abu Dhabi and Manama are well-known in the aviation world and date back nearly 70 years. Therefore, the natural way to build upon those ties is to examine ways in which the two flag carriers can work more closely together to improve business operations and enhance the experience for our guests. We look forward to the Etihad and Gulf Air teams coming together during the next few months to look at how we can put that in place, whether it is in codeshare, engineering, cargo, or through our frequent flyer programmes.”

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Etihad debuts at first China International Import Expo

Etihad Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner

Etihad Aviation Group (EAG) debuts its engaging and multifunctional booth under the theme “Embracing China, Expanding Partnership” at the First China International Import Expo (CIIE) at the National Exhibition and Conventional Centre in Shanghai. The CIIE held from November 5 to 10 aimed at gathering government officials, business communities, exhibitors and professional purchasers from across the world, and providing new channels for countries and regions to do business, strengthening cooperation and promoting the prosperity of global economics and trade. According to the CIIE, about 2,800 companies from more than 130 countries and regions will showcase products to an estimated 150,000 buyers at this 6-day event. Etihad Aviation Group participated in the CIIE as an exhibitor with a dedicated stand covering more than 100 square meters at the trade in services sector in the business pavilion area. For the first time, Etihad Aviation Group exhibited its various business divisions to Chinese and international customers, including award-winning passenger and cargo services and products, state-of-the-art aviation training facilities for pilots and crew, industry-leading aircraft maintenance and engineering solutions, full event and leisure planning services by its destination management division, and much more. Tony Douglas, Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Aviation Group, said, “China is a strategically important market for Etihad. We have steadily and sustainably grown our presence in this country since we first entered the market in 2008. Currently, we operate daily flights between Abu Dhabi and China’s four main gateways – Beijing, Chengdu, Shanghai and Hong Kong – and dedicated 777 freighter services between Abu Dhabi and two key trading ports in China: Shanghai and Hong Kong.” China is the key trading partner of the UAE with non-oil trade expected to rise …

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Etihad and Saudia sign codeshare deal

Etihad - Saudia 1

Etihad Airways and Saudia have announced a new codeshare partnership, providing customers with access to more than 40 leisure and business destinations in the home markets and across the world. The two carriers also announced plans for greater commercial cooperation in other fields, including frequent flyer programme benefits, cargo and engineering, and maintenance. The codeshare agreement was signed at Saudia headquarters in Jeddah by HE Eng Saleh bin Naser Al Jasser, Director General Saudi Arabian Airlines; Tony Douglas, Group Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Aviation Group. They were joined by Jaan Albercht, Chief Executive Officer, Saudia; Ahmed Al Qubaisi, Senior Vice President – Government & International Affairs, Etihad Aviation Group and Ali Saleh, Vice President Alliances & Partnerships, Etihad Aviation Group. HE Al Jasser said, “The new partnership broadens aviation and transport links with the United Arab Emirates, building on the extensive aviation investment and strong foundation in the sector. The added network coverage enables our guests to benefit from added flexibility and convenience, as well as increase the benefits for members of both airlines’ frequent flyer plans.” The codeshare agreement will see Etihad Airways place its ‘EY’ code on Saudia’s flights to Abha, Al-Baha, Alula, Arar, Bisha, Dammam, Dawadmi, Gassim, Gizan, Gurayat, Hail, Hofuf, Jeddah, Jouf, Madinah, Qaisumah, Rafha, Riyadh, Sharurah, Tabuk, Taif, Turaif, Wadi-Ad-Dawasir, Wedjh, Yanbo and Abu Dhabi. Port Sudan, Tunis, Alexandria, Sharm el-Sheikh, Multan and Peshawar are subject to government approval. At the same time, Saudia will place its ‘SV’ code on Etihad flights to Baku, Chengdu, Ahmedabad, Nagoya, Tokyo-Narita, Dammam, Jeddah, Madinah, Riyadh, Belgrade, Seychelles,  Chicago-O’Hare and Abu Dhabi.  

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Tony Douglas appointed as CEO of Etihad Aviation Group

The Chairman of Etihad Aviation Group, His Excellency Mohamed Mubarak Fadhel Al Mazrouei, confirmed the appointment of Tony Douglas as Group Chief Executive Officer, who will join the company in January 2018. Douglas joins Etihad from the United Kingdom’s Ministry of Defence, where he has served as CEO of the Defence Equipment and Support department, responsible for procuring and supporting all the equipment and services for the British Armed Forces. In the UK, he held senior positions with airport operator BAA, and as Chief Operating Officer and Group Chief Executive designate of Laing O’Rourke. His roles under airport operator BAA included Managing Director of the Heathrow Terminal 5 project, Group Supply Chain Director, Group Technical Director, and CEO of Heathrow Airport. Previously, Douglas held senior positions in the UAE, most notably as CEO of Abu Dhabi Airports Company and as CEO of Abu Dhabi Ports Company where he was responsible for the successful delivery of Khalifa Port. As Group CEO, Mr. Douglas will work with the Board and leadership team to expand and implement a range of strategic initiatives to position Etihad for sustained success in an increasingly competitive regional and global aviation market.   The divisional CEOs will report directly to Douglas, including Peter Baumgartner, CEO of Etihad Airways; Chris Youlten, Managing Director of Etihad Airport Services; Abdul Khaliq Saeed, CEO of Etihad Airways Engineering; Gavin Halliday, Managing Director of Hala Group; and Robin Kamark who joins as CEO, Airline Equity Partners in October 2017.

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