The demise of Ansett Australia dealt a considerable blow to Star Alliance operations across the continent, enabling Qantas to further increase their domestic market share - and feed into their Oneworld partner operations.
As Qantas awaits regulatory approval for purchase of a stake in financially troubled Air New Zealand, there is mounting speculation as to the impact of such investment on the two major airline alliances - Star Alliance and Oneworld.
Air New Zealand is a member of Star Alliance - Qantas a member of Oneworld. At a recent press conference in Seoul, the CEO's of all Star Alliance member airlines were jointly asked if Star was pursuing the possibility of attracting Qantas into their alliance. This suggestion was met with not only complete silence, but no active denial either.
Even if Qantas had an interest in switching alliance allegiance, there is a major stumbling block - namely that British Airways (a founding member of Oneworld) owns a 17 per cent stake in Qantas.
When one looks at the active growth and performance of these two global alliances, Qantas must surely envy the way in which Star Alliance has developed, whilst Oneworld has tended to stagnate, lacking the image and prominence of Star Alliance.
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