Etihad Airways has opened the door to working with and potentially joining Star Alliance as the airline seek to re-invent its business model to include new alliances and codeshare partnerships.
Etihad launched its own partner alliance scheme in 2014 with seven other airlines of which three – Etihad Regional, Airberlin and Niki – no longer operate, while Alitalia continues to struggle after filing for bankruptcy in 2017.
Arabian Business reports that Etihad Aviation Group CEO Tony Douglas indicated the airline could be looking at building closer ties with Star Alliance, beginning with codeshare flights with Star Alliance members, along the same lines as its agreement with Star Alliance member Lufthansa.
“In the past, the Etihad Group was identified as being an alliance itself and, consequently, under the rules of Star Alliance, its members were not allowed to engage in collaboration with us on codeshares,” an Australian Business Traveller report quoted Douglas.
The airline would shift away from a “growth for growth’s sake” strategy and instead “look for sustainable growth”, which would see a role for “partners to build connectivity with their networks through codeshares wherever both parties agree to do so,” he added.