Airline Business looks back at another roller-coaster year for airlines in 2010

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Things are seldom quiet in the airline industry and 2010 proved no exception. It will be a year remembered for a faster financial recovery from airlines than anyone dared hope; when a volcano eruption in Iceland brought European airspace to its knees; and where consolidation fever within the industry took firm hold across the globe.

As the story of the year for the sector unfolded in the pages of Airline Business, we look back at some of the key interviews, stories and news of the last 12 months.

JANUARY 2010 

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Michael O'Leary profile: behind the headline hype, what really makes Ryanair tick

Ancillaries: when every single drop of revenues counts, how close is the ancillary stream to drying up?

Environment: after the Copenhagen climate change summit stuttered and stalled, aviation looked to take the initiative

FEBRUARY 2010 

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CS Chew interview: Singapore Airlines chief executive told us why quality remains key for the carrier

Low-cost partnership: Asian budget carriers AirAsia and JetStar outlined a new co-operation pact

Aircraft finance: a number of factors helped to head off the much feared aircraft funding gap in 2010

Air Astana: Kazakh carrier Air Astana's robust defence kept it off the European blacklist when all other carriers from the former Soviet territory were banned

MARCH 2010 

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Antonis Simigdalas interview: shortly before plans to merge with Aegean Airlines were agreed, we spoke to the man helping to restore pride in the icononic Greek Olympic brand in the newly formed private carrier Olympic Air

Social media: how airlines have been coming to grips with the ever more powerful social media tools

Italian market: a year after the formation of the revamped Alitalia combined with Air One, we looked at how the Italian market was shaping up

Latin America: consolidation in the region began to take hold with the Avianca-TACA merger later followed by the tie-up of LAN and TAM

APRIL 2010 

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Alan Joyce interview: The Qantas chief executive told us how for the airline, two brands are better than one

Aircraft: regional jets may never regain their former glory but smart US regional operators are finding new ways to shine

Africa: what's next for the African airline sector

Tiger Airways: Asian low-cost carrier hits back at critics after completing its stock market listing

MAY 2010 

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Adel Ali interview: why after pioneering the low-cost model in the Middle East with Air Arabia, the airline's CEO aims to expand the airline's empire further afield

Low-cost carriers: accompanying the first of our annual airline rankings of the year detailing the leading low-cost carriers by revenue, we asked whether after sustaining profits through the downturn, the budget airline sector had come of age

Ash cloud crisis: we looked at what lessons had been learned after the volcanic ash cloud brought European airspace to a standstill

JUNE 2010 

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Alex Cruz interview:  a year after Vueling' successful merger with Clickair, we looked at how the integration had worked and what lay ahead for the Barcelona budeget carrier

Airport traffic: our annual airport traffic rankings showed that while overall passenger numbers slumped in 2009, some airports were still able to thrive

United-Continental: US consolidation took a further leap with the Star Alliance partners teaming up

Emirates A380: Middle East giant tooks its commitments for A380s to an eye-popping 90 with a further order during the ILA show in Berlin

JULY 2010 

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Birkir Holm Gudnason: a banking collapse and then a volcanic eruption that caused him to uproot his airline have all been in a days work for Icelandair's youthful chief executive

IATA AGM: the industry met in Berlin amid growing optimism of signs of the much needed yield recovery, but were given an untimely reality check when Germany announced plans for a new aviation tax. Where Giovannia Bisignani announced his plan to step down in 2011 with a bold long-term vision for how the industry should be transformed by 2050. Airline Business was at the AGM in force to get an industry healthcheck, producing three daily papers and a series of video interviews with leading industry executives

AUGUST 2010 

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Dave Barger interview: JetBlue's chief executive told us about the challenges and opportunities ahead for the US carrier as it enters its second decade

World Airline Rankings: Our annual listing of the top 150 carriers by revenue and top 200 by traffic showed just how much toll the economic crisis took on the airlines as revenues among top 150 airlines dropped 11%. We looked in detail at the current state of the market with Airline Revenue Map infographic and asked what lessson had been learned during the crisis.

SEPTEMBER 2010 

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Hussein Massoud interview: EgyptAir's chief executive spoke about the carrier's expansion ambitions and hopes to build on its Star Alliance membership

Farnborough air show: a huge batch of orders and commitments from aircraft lessors dominated the Farnbrough air show and underlined continued long-term confidence in the industry

Ownership rules: while alliance joint ventures and concessions on ownership rules have eaten away at the edges of industry ownership and control caps, what will it take to change them?

Routes: airports and airline network planners alike looked to futue growth as the industry met for the annual route development forum in Vancouver. Airline Business was there and produced three daily papers from the event

OCTOBER 2010 

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Richard Anderson interview: the head of the US giant recounts building the world's largest airline during the worst down cycle in living memory

European regionals: executives at the region's regional carriers gathered for their annual general meeting after a year that had forced them to seek out new niches and innovative ways to make ends meet

Cargo: the air-freight sector, so badly hit by the economic crisis in 2009, hit back strongly during the year. But confidence in full-freighter business was shaken

NOVEMBER 2010 

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Steven Udvar-Hazy interview: the guru of the aircraft leasing industry came back in 2010 and told us about his new venture Air Lease

Industry profits: industry outperforms forecasts but IATA sounds warning of tougher year ahead

Alliance strategy: 2010 marked probably the busiest year yet for the global alliances, with a string of new recruits

Consolidation: joint venture fever continued to take hold as British Airways long-sought transatlantic tie-up with oneworld partner American Airlines finally came to fruition after 14 years

DECEMBER 2010 

 

 

25th anniversary: Airline Business marked its silver anniversary with a landmark issue and interactive package, featuring personal reflections on the last 25 years and the challenges ahead from 25 of the most influential figures who have helped shape the industry over the last quarter decade. We also produced special timeline of the most significant events over the last 25 years, videos, personal messages and analysis of the key developments of the last 25 years.

 AND FINALLY

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ALTA dailies: as the year ended, we produced three daily papers from as leaders from the one of the most dynamic, and profitable, airline markets - Latin America - met for the annual ALTA leaders forum

Airbus A320 NEO: the European airframer made it long-talked move to launch a new engine option for the A320

Forecast 2011: And what's in store for 2011? Here's a take on some of the key areas to watch.