Nicole – thanks for your comment. I like that you picked up on the advertising because at the outset it seemed out of alignment with their business model to me as well.
But thinking through, I think the political commentary actually helped them build a much stronger brand identity (while the initial establishment was against a corrupt monopoly, that image is now buried in its history) which is much more relevant to the current day and age. And I see your point about how it could be perceived negatively, but it has played out in the positive angle in India and is now integral to their brand – allowing them to leverage it and diversify horizontally.
Also, for the majority of the Indian population (middle aged, low-mid income with no real avenues to express their political opinions), Amul’s advertisements are an easy way to stay connected and included into India’s “pop culture”.
Hi – great article. I completely agree with Spirit being “the most hated but most travelled” airline. I have had similar experiences with Ryanair (being charged 70 euros because I forgot to print my boarding pass in advance).
That said, Indigo airlines, a low cost player in India has consistently provided great service while maintaining very low prices. It does this by maintaining a single type of fleet (low complexity and high standardisation in operations), leasing rather than buying planes, flying very specific routes, flying to and from airports that have lower taxes, using non-peak hour slots at the airports etc. Do you think some of these could be applicable to spirit to drop costs further and spend some of the savings on customer service? Or would you think that customers would prefer to have the entire savings passed on to them and not have any fringe benefits at all?
Andy, this is a very pertinent topic in the current environment (with a large part of the publishing industry facing these issues). While I really like your suggestion of publishing low cost e-books (having lower screening standards to publish more), I would like to understand a bit more about how Penguin can compete against Amazon self-publishing? If I was an author looking to publish just an online version and my two options were Penguin’s subsidiary (not a well known name and I know that I won’t get any PR support) or Amazon self-publishing (where I get almost 70% of the sales as royalties) I might be inclined to go with Amazon. What do you think?
Tariro – thanks for your interesting insights. I travel with Emirates quite often and it is great to learn more about the company.
Reading through the article, it does seem that they have huge advantages because of their location and the support from the government. Do you think the other countries in this region could pose a serious threat to Emirates in the future if they tried to build a hub around the national airline, focusing on low cost travel? And my second question would be, how do you separate the contributions of aligning operating/business models (which can be replicated) and the contributions from the geographic location (which cannot be replicated by other companies)?