Qatar Airways’s colorful CEO, Akbar Al Baker, has made a name for himself at the helm of one of the Arabian Gulf region’s trio of fast-growing airlines. But alongside his United Arab Emirates rivals Emirates Airline and Etihad Airways he can claim an additional string to his bow that the other two have so far overlooked: the creation of an executive jet division.
Akbar Al Baker
Qatar Airways has placed a follow-on order for six Boeing 777-300ERs, the companies announced yesterday at the show. Valued at $1.7 billion at list prices, the order brings to 40 the number of 777s Qatar has ordered since it signed its first contract for the Boeing widebodies in November 2007. Boeing recently delivered Qatar’s 25th 777.
In mid-2009, Qatar Airways received two 4,000-nmi-range Bombardier Challenger 605s and a Challenger 300 for new charter subsidiary Qatar Executive. The airline wants a piece of what it believes is still rising demand for on-demand, private charter services.
Qatar Airways (Stand C130) is again at the Dubai Airshow on Emirates Airlines’ home turf evidently to remind its rival that it can’t have this prosperous territory all to itself. Along with Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Airways, the Doha-based carrier has adopted a very high profile as it seeks to take a share of the market to provide long-haul connecting service through its Gulf hub.
Qatar Airways is getting into the private charter business with the launch of its Qatar Executive subsidiary. The new operation, which will be based at Doha International Airport, took delivery of two new Bombardier Challenger 605s in June. The fleet also includes a Challenger 300.
Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker is threatening to pull the plug on a contract for up to 60 Boeing 787s due to what appear to be serious objections to the way the long-delayed program is being handled.
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