Delta is now the world's second largest airline brand by passenger numbers, a position it achieved as a result of its 2008 acquisition of US competitor Northwest. (It lost the global #1 position in 2016 following the merger of American Airlines and US Airways). However it remains primarily a domestic carrier, with more than 1,000 flights a day out of its Atlanta hub to 224 US destinations. Its system is also fed by a network of independent regional US carriers operating under Delta livery. Revenue passenger miles for 2017 were 217.7bn. Total passengers carried were around 185m. Internationally, Delta is one of the founder members of Skyteam, the marketing alliance which also now includes transatlantic joint venture partner Air France-KLM. In 2012 it agreed to acquire Singapore Airlines' 49% shareholding in Virgin Atlantic of the UK, and completed acquisition of a similar equity investment in Aeromexico in 2017. It also has a small holding in Brazil's GOL and alliances with Korean Air, China Eastern and China Southern. However revenues have been flat for several years. Topline for 2017 was $41.2bn, up 4%. Ed Bastian succeeded Richard Anderson as CEO in 2016. Delta was originally founded in 1924 as a crop-dusting service, which extended its reach into commercial and passenger services in the 1930s. It expanded nationally and internationally through acquisitions including Northeastern in 1972 and Pan Am in 1991. Subscribers may access account assignments and contact information. The searchable account assignments database is available to full subscribers to Adbrands.net premium services. Click here to access Adbrands account assignments (subscribers only); or see here for information on how to subscribe.
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Capsule checked15th January 2018
Adbrands Weekly Update 8th Mar 2018: Ads of the Week "Runways". Here's a fabulous new campaign for Delta Air Lines from regular agency Wieden & Kennedy New York. These ads are always good, often unexpectedly arty and off the wall, like the recent one that featured only the undercarriage view of a runway's white lines as a passenger jet speeds towards take-off. This one uses a similar runway concept but in quite a different way. It starts low-key but then builds slowly to a soaring climax. Superb use of unusual camera angles and the rising whine of that engine will definitely get your heart beating faster by the end of the ad. The simplest of ideas, but executed with great originality.
Adbrands Weekly Update 3rd Aug 2017: Sir Richard Branson is to surrender majority control of the Virgin Atlantic airline as part of a wide-ranging strengthening of its existing Transatlantic alliance with Delta Airlines of the US and Air France-KLM. Delta already has a 49% stake in the company, acquired from Singapore Airlines in 2014. Now Air France-KLM will purchase a 31% stake from Branson for around £220m. Virgin Group will retain the remaining 20%. At the same time, Delta and its Asian partner China Eastern Airlines will each acquire a 10% holding in Air France-KLM. Branson said Virgin Atlantic will continue to fly under its current name.
Adbrands Weekly Update 18th Feb 2016: Ads of the Week "Tell The World". Wieden & Kennedy New York's latest for Delta Airlines is typically stirring. It features some striking imagery - it's not every day you get a Great White in an airline ad - and Donald Sutherland's voice is always a treat, but if we're honest that script is perhaps a little more portentous than necessary. Such gravitas might be justified for a trip to the moon, but this is a journey that Delta's pilots deliver around 5,400 times every single day.
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