AirAsia admits defeat in two-year attempt to break into Japan’s low-cost airline market

Joint venture with ANA abandoned due to disagreements over strategy

The founder of  AirAsia,  Tony Fernandes, deliveing his keynote address during the launch of the company’s prospectus in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia,  on June 10th this year

The founder of AirAsia, Tony Fernandes, deliveing his keynote address during the launch of the company’s prospectus in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on June 10th this year

 

AirAsia, a Malaysia-based no-frills carrier, has admitted defeat in a two-year attempt to break into Japan’s low-cost airline market after abandoning a joint venture with ANA, the Japanese airline, citing disagreements over strategy.

ANA is set to buy AirAsia’s 49 per cent stake in the venture, known as AirAsia Japan, for about $25 million. The development is a rare setback for Tony Fernandes, a Malaysian entrepreneur who has seen his AirAsia business grow rapidly into one of the world’s most successful low-cost carriers since buying what was then a failing state-owned airline in 2001.

ANA said the venture struggled because it sought to save money by applying existing AirAsia systems to a Japanese market far different from AirAsia’s southeast Malaysian base. – Copyright: The Financial Times Limited 2013