Ryanair-Aer Lingus: 46-route giveaway is biggest unsolved mystery, ever
The 46 overlapping routesThe EU made repeated reference to 46 routes on which Ryanair's takeover of Aer Lingus would result in it having a dominant or monopoly position. These routes have been identified as:
|From||To||S12 WF, Aer Lingus (EI), Ryanair (FR)|
|Dublin (DUB)||Alicante (ALC) / Murcia (MJV) Barcelona (BCN) Berlin (SXF) Bilbao (BIO) / Santander (SDR) Birmingham (BHX) / East Midlands (EMA) Bristol (BRS) / Cardiff (CWL) / Exeter (EXT) Brussels (BRU) / Charleroi (CRL) Budapest (BUD) Edinburgh (EDI) Faro (FAO) Glasgow (GLA) / Prestwick (PIK) Frankfurt (FRA) / Hahn (HHN) Fuerteventura (FUE) Gran Canaria (LPA) Ibiza (IBZ) Lanzarote (ACE) London (LHR/LGW/STN/LTN/SEN) Madrid (MAD) Malaga (AGP) Manchester (MAN) / Liverpool (LPL) Marseille (MRS) Milan (MXP/LIN) / Bergamo (BGY) Munich (MUC) / Memmingen (FMM) Nice (NCE) Palma de Mallorca (PMI) Paris (CDG) / Beauvais (BVA) Rome Fiumicino (FCO) / Rome Ciampino (CIA) Stockholm (ARN) / Skavsta (NYO) Tenerife (TFS) Toulouse (TLS) / Carcassonne (CCF) Venice (VCE) / Treviso (TSF) Vienna (VIE) / Bratislava (BTS) Warsaw (WAW) / Modlin (WMI)||EI (5, ALC), FR (13, ALC), FR (8, MJV) EI (14), FR (7) EI (9), FR (5) EI (3, BIO), FR (2, SDR) EI (20, BHX), FR (20, BHX), FR (14, EMA) EI (14, BRS), EI (13, CWL), FR (21, BRS) EI (17, BRU), FR (7, CRL) EI (7), FR (7) EI (27), FR (18) EI (14), FR (16) EI (30, GLA), FR (11, PIK) EI (14, FRA), FR (5, HHN) EI (1), FR (3) EI (3), FR (4) EI (3), FR (3) EI (4), FR (6) EI (37, LGW), EI (89, LHR), EI (20, SEN), FR (45, STN), FR (21, LTN), FR (31, LGW) EI (10), FR (8) EI (14), FR (19) EI (23, MAN), FR (24, MAN), FR (24, LPL) EI (3), FR (2) EI (7, LIN), EI (7, MXP), FR (9, BGY) EI (11, MUC), FR (4, FMM) EI (7), FR (2) EI (5), FR (6) EI (21, CDG), FR (12, BVA) EI (11, FCO), EI (7, CIA) EI (4, ARN), FR (4, NYO) EI (2), FR (4) EI (4, TLS), FR (4, CCF) EI (4, VCE), FR (3, TSF) EI (7, VIE), FR (6, BTS) EI (7, WAW), FR (3, WMI)|
|Cork (ORK)||Alicante (ALC) / Murcia (MJV) Barcelona (BCN) / Girona (GRO) Faro (FAO) Lanzarote (ACE) London (LHR/LGW) Malaga (AGP) Manchester (MAN) / Liverpool (LPL) Palma de Mallorca (PMI) Tenerife (TFS)||EI (2, ALC), FR (3, ALC) EI (3, BCN), FR (2, GRO) EI (6), FR (2) EI (3), FR (1) EI (6, LGW), EI (28, LHR), FR (8, LGW), FR (15, STN) EI (7), FR (4) EI (16, MAN), FR (5, LPL) EI (2), FR (2) EI (only operated in winter), FR (1)|
|Shannon (SNN)||London (LHR/LGW/STN) Manchester (MAN) / Liverpool (LPL)||EI (21, LHR), FR (7, LGW), FR (14, STN) EI (13, MAN), FR (3, LPL)|
|Knock (NOC)||Birmingham (BHX) / East Midlands (EMA) London (LGW/LTN/STN)||EI (7, BHX), FR (5, EMA) EI (7, LGW), FR (5, LTN), FR (7, STN)|
|Source: EU, OAG Max Online for w/c 6 August 2012 Routes in Bold are also served by other carriers during at least some part of the year.|
Flybe Ireland: The factsAccording to a Flybe Analyst and Investor Presentation from 6 February the following key points had been agreed.
- Flybe would acquire from Ryanair a new company 'Flybe Ireland' for a bargain €1m.
- Prior to acquisition by Flybe, Ryanair would transfer to Flybe Ireland 43 European routes, the requisite slots and licences to operate the routes, a minimum of nine Airbus A320s on five year operating leases, and the required pilots, cabin crew, engineers, management and other facilities to operate the business.
- Ryanair would capitalise Flybe Ireland with a generous £100m ($150m) of cash equity, and would provide revenue protection during transition from Aer Lingus to Flybe Ireland.
- Ryanair and Flybe would agree a business plan to deliver a cost structure that, based on Aer Lingus revenues from the 43 routes in year to 31 March 2013, would deliver a pre-tax €20m profit in Year 1 of Flybe Ireland operations.
Ryanair left with 34 former Aer Lingus routes at DublinBased on analysis of last summer's schedule data we believe that, having handed over the 46 routes to other airlines Ryanair would be potentially left with the following 30 European routes from Dublin, plus transatlantic services to Boston, Chicago, New York JFK and Orlando.
|Weekly Frequency (S12)||Destination (Code, competition)|
|14||Düsseldorf (DUS), Kerry (KIR)|
|12||Isle Of Man (IOM)|
|7||Aberdeen (ABZ), Blackpool (BLK), Hamburg (HAM), Prague (PRG), Zurich (ZRH)|
|5||Bordeaux (BOD), Naples (NAP)|
|4||Bourgas (BOJ), Dubrovnik (DBV), Stuttgart (STR)|
|3||Athens (ATH), Bologna (BLQ), Helsinki (HEL), Jersey (JER), Krakow (KRK), Rennes (RNS), Santiago de Compostela (SCQ), Vilnius (VNO)|
|2||Bucharest (OTP), Catania (CTA), Izmir (ADB), Perpignan (PGF), Verona (VRN)|
|Source: OAG Max Online for w/c 6 August 2012|
|Belfast International (BFS)||Alicante (ALC), Barcelona (BCN), Faro (FAO), Gran Canaria (LPA), Lanzarote (ACE), London Heathrow (LHR), Malaga (AGP), Tenerife (TFS)|
|Cork (ORK)||Amsterdam (AMS), Birmingham (BHX), Bristol (BRS), Brussels (BRU), Edinburgh (EDI), Glasgow (GLA), Jersey (JER), Lisbon (LIS), Munich (MUC), Nice (NCE), Paris (CDG), Rennes (RNS), Rome (FCO)|
|Shannon (SNN)||Birmingham (BHX), Boston (BOS), Bristol (BRS), Edinburgh (EDI), New York JFK (JFK), Rennes (RNS)|
|Waterford (WAT)||London Luton (LTN), London Southend (SEN), Manchester (MAN)|
So what would Ryanair have got if the EU had approved it?
- The Aer Lingus transatlantic routes Ryanair would have bought would have to rely on feed from far fewer routes – unless it was going to agree to codeshare deals with Flybe Ireland (its supposed new rival) and/or operate connecting services from Ryanair's existing hub network at Dublin.
- Ryanair would have given away almost three-quarters of Aer Lingus' Dublin operations (by seat capacity) and be left with a network of 30 European routes to airports such as Amsterdam, Düsseldorf, Geneva, Hamburg and Zurich – airports which Ryanair has never served because it claims the costs are too high.
- Business reasons: An amazing conspiracy to drive up the value of its 30% shares (something far too elaborate for poor salaried employees of anna.aero to understand).
- Political reason: A determination to overcome the opposition of successive Irish governments which all hate Ryanair and act and live with it in a state of war.
- Emotional reason: A simple ambition of some of Ireland’s most powerful men to own their national carrier (the airline business does this to people and, let’s face it, they’ve worked and saved hard and can easily afford a few luxuries without shareholder objection).