Stakeholders and Communication audit: Qantas Airlines2007BackgroundQantas Airlines, established in 1920, is the second oldest independent airline that is still in operation. Qantas (the name being the short form of Queensland and Northern Territorial Airlines Service, as it was originally called) is now the largest airline company in Australia and has services from Sydney and New South Wales. The main domestic and international hubs of Qantas are the Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane airports. Qantas was privatized in 1992 after the Australian government sold Australian Airlines to the company. In December 2006, a private equity consortium led by Macquarie Bank, Airlines Partner Australia, announced a takeover bid for $11.1 billion.
Although the memorandum of Qantas does not allow a foreign entity to hold more than 49 percent, individual shareholders not more than 15 percent and a foreign airline not more than 25 percent, the consortium members that are not of uniform nationality have bid for the maximum of 25 percent individually (Thomas, 2006). Once the Qantas shareholders ratify the bid that has already been accepted by the board, the company would once again become an unlisted one as it was previous to 1992.
In the domestic market, Qantas’ main competitor has been Virgin Blue, a low-cost carrier, after Ansett Airlines shut down in 2001. Qantas’ market share rose 90 percent largely as a result of Ansett’s collapse as well as the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack in New York, which resulted in a downward spiral in the United States aviation and tourism industry and converted tourism flow to other parts of the world. Qantas ordered for a Boeing 737-800 aircraft in 2001 and took delivery in three months, reflecting the lack of demand for aircrafts in the US.
However, Virgin Blues also stepped up its aggressive business operations and eventually Qantas’ market share in domestic aviation came down to 60 percent. In 2004, Qantas too joined the bandwagon of discount aviation and launched the Jetstar Asia Airways, in which it owns 44 percent share. This marked Qantas’ foray into the Asian aviation routes. This followed from Qantas’ failed attempt to buy a majority share in Air New Zealand in 2003 and entering the trans-Tasman routes with Jetstar’s flight routes to New Zealand (wikipedia).
IntroductionThere are a number of stakeholders that affect an organization and are also affected in turn. Collectively, the stakeholders decide the specific direction that the organization and industry adopts. The stakeholder theory was first suggested by Freeman (1984), who defined a stakeholder of an organization as “any group or individual who can affect or is affected by the achievement of the organization’s objectives” (quoted in Jonker, 2004). The organization needs to manage the stakeholders effectively for a collective development process through proper identification of stakeholders, set up processes to organize relationships with the stakeholders as well as the transactions with them. In this paper, stakeholder grouping for Qantas Airlines will be undertaken, taking into consideration the particular nature of the aviation industry in the country as well as the organizational nature of the company.
Thereafter, Qantas’ communication strategy will be analyzed to see whether it successfully addresses the stakeholders’ concerns.