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British Airways unleashes ? 2 million ad campaign in India; focus on Bangalore

BANGALORE: As on 31 October, Heathrow too has got Bangalored! Only in this context, it has got nothing to do with the verb that signifies outsourcing or job loss or cuts (in the West); here, it means air-connectivity.

British Airways (BA), became the first international airline to offer a direct connection between Bangalore and London and more importantly, to offer direct connectivity to Old Blighty's capital city out of five Indian cities.

An advertisement campaign, including a TVC with the tagline - "For India, The Whole World Is Waiting" by M&C Saatchi, at a spend of UK pound-sterling two million has been launched in India. Also, a part of the campaign is a Bangalore specific campaign ? BA?Galore! which Saatchi has jointly created with in-house inputs from BA. Nikhil Advani has shot the TVC.

This incidentally is the last BA campaign for the agency. Starting tomorrow, UK based Bartle Bogle Hegarty will handle the BA ad account.



BA chief executive officer, Willie Walsh, also informed that an MOU has been signed with Air Sahara in July this year and the modalities for providing feeds to the airline, for lounge sharing, frequent flyer miles and other facilities were being worked out between the two.

 

Walsh, who addressed the press about the Bangalore-London flights, said that India was BA?s biggest long-haul market outside the US. He also disclosed that almost 20 per cent of the passengers who earlier flew BA from Mumbai to London were Bangaloreans, and about three - four per cent from Chennai, hence, the addition of the garden city to their route- map.

BA will operate five flights per week from Bangalore, which they plan to increase to one daily. BA is also eyeing Hyderabad next. On the UK side, Heathrow is the only airport where BA flights out of India will terminate, though BA has two main operating bases there - one at Heathrow and the other one at Gatwick.

It was also revealed that almost 45-50 per cent of the BA passengers flew out of India to the US and other shores from London, hence making it an important transit point.

Currently, BA has no plans for a low cost airline or flights (a.k.a. their GO) for the Indian skies, and are looking forward to the deal to happen between Kingfisher Airlines and BA partners Sahara, saying that this deal will strengthen Sahara and the ultimate beneficiary would be the customer.

During 2004-05, BA had a pre-tax profit of UK pound sterling 415 million, operating to over 150 destinations in 70 countries, with over 45 flights a week from India. Their fleet size of 290 includes 121 Boeing 747, 767 and 777 aircraft amongst others.

BA is owned entirely by 260,000 investors, including, around half of BA staff who own shares in the company.

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