News and notes from around the interweb:
- Good read critical of Cathay Pacific’s management culture. Cathay is controlled by Swire Pacific, which is in turn controlled by John Swire & Sons Ltd. which receives 2.5% of pretax profit as a management fee and rotates managers across its businesses even without aviation experience.
- How credit card issuer Credit One Bank prospered thanks to Capital One’s look-alike rebranding
- Le Parker Meridien Palm Springs and New York leave Starwood after January 3. Several years ago Starwood sued arguing these hotels were defrauding the SPG program faking their occupancy levels to increase reimbursement on free night awards.
- In the face of trade sanctions by the Trump administration, Airbus is essentially taking over Bombardier’s C series project with plans to build planes in the U.S.. In the meantime Delta may assign part of its C Series order to Aeromexico (which is 49% owned by Delta) to avoid hefty duties.
Swiss International Air Lines new Bombardier CSeries passenger jet on display at Singapore Airshow, Copyright: prestonia / 123RF Stock Photo
- Bangkok fails to win 3 stars in debut Michelin dining guide. (HT: David H.) I much enjoyed both Nahm and Sra Bua. I never felt the need to visit L’Atalier Joel Robuchon in Bangkok since I’ve been in Paris and Las Vegas.
Though overall I find the value of fine dining in Bangkok to be outstanding in a way that a Michelin guide won’t ever ‘get’. And it’s impressive that one street vendor earned a Michelin star.
Sra Bua by Kiin Kiin
- El Al is the world’s worst-performing major airline stock and they have a pilot problem. Starting pilots earn over US$200,000 per year.
- Here’s who’s getting paid by Delta, American, and United to lobby for trade restrictions against Emirates, Etihad, and Qatar. I believe Reines, who played Donald Trump in the Hillary Clinton campaign’s internal mock debates, left Beacon in the fall.
The partnership has “spent lavishly” against open skies agreements, hiring several Democratic firms, including $1.7 million with SKDKnicerkbocker, and other firms run by former Obama and Hillary Clinton aides. The Partnership for Open and Fair Skies also paid Beacon Global Strategies, led by Clinton alum Philippe Reines, $280,000, and $620,000 to the Messina Group, founded by Jim Messina, Obama’s 2012 campaign manager.
Its spokesperson is SKDKnickerbocker’s Jill Zuckman, also a former official in the Obama Department of Transportation.
…Anita Dunn, the former Obama White House communications director, and Bill Burton, a longtime Obama aide, are both managing directors at SKDKnickerbocker. A private-equity firm controlled by Mark Penn, the chief strategist for Hillary Clinton’s failed 2008 campaign, purchased SKDKnickerbocker in 2015.