Is Qantas planning to name its new premium Asian airline RedQ?

Ever since Qantas announced that it intended to setup a new airline which would cater to the premium traffic in Asia there have been hundreds of name floating around for the same with the most popular one being “Qantasia”.

Earlier this week in a quick application to the Australian Intellectual Property regulator, Qantas has managed to trademark “RedQ”, “RedSky” and “OneAsia”. As per the filing the company has also secured rights for the name “RedQ Executive Flyer”. This leads me to believe that Qantas plans to name its new Asian Premium airline “RedQ” and to possibly safeguard the other options under discussion they have registered the same.

The new airline is planned to specifically target the new rich and affluent class in Asia primarily the Chinese and it plans to serve them using it’s Asian hub either in Singapore or Kuala Lumpur. Ironically these trademarks have neither been registered in Singapore nor Malaysia.

The planned airline in which Qantas plans to hold a minority stake has been created with the specific purpose of obtain the Asian landing rights  and help feed passengers to the Qantas hubs for further international traffic to be served by the parent airline.

In my opinion this move in itself is tactically flawed, instead of dealing with the core issue of managing it’s higher operating costs and increasing efficiency in it’s processes Qantas has chosen to add another airline brand (it already runs the low-cost Jetstar subsidiary) which will only lead to fragmentation of products instead of providing any benefits in terms of either enhanced traffic or synergies with the Oneworld partners (given that OneWorld partner Cathay Pacific would definitely be irked by this move).

The details are still sketchy at the moment so we would need to wait and watch as to how things shape what kind of strategy does the airline adopt to differentiate itself from the existing products. The main question about what benefits do the Qantas frequent flyers get out of this still remains. Let’s hope that Qantas is able to come out with the answers to all these questions soon.

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