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The Alitalia alliance strategy is centred on the goal of reconfirming the company as a global airline, able to offer its clients a complete and modern system of services. From this viewpoint, the evolution of the world scenario after September 11 has called for even stronger commitment.

The dramatic fall in air traffic in fact has left open just one road for continuing to offer a top-level product, with a competitive portfolio of schedules and destinations: cooperation with other partners. In view of the current situation of air transport, being part of an alliance permits achieving major and quick advantages, offering a more complete and extensive product in terms of destinations, schedules and connections: the creation of synergies prompts growth and increases productivity, while economies of scale often make it possible to attain better cost levels.

Such benefits - which turn into positive economic results and Company Growth - not only tend to generate added value for shareholders, but also help foster a more rewarding and stimulating working environment, while high standards of service at more affordable conditions make it possible to satisfy the requirements of discerning and sophisticated clients.
The fact that Alitalia has joined SkyTeam is part and parcel of such a strategy. SkyTeam is the largest alliance at global level, offering clients of the member airlines over 8000 flights a day to more than 500 destinations in over 100 countries.

Strengthening its role as an international carrier, Alitalia is now able to offer its clients:
- A network of connections that makes use of the world’s major hubs: Delta’s Atlanta hub, the biggest in the world;Air France’s Paris hub, Europe’s most efficient; the brand new Korean Air’s Seoul hub, the one with the highest development potential; Aero mexico’s Mexico City hub, the most important in Latin America; Alitalia’s Rome and Malpensa hubs, among the busiest in Europe in terms of traffic, tourist and business respectively; CSA’s Prague hub, a major connection point for East European destinations.

- Procedures identical for all the Alliance member airlines and single check-in. Skyteam flyers who have to change planes, only need check their baggage in at the departure point. The partners are making every effort to provide the same high standard of quality on all their flights and in airports. This means: more uniform and easier to understand information at service points in airports; common passenger assistance policies useful in case of emergency situations, as regards hand baggage, check-in and ground assistance, in case of renewal of bookings, special assistance and answers to clients’ questions.

- Access to over 349 lounges in airports throughout the world for Elite Plus clients and anyone travelling First or Business Class on international flights. Possibility of accumulating Miles and using prize tickets with any Company partner. The “Around-the-World” prizes enable passengers to travel on all five SkyTeam airlines with a single prize ticket. - Code sharing with all partner carriers, is under way with Aeromexico. At the moment the agreement with this company only envisages Frequent Flyer Programme reciprocity.

Training, maintenance, product marketing, information technology, ground assistance and networks are the major areas of activity in which the alliance strategy between Carriers makes it possible to rationalise resources and at the same time offer passengers wider and better quality services. Being a member of an alliance provides each of the member Companies with the advantage of presenting “one face to the market”, and achieving a balance between the independence of each partner in developing its business strategies and that level of integration that warrants maximum economic benefit.
Thanks to the volume of business, to its quick implementation, to the amount of expected benefits and to a series of balanced features (in terms of geography, governance and size), SkyTeam is considered by many independent carriers to be a highly interesting Alliance, with which to discuss in detail the procedures of a possible membership.
To grasp the most significant opportunities and at the same time safeguard the functional features of the Alliance, as well as the already-mentioned positive features, the associate partner concept has been developed, prior to full-membership in the Alliance. In this framework, Alitalia has begun a series of discussions with carriers operating in geographic areas of special interest.
Meanwhile - and at the same time - Alitalia continues to also pursue a bilateral partnership goal, considered crucial for maintaining its competitive position. In this logic, all major agreements remain confirmed: inter alia that with JAL, which has seen an increase in its own schedules from eight to thirteen, and that with Varig.
For the near future, Alitalia is concentrating on extending its cooperation with Air France and exploring forms of more extensive cooperation with Delta and CSA and, afterwards, also with Aeromexico and Korean Air. The fact that Alitalia has joined SkyTeam is therefore a major symbolic and business step forward and strong challenge for the future.
(traslation by Interpres Sas)
a cura Alitalia SpA

On 22 June 2000, in New York, the Managing Directors of Aeromexico, Air France, Delta Air Lines and Korean Air officially announced the birth of SkyTeam, a global alliance of airlines able to offer, daily, 6,402 flights to 451 destinations in 98 Countries and the largest number of non-stop flights between the USA and Europe of any existing airline alliance.
In September of that same year, the alliance was extended to include Cargo services and SkyTeam Cargo saw the light, the world’s largest alliance of airline companies operating in this specific field. Group members are Aeromexpress, Air France Cargo, Delta Air Logistic and Korean Air Cargo.
In October 2000 SkyTeam announced its intention to extend the alliance to CSA Czech Airlines, with the latter becoming a member on 25 March 2001, bringing the number of partners up to five and adding to the network a further 21 destinations in 14 countries. Furthermore, in October 2000, yet another benefit for its clients, SkyTeam introduced a smoking ban on all Alliance flights. In March 2001, Korean Air opened the new Seoul-Incheon intercontinental hub, thus providing SkyTeam passengers with a preferential access point to Asian countries and increasing the growth potential of the airport network.
In May 2001
, SkyTeam opened SkyTeamNet, a communication network aimed at improving the various aspects of flying for clients through greater coordination between alliance member airlines.
In July 2001 came the announcement that Alitalia had joined the alliance by signing the Global Airlines Alliances Adherence Agreement, whereby our Company undertakes by 1 November 2001 to comply with all necessary standards. The value added brought by our Company to SkyTeam consists of 869 daily flights to 21 new destinations in another six countries.
On 29 August, the Executive Council of SkyTeam Cargo, the global alliance that intends providing its clients with the best benefits in the cargo transport field, made official, in Prague, the membership of the new partner Alitalia Cargo. SkyTeam Cargo is the first global Cargo alliance which, through one of the most extensive networks in the world, provides its clients with a system of 7091 daily flights linking all major destinations, especially in the northern hemisphere, where 80% of traffic is concentrated, and offers a top-quality product. In 2000, the SkyTeam partners carried over 15 billion tonnes of cargo per kilometre in the world.
On 1 November 2001 Alitalia became a fully-fledged SkyTeam member. Alitalia clients can make use of the numerous advantages of being part of a global alliance. In January 2002, the SkyTeam airlines - Delta Airlines, Air France, Alitalia and CSA Czech Airlines received the antitrust immunity from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). This enables the four companies to operate transatlantic flights in share codes coordinating routes, flight times, marketing strategies and sales. This authorisation also includes Cargo flights.