Mumbai: Global airlines grouping Oneworld has said that it is open to taking onboard an Indian carrier provided it complements other members and has high service standards like Kingfisher Airlines, which has now been grounded due to financial troubles.
“If someone like Kingfisher wants to work with us and have quality products, we will certainly consider,” Oneworld chief executive Bruce Ashby said during an interaction with the media on the sidelines of a function to mark SriLankan Airlines joining the alliance past week in Colombo.
SriLankan Airlines, the first from the sub-continent, joined the elite club of global airlines from May 1.
There are three airlines groupings — Star Alliance, SkyTeam and Oneworld. Star Alliance, which the national carrier Air India is expected to join from July, is the largest of the three with 26 members followed by SkyTeam with 19 members and Oneworld with 15 members.
While Oneworld has carriers like American Airlines, Cathay, British Airways, Qantas and Qatar Airways, Star Alliance has Singapore Airlines, Lufthansa, Scandinavian, Air China, and Turkish Airlines, among its members.
Stating that the alliance is close to taking onboad a domestic carrier in the club, Ashby said he feels “very bad” at the Kingfisher experience as all that (grounding) happened before they could be part of the league.''
The Vijay Mallya-promoted carrier Kingfisher was taken into the premier alliance as a member-elect way back in 2010, but before it could officially join the alliance, the carrier sank into financial distress, leading to its grounding on October 1, 2012.
Ashby said, however, Oneworld did not have serious discussions with any domestic carrier following the Kingfisher episode.