Sino-French collaborations in creating a 'customer-friendly' airport
HONG KONG, Nov. 8, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- To promote friendly interchange between the Chinese and French teams of Toulouse-Blagnac Airport of France ("ATB"), and to facilitate the deepening of the ATB team's understanding of the Chinese shareholders and their businesses, CASIL Europe has organized a corporate visit for the team to Hong Kong and Shandong, China on 13 and 19 October 2017 respectively. During the visits, Mr. Mike Poon, Chairman of Friedmann Pacific Asset Management Limited ("FPAM") - CASIL Europe's shareholder, welcomed the ATB team and discussed the recent operations and strategic planning of the airport for the next five years.
Mike Poon specifically expressed his appreciation for the persevering efforts and contributions made by the airport management and all the airport staff since acquisition. He highlighted that the key to successful globalization is enhancing the humanity and care of one's product. As for airport operations, the first priority is to enhance "Customer Satisfaction" and "Service Quality" from both passengers' and airlines' perspectives, and he wishes to achieve this common goal of building such airport together with the ATB team.
Mike Poon said at the welcome dinner that this event was more than a corporate visit, it was indeed a cross-cultural interchange, and he hoped the French team could deepen their understanding of the management philosophy of Chinese enterprises through the cultural and heritage visits. He pointed out that Chinese valued the "human-oriented, courtesy and reciprocity" philosophy and hoped the visit had created an opportunity for both sides to initiate regular interchange while extending the communication channels to more airport staff. "The 300 colleagues at ATB are our key assets. We welcome any suggestions on welfares, working environment and career development. We aim for continuous communications and wish to provide the best possible environment for our people to excel, and to drive ATB development," he added.
Mike Poon believed that ATB should break through the traditional operation model in order to meet the standardization of airport operations worldwide, yet creating ATB's unique values so as to benefit the people of both countries and to attract travelers from all over the world. "Enhancing soft power is the key. That is, to add value based on customer satisfaction, passenger comfort experience at airport and traffic safety. We need to offer a home-like environment where everyone enjoys, and to make flying and working pleasant experience here. In brief, we are here to create a truly 'passenger-friendly' airport with first class services." He suggested adding key indicators such as 'Consumer Satisfaction Index' and 'Service Quality Index' on the annual evaluation to the airport, in order to help every stakeholder, from the shareholders to management team, employees and commercial tenants to have a clearer understanding on their core competitive strengths. Such indexes would also encourage airport staff to have interactive communication with passengers so as to provide better services which in turn supports the sustainability development of the airport.
Mike Poon exchanges experiences of airport operations with ATB team. He said that primary criterion for the performance assessment is “passenger satisfaction”, which comes from all of the aspects that the airport receives passengers from the operational level to the personal level.
Mike Poon hoped ATB would further develop into a gateway airport in southwestern France, and to change the stereotyped perception that ATB as a supporting airport to Charles de Gaulle Airport. "Time will prove that we could turn the traditional transport infrastructure into an effective airport. That would make our shareholders, airport teams and employees proud, and more importantly, to become an iconic symbol of the city of Toulouse."
When presenting the recent operations, Mr. Alain de la Mesliere, Chief Operating Officer and Executive Board Member of ATB mentioned that thanks to the dedication and hard work of all airport staff over the last three years, ATB has achieved rapid development and remarkable achievements in terms of financial performance, passenger volume and flights frequency. It was estimated that by 2023, the annual traffic volume of ATB would reach 12 million passengers. "These outstanding results give FPAM more confidence for its investment decisions as a shareholder. We hope that the ATB team could continue to drive the growth and achieve continuous breakthroughs," Mike Poon commented.
On the basis of "Belt and Road Initiative" being proposed since 2013, Sino-France relations and economic and cultural exchanges have ushered in a new chapter. FPAM teamed up with Shandong High-Speed Group Co Ltd to acquire 49.99% stake in ATB, the 4th largest airport in France in 2015. The project sets a precedent as Hong Kong enterprise to purchase an overseas airport. It demonstrated that Hong Kong enterprise could make use of the advantages of "One Country, Two System" and take the lead to "going out" by investing in European infrastructure, advancing Sino-France economic cooperation.
In addition to visiting FPAM Headquarters, the ATB team also visited the Integrated Airport Centre of the Hong Kong International Airport to exchange with the internationally renowned airport team in the aspects of consumer services, technical & engineering, operation safety and on-site airdrome control. Mike Poon said that every airport needs to create unique passenger experience in order to cope with the global industry development. The Hong Kong International Airport has the highest industry standards and absolute advantages which worth our study.
The ATB management representatives of this visit also includes Mr. Pierre-Jean Carol, Director of Legal Department and Institutional Relations, Ms. Christine Courade, Director of Human Resources Department, Mr. Bruno Balerdi, Director of Non-Aeronautical Development Department, Mr. Thierry Bonnevialle, Chief Financial Officer and Executive Board Member, Ms. Catherine Gay, Director of Traffic Development Department and Mr. Denis Emeric, Director of Technical & Studies Department with accompany by Ms. Sophie Hennion, Senior Vice President from Casil Europe. From FPAM, Professor Victor Sit, Senior Advisor, Mr. Eric Cheng, Managing Director, and Mr. Thomas Wong, Chief Operating Officer also joined the trip.
About Friedmann Pacific Asset Management Limited
Friedmann Pacific Asset Management Limited ("FPAM") founded by Mike Poon in 2000 and headquartered in Hong Kong. FPAM is an experienced investor and operator of aviation ventures around the world. It aims to boost cross-border investment and strengthen ties between regional, national and global economies by adding value to the global aviation value chain. The investment of FPAM on aviation value-chain also includes China Aircraft Leasing Group ("CALC", Stock code: 01848.HK) listed on the main board of the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong, CALC is the first aircraft lessor listed in Asia. FPAM is the important shareholder of Aircraft Recycling International Limited ("ARI"), Asia's first provider of total aircraft solutions for aging aircraft which has world-class aircraft disassembly and recycling facilities.
In 2014, FPAM founded China Airport Synergy Investment Limited ("CASIL"), a Hong Kong-based company which aims to acquire, operate and invest in airports, related assets and aviation businesses globally. Leveraging its close relationship with a variety of countries and effective channels of communications, CASIL focuses on exploring investment opportunities nearby cities.
In December 2014, FPAM teamed up with Shandong High-Speed Group Co Ltd to acquire 49.99% stake in Toulouse-Blagnac Airport ("ATB"), the largest airport in southwestern France. The deal was voted "Deal of the Year 2015" at the Global Airport Development Conference ("GAD") 2015.
Ms. Christy Wong