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Air France is calling time on its experimental, millennial-focused airline Joon.
While the airline has yet to reach a final decision, a statement posted on its website indicated that it wanted to simplify its portfolio and focus on the Air France brand.
The decision to abandon the Joon project marks a significant break from the past under new Air France-KLM Group CEO Ben Smith. Joon started operating during predecessor Jean-Marc Janaillac’s time in charge but Smith clearly thinks the brand isn’t worth keeping. I
Joon started operations in December 2017 and it serviced both short-haul and long-haul routes.
“After much discussion with employees and customers alike, and in consultation with the unions, Air France has decided to launch a project studying the future of the Joon brand and the integration of Joon employees and aircraft into Air France,” the company said.
“Despite the many positive impacts of Joon, in particular the invaluable contribution of the teams at Joon who launched the company and worked with passion and dedication, the brand was difficult to understand from the outset for customers, for employees, for markets and for investors.”
Air France said Joon flights would continue to operate “until the project is completed,” after which Air France will take over.
Ending the experiment with Joon will help Smith tackle the underperformance of Air France – especially compared with its Dutch sibling KLM. Air France lagged behind KLM in 2018 and new Air France unit CEO Anne Rigail will be hoping for a better performance this year.
“The simplification of the brand portfolio, while capitalising on the Air France mother brand, is an undeniable asset for our employees, our customers, and indeed all stake holders. It would also enable Air France to complete this integration without impacting the efficiency of the Air France-KLM Group,” Air France said.