May 19, 2020

Air France and Air Seychelles sign landmark codeshare agreement

Air France
European airports
Air Seychelles
codeshare agreement
Andy Nike
3 min
Air France and Air Seychelles sign landmark codeshare agreement

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Air France, a global carrier of French inspiration, and Air Seychelles, the national airline of the Republic of Seychelles today signed a landmark codeshare agreement to provide travellers with enhanced connections between France, wider Europe and Seychelles.

The agreement was signed between Roy Kinnear, Chief Executive Officer of Air Seychelles and Frédéric Gagey, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Air France, and follows the establishment of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the two airlines in April 2015.

The partnership will see Air Seychelles place its “HM” flight code on Air France's domestic flights between Paris-Charles de Gaulle and six of the largest cities in France: Bordeaux, Lyon, Marseille, Montpellier, Nice and Toulouse.

In addition, the “HM” code will appear on Air France's European services between Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Athens, Berlin, Dublin, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Geneva, Manchester, Munich and Zurich. Altogether, Air Seychelles will codeshare on 157 weekly domestic and regional flights.

This, combined with its codeshare service over Abu Dhabi with its partner Etihad Airways, provides unparalleled global access to the Seychelles.

Air France will, in turn, codeshare on Air Seychelles' three-per-week non-stop service between Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Seychelles, and on domestic flights between Mahé and Praslin, the second-biggest island in the archipelago and the home of the famous Vallée de Mai nature reserve. In total, the French flag carrier will see its “AF” code appear on 18 weekly flights operated by Air Seychelles.

Air Seychelles commenced a three-per-week, non-stop service between Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Seychelles in July 2015, replacing a twice-weekly service via Abu Dhabi since July 2014. The flights are operated on an Airbus A330-200 aircraft in a twin-cabin configuration, with 18 Business Class and 236 Economy Class seats.

Codeshare flights can be booked from 19 August, for travel as from 21 August 2015.

Joël Morgan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Transport and Chairman of Air Seychelles, said: “This agreement is the start of a fresh chapter of cooperation not only between Air Seychelles and Air France, but between our two countries, which have deep-rooted cultural, economic and historical connections. 

“It comes in the wake of a bilateral meeting in December 2014 between President James Michel and President François Hollande, who agreed that enhanced air access was essential to moving our relationship forward. We have achieved this by launching non-stop flights to Paris and through this exciting new partnership with Air France. 


“The Seychelles economy is strongly driven by the tourism industry, and France, along with Germany Italy and the UK, represents a very important market. In the first half of 2015 alone, some 18,653 travellers from France visited our paradisiacal islands, 10 per cent more compared to the same period last year. We are confident that, through the new air links we now offer on our combined network with Air France, this growth will continue.”

Mr Gagey said: "Air France welcomes this partnership with Air Seychelles, which provides our customers with new travel opportunities to the popular island group and underlines our commitment to strengthening air connectivity in the Indian Ocean region.

“We look forward to building on this agreement to provide our customers with even more travel benefits, and at the same time strengthening our respective business operations.”

Mr Kinnear added: “We are pleased to sign this major codeshare agreement with Air France, who we consider a valued partner in our network development strategy for France and neighbouring Europe.“We look forward to strengthening our cooperation in subsequent phases, through lounge access and cargo cooperation. Two-way trade between Seychelles and France totalled USD $229 million in 2014, and with 60 tonnes of weekly bellyhold capacity on our Paris-Charles de Gaulle service, there are opportunities for growth.”

Read the August Issue of Business Review Europe. 

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Jun 12, 2021

Re-defining the economics of CX in the new customer journey

CX
customerjourney
Limitless
gigeconomy
Roger Beadle, Co-founder & CEO...
6 min
Roger Beadle, CEO of Limitless looks at how CX can directly Influence revenue generation in streaming services

There’s no shortage of customer service channels for the enterprise to select from today. Regardless of the many new metrics that have emerged – such as customer success, or empathy – cost reduction is still a primary driver in selection criteria.

There are many articles dedicated to how companies can turn customer service and customer experience (CX) from a cost to a revenue centre. The problem is, if you stop there and don’t look beyond cost reduction, you’re limiting the scope for CX to become an even bigger economic contributor in the enterprise.

There is every opportunity for customer service and CX to significantly influence the front end of business, particularly amongst direct-to-consumer subscription-based products and services, such as popular streaming services like Netflix, Amazon, Disney+, as well as sports subscription services like DAZN.

In these products and services and others, there are new customer journeys that may drive business growth and revenue. They start earlier and may last a lifetime, so getting things right at the start of the journey is key so that customers have the best experience from day one.

Not only will this help in making customers less likely to reach out for issues-based support further down the line, but these customers will be much less likely to churn, and much more likely to take up new services as they are offered throughout the lifetime journey.

So, what does the new customer journey look like for these services?

Opportunity waiting for the likes of Netflix & Disney

While consumers may have previously regarded customer service as a way to mitigate the inconveniences in their lives, the customer journey is expanding in scope every day. Today there are many more touchpoints available that put CX in a position to drive revenue.

For one-off purchases, traditional CX deployments have not changed significantly in the past few years. However, if you look at the change in the CX relationships we’re seeing with subscription-based products and services, particularly media-based streaming services, it’s clear that these companies lead what quickly become very multifaceted relationships with their customers. These have serious potential to evolve over time for increased economic benefit.

For any sort of subscription-based business, customer lifetime value is paramount, and the requirement to actively manage a continued positive customer experience is critical.

Every interaction is an opportunity, and every data point is a chance to offer more value. Introductory offers can convert to longtime customers. Longtime customers may take up opportunities to upgrade to more premium products or services. They may also appreciate incentives to invite family and friends to become customers. Consumers who like a particular service, for example, may appreciate a recommendation for another similar or complimentary service.

It all starts with customer interaction, and the customer experience journey becomes an opportunity to strategically affect the user base and resulting revenue - which is a far cry from the limitations of call center cost reduction or churn metrics.

How do companies support the new customer journey?

More and more, customers look at the new customer journey as engaging with brands as part of their lifestyles. Many companies are making brand ambassadors available before the traditional customer journey even starts, which is a marked change from a purely transactional relationship associated with a one-off purchase.

These ambassadors, who are often independent users of products or services, are providing trusted pre-sales advice, and that same trusted advice can also function to nurture the customer journey in a subscription-based relationship. Call it ‘GigCX’ or ‘crowdsourced customer service’ or even ‘peer-to-peer customer service’ - it doesn’t matter.

The key is in providing impartial, trusted advice from real users. Think about it: who would you rather get advice from? Someone who has used a product or service extensively, or someone who has been trained to provide customer service surrounding that product or service?

For services such as streaming media, advice from trusted experts with real product know-how could be invaluable. This may not be limited to technical issues, such as what to do when you can’t access your favourite show, or how to access services across various devices. It could be parents helping other parents who are concerned about how to restrict adult content from child viewers, or simply customers who have similar taste in programming who can comment on the benefits of upgraded or premium products. The point is, these experts are easily available at any touchpoint in the customer lifetime journey, creating more chances to add value.

It’s also about tipping customers from ‘passive’ to ‘promoter’ in the NPS scale. It’s an opportunity to turn neutral customers who may be vulnerable to competitive offerings into loyal enthusiasts who will keep buying and referring others, fuelling growth. It may ultimately help drive even further revenue by creating customers that are helping to sell the brand itself.

And, while chatbots and automation may play a key role, they are often not able to handle the more complex support needed in the new customer journey. Conversational AI is rarely as conversational as it claims to be, and in the new customer journey, most companies are finding that a mix of automation and people-centric service is an ideal way to nurture the many new touchpoints created.

It’s no longer about trying to replace human capital with automation: it’s about orchestrating a uniquely personalised CX, and proactively engaging during the customer lifecycle to enhance the experience, and to create more long-term value.

At the moment, we’re only seeing the tip of the iceberg in terms of the power to affect the economics introduced by the new customer journey. We’ll no doubt see this evolve rapidly particularly amongst streaming companies as they use human-centric connections in CX to support the full potential of customer lifetime value.

About Roger Beadle
Roger Beadle is an entrepreneur and business leader who is reinventing how customer service is delivered via the gig economy. After establishing several businesses in the contact centre industry, Roger co-founded Limitless with Megan Neale in 2016. Limitless is a gig-economy platform that addresses some of the biggest challenges faced by the contact center industry: low pay, high attrition and access to new talent. Previously, Roger and Megan helped to build one of the largest privately-owned outsourced contact center business in Europe, before selling the business to the global conglomerate Hinduja Group. Roger is an outspoken proponent of digital ethics, worker’s rights and the ‘good-gig:’ which encapsulates gig work for incremental pay versus full time work, skilled gig work, no unpaid time/downtime and zero expenses.

About Limitless
Named a Rising Star at Deloitte’s Technology Fast 50 program, Limitless is a gig customer service platform, combining crowdsourcing and AI to help global businesses address their biggest customer service challenges – rising costs, increasing attrition, variability in demand and the need for diversity. Brands like Microsoft, Unilever, Daily Mail Group and Postmates are using Limitless’ SmartCrowdTM technology to connect with their most engaged customers, and reward them for providing on-demand customer service that can flex in line with demand. Limitless is one of the world’s first global tech platforms to introduce localised platform terms to protect the rights of its gigging workers. Backed by AlbionVC, Downing Ventures and Unilever Ventures, Limitless is empowering people worldwide to earn money for providing brilliant customer service for the brands they love.

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