|Founded||1 August 1946|
|Airport lounge||Scandinavian Lounge & Business Lounge|
|Fleet size||135 (+46 orders and 11 options)|
|Company slogan||Service and simplicity.|
|Parent company||SAS Group|
Part of the SAS Group and headquartered at Stockholm Arlanda Airport (ARN) in Sigtuna, Sweden, the airline operates 182 aircraft to 90 destinations. The airline's main hub is Kastrup or Copenhagen Airport, which is the main European and intercontinental hub. Somewhat smaller hubs also exist at Oslo Airport, Gardermoen and Stockholm-Arlanda Airport.
In 2011, SAS carried 22.9 million passengers, achieving revenues of SEK 38 billion. This makes it the eight-largest airline in Europe. The SAS fleet consists of Airbus A319, A320, A321, A330 and A340, Boeing 737 Classic and Next Generation, Bombardier CRJ900 and McDonnell Douglas MD-82.
The airline was founded in 1946 as a consortium to pool Det Danske Luftfartselskab's, Svensk Interkontinental Lufttrafik's and Det Norske Luftfartselskap's transatlantic services. European and domestic cooperation started two years later and, in 1951, the airlines merged to create SAS.
SAS is a founding member of the Star Alliance.
|This section requires expansion. (September 2011)|
|This section needs additional citations for verification. (June 2009)|
The airline was founded on 1 August 1946, when Svensk Interkontinental Lufttrafik AB (an airline owned by the Swedish Wallenberg family), Det Danske Luftfartselskab A/S and Det Norske Luftfartselskap AS the flag carriers of Denmark and Norway formed a partnership to handle the intercontinental air traffic of these three Scandinavian countries. Operations started on 17 September 1946. In 1948 the Swedish flag carrier AB Aerotransport joined SAS and the companies coordinated European operations and finally merged to form the SAS Consortium in 1951. When established, the airline was divided between SAS Danmark (28.6%), SAS Norge (28.6%) and SAS Sverige (42.8%), all owned 50% by private investors and 50% by their governments.
In 1954 SAS was the first airline to schedule a polar route. The DC-6B flew Copenhagen to Los Angeles with stops in Søndre Strømfjord, Greenland and Winnipeg, Canada; in summer 1956 it was thrice weekly. It was popular with Hollywood celebrities and production people and the route was a publicity coup for the airline. Thanks to a price structure which allowed free transit to other European destinations, this trans-polar route gained popularity with US tourists in the late 1950s. Starting in 1957, SAS DC-7Cs flew to Japan via Greenland and Alaska, since the Soviet Union did not allow SAS to fly across Siberia and China was closed to overflights.
SAS gradually acquired control of the domestic markets in all three countries by acquiring full or partial control of local airlines, including Braathens and Widerøe in Norway, Linjeflyg and Skyways Express in Sweden and Cimber Air in Denmark. In 1989, SAS acquired 18.4% of Texas Air Corporation, parent company of Continental Airlines, in a bid to form a global alliance. This stake was later sold. During the 1990s, SAS also bought a 20% stake in British Midland. SAS bought 95% of Spanair, the second largest airline in Spain, as well as Air Greenland. There are plans to dispose of all of these holdings and an agreement to divest more than 80 percent of the holdings in Spanair was signed with a Catalonian group of investors led by Consorci de Turisme de Barcelona and Catalana d'Inciatives in January 2009.
In May 1997 SAS formed the global Star Alliance network with Air Canada, Lufthansa, Thai Airways International and United Airlines. Four years earlier SAS unsuccessfully tried to merge with KLM, Austrian, and the now defunct Swissair, in a project called Alcazar. This failure led to the departure the following year of CEO Jan Carlzon, who was credited for the financial turnaround of the company starting in 1981 and who envisioned SAS ownership of multiple airlines worldwide. The ownership structure of SAS was changed in June 2001, with a holding company being created in which the holdings of the governments changed to: Sweden (21.4%), Norway (14.3%) and Denmark (14.3%) and the remaining 50% publicly held and traded on the stock market.
In 2004 Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS) was divided into four companies; SAS Scandinavian Airlines Sverige AB, SAS Scandinavian Airlines Danmark AS, SAS Braathens AS and SAS Scandinavian International AS. SAS Braathens was re-branded SAS Scandinavian Airlines Norge AS in 2007. In October 2009 the four companies were once again united into one company, SAS Scandinavian System AB.
With the coming of low-cost airlines and decreasing fares in Scandinavia the business turned into the red. To be profitable again, the airline had to cut costs. In a first step the airline sold its stakes in other companies, such as bmi, Spanair and AirBaltic, and began to restructure its operations. This was to save costs by about 23 percent between 2008 and 2011. The next big cost-cutting measure followed by the end of 2011. It should generate cost savings of another three to four percent until 2015. In June 2012 the airline announced that they will extend this measure. In November 2012 the company came under heavy pressure from its owners and banks to implement even heavier cost-cutting measures as a condition for continued financial support. Negotiations with the respective trade unions took place for more than a week and exceeded the original deadline, but in the end SAS and the trade unions reached an agreement that would increase the worktime, and thus keep the airline flying. Despite the ultimatum given from SAS, no cuts in salaries were needed. SAS drew some criticism for how they handled the negotiations, in denying facilities to the union delegations.
A previous SAS head office was located on the grounds of Bromma Airport in Stockholm. Until 2011, the SAS head office was located in Frösundavik, Solna Municipality, Sweden, near Stockholm. which was designed by Niels Torp Architects and built from 1985 through 1987. The move from Solna to Arlanda was completed in 2010.
Besides the agreements SAS has with its Star Alliance partners, SAS also has strategic agreements with Lufthansa, Swiss, Austrian and United. The agreement includes code sharing and schedule coordination to facilitate improved connections between SAS and its partner airlines. SAS also co-operates with the other airlines in the SAS Group.
The key trends for Scandinavian Airlines (which includes SAS Cargo, SAS Ground Handling and SAS Tech), but not including the SAS Group's 'individually branded airlines', for example Widerøe, are shown below (as at year ending 31 December, except 2012 figures, for the 10 months to 31 October):
|Profits (EBT) (SEKm)||188||1,522||33||543||228|
|Number of employees (average for year)||16,286||14,438||13,723||13,479||13,591|
|Number of passengers (m)||25.4||21.4||21.5||22.9||21.7|
|Passenger load factor (%)||71.9||71.6||75.2||74.6||76.0|
|Number of aircraft (at year end)||181||172||159||147||143|
The company has agreed that its financial year will in future be 1 November 31 October, instead of the calendar year; the current financial year runs from 1 November 2012 31 October 2013.
The Scandinavian Airlines fleet includes the following aircraft (as of May 2013)
|Airbus A319-100||4||0||0||141||141||One painted in retro livery|
|Airbus A320-200||7||6||0||0||168||168||Leased until delivery of Airbus A320neo|
|Airbus A320neo||0||30||11||0||0||TBA||TBA||Deliveries from 2016|
|Airbus A330-300||4||34||35||195||264||One painted in Star Alliance livery |
|One painted in Star Alliance livery  Order is ex LAN Chile.|
|Boeing 737-400||1||0||0||150||150||To be phased out and replaced by Boeing 737NGs.|
|Boeing 737-500||5||0||0||120||120||To be phased out and replaced by Boeing 737NGs.|
|Boeing 737-800||26||3||0||0||186||186||One aircraft painted in Star Alliance livery |
|Bombardier CRJ900 NextGen||12||0||0||88||88|
|McDonnell Douglas MD-82||8||0||0||150||150||To be phased out
One painted in Star Alliance livery (pictured on the right)
SAS has earlier stated that they plan to buy up to 55 new narrow-body aircraft to replace its McDonnell Douglas MD-80s and Boeing 737 Classics. But as a revised plan they will replace 9 McDonnell Douglas MD-80s and 11 Boeing 737 Classics with 17 leased Boeing 737 Next Generations. 17 McDonnell Douglas MD-80s will later be replaced by Airbus A320s.
On June 20, 2011, SAS announced an order for 30 new A320 next generation aircraft as part of its fleet harmonisation plan. SAS has earlier announced that the fleet will be harmonized. Its short range aircraft will consist of two types from 2015: Airbus A320 family at the base in Copenhagen and Boeing 737NG at the bases in Stockholm and Oslo. As of May 2013, the McDonnell Douglas MD-80s have been reduced to 6 of which all, are based in Copenhagen. The airline intends to further reduce the number of aircraft down to 5 by July and the last aircraft will be withdrawn from service in late October 2013. There are currently 6 leased A320s in the SAS fleet at the beginning of May 2013
As part of the transition, all the MD80s in Copenhagen will be replaced by leased Airbus A320 and be completed by the end of 2014. The leased A320's, in turn will be replaced by 30 new A320neo's beginning in 2016. Airbus A320 is very attractive in the market and the SAS Group expects to finance the aircraft through a combination of leases and loans.
All the MD80s at the base in Stockholm will be replaced by leased Boeing 737NGs, which will be completed during 2013. Finally all the Boeing 737 Classics at the base in Oslo will be replaced by Boeing 737NGs and this will be completed by the end of 2014.
In September 2007, two separate incidents of similar landing gear failures occurred within four days of each other on SAS Dash 8-Q400 aircraft. A third incident occurred in October 2007. On 28 October 2007, in a move that was described as unique by the Swedish press, the board of directors announced that all 27 Dash 8 Q400 aircraft were to be removed from service due to three landing gear failures.
A press release from SAS said that the company had reached a settlement with Bombardier and Goodrich, whereby the airline would receive SEK one billion as compensation, while SAS would purchase 27 new aircraft, with an option of 24 more. These aircraft will consist of 13 of the CRJ900 Nextgen (10 to SAS and 3 to Estonian Air) and 14 of the updated Q400 Nextgen units (8 to airBaltic and 6 to Widerøe), with 7 additional options.
SAS received the first CRJ-900 on December 3, 2008, with others soon to follow. The CRJ900 fleet now consists of 12 aircraft.
In November 2007, it was revealed that Swedish Civil Aviation Authority began an investigation and accused Scandinavian Airlines System of cutting corners for maintenance. The airline reportedly made 2,300 flights in which safety equipment was not up to standard.
SAS planes look predominantly white, however, they are a very light beige with "Scandinavian" above the windows and "Airlines" below the windows in white lettering except for the belly which is actually white. The vertical stabilizers are blue with the traditional "SAS" logo on it. Also, the engine casing is painted in scarlet with the word Scandinavian in white, the thrust reversers are white.
The following locations are SAS Scandinavian, Stockholm, and Business locations:
In 2006, SAS Sweden launched a new biometric system for use throughout Sweden. Each passenger's fingerprints are, for security purposes, matched to their respective checked baggage. The new technology will be phased in at all the airports served by SAS, although use of the system is voluntary for passengers. The system has been introduced in Norway.
Fly Home Club was SAS's membership club for Scandinavians living in Spain. It has closed ever since economic conditions have worsened in Spain and as Scandinavians living in Spain have decided to return home or change locations.
|Wikinews has related news: Scandinavian Airlines System landing gear failures prompt grounding of Bombardier Q400s|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: SAS Scandinavian Airlines|