Tony Fernandes bought AirAsia for one ringgit in 2001 On 2 December 2001 the heavily-indebted airline was bought by former Time Warner executive Tony Fernandes's company Tune Air Sdn Bhd for the token sum of one ringgit (about USD 0.26 at the time) with USD 11 million (MYR 40 million) worth of debts. Fernandes turned the company around, producing a profit in 2002 and launching new routes from its hub in Kuala Lumpur.
Fernandes’s father wanted him to become a doctor Tony Fernandes’s father, who wanted his son to become a doctor, enrolled him at a fancy boarding school associated with the medical profession. Source: The Economist, edition dated March 19, 2009
The airline’s employee-to-aircraft ratio is around 90:1 -- less than half of what any full sevice carrier has At a time when carriers across globe are complaining of high employee cost, this Malaysian carrier can boast of keeping staff cost at bare minimum.
He is one of the first CEOs to sell tickets online Fernandes is one of the first CEOs to harness the power of social media networks to sell tickets and market his airline. Air Asia is considered the first airline in Southeast Asia to introduce e-ticketing system, bypassing traditional travel agents. This saved the airline USD 8 per ticket for issuing physical ticket.
Getting them cheap & young! According to Malaysian media reports, the airline has a strategy of hiring younger and cheaper staff. Tony Fernandes, the airline CEO does not believe in retaining very senior executives with huge salaries.
More flying time! His aircraft are ready to take off within 30-40 minutes of landing. Full service airlines take atleast one hour to resume flight.
Now with fewer ad breaks Without incurring huge advertising spend, the airline has stimulated the Asian market with a slogan- now Everyone Can fly. Customers, who paid steep fares for a seat, now swear by the airline's low fares, punctual flights.
AirAsiaX flies 45 weekly flights out of India AirAsiaX, Fernandes' low cost international airline launched flights to India in 2010.
Fernandes spends a day as a baggage-handler; every two months a day as cabin crew; every three months a day as a check-in clerk AirAsia employs pilots who started out as baggage handlers and stewards; for his part, Mr Fernandes also practises what he preaches. Every month he spends a day as a baggage-handler; every two months, a day as cabin crew; every three months, a day as a check-in clerk. He has even established a “culture department” to “pass the message and hold parties” Source: The Economist, edition dated March 19, 2009