Air Asia Philippines announced that it officially completed the strategic alliance agreement with Zest Air on May 10, 2013.
|Copyright Photo: Aaron Favila/Associated Press|
Air Asia Philippines is now owned and controlled by a group of five shareholders. 40% is held by Malaysian businessman, Tony Fernandes, while the remaining 60% is split between Filipino owners: Maan Hontiveros, Antonio Cojuangco Jr, Michael Romero, and Alfredo Yao. In addition to heading the Air Asia group of companies, Tony Fernandes is also the host of the Apprentice Asia reality television series on AXN.
With the takeover now officially completely, passengers will start to notice changes as the two entities gradually integrate operations. Air Asia Philippines is eager to access highly valued slots at Manila Airport giving the brand a badly needed presence at the country's primary gateway airport. Due to the inability to obtain slots, Air Asia Philippines has had to operate all of its domestic and regional flights from Clark Airport. The airline is hoping that the new presence at Manila Airport will help to attract feeder traffic into their existing Clark operations.
Tickets for Zest Air flights are now sold through the Air Asia website which gives passengers access to Air Asia's entire network in Southeast Asia. Zest Air just launched new service to Kuala Lumpur, Kota Kinabalu, and Bacolod this month. Saigon, Macau, and Cagayan de Oro will be the next routes to launch.