KUALA LUMPUR – AirAsia, which has been operating in Indonesia for more than 10 years, is 49% owned by Malaysia-listed AirAsia Bhd and the remaining stake is held by an Indonesian company that has three individuals as its shareholders.
According to industry officials, they are Pin Harris with 20%, Senjaya Wijaya with 21% and privately held entity PT Fersindo Nusaperkasa with 10%.
The private company is believed to be linked to Riza Chalid, a tycoon said to have close links to Probowo Subianto, who put up a strong challenge against Joko Widodo for the presidency post recently.
The air operator certificate (AOC) is held by Pin Harris, who used to operate AWAIR (Air Wagon International).
AirAsia has stakes of between 40% and 49% in all its operations in the region and India because the regulations do not allow a foreign majority-owned company to hold an aviation operating licence. To circumvent the rule, AirAsia holds a minority stake and its partners in these countries are normally private companies owned by well-known individuals.
Each of the entities is responsible for the operations in their respective countries, but there are some areas which are handled at the AirAsia level. One of them is the procurement of planes.
AirAsia operates in Indonesia under the company PT Indonesia Airasia and the joint venture company is legally a separate entity from the listed AirAsia based in Malaysia. However, it operates under the AirAsia brand name. This is similar to AirAsiaâ€™s set-ups in India, Thailand and the Philippines.
Also, Tan Sri Tony Fernandes is the group chief executive officer and in charge of all operations in the respective countries where AirAsia has a presence.
Indonesia is the biggest market for airlines in the region and also the most competitive. AirAsia, for all its branding, only has a 5% market share in the country, where there are more than 50 airlines operating.
According to AirAsiaâ€™s annual report last year, Indonesia AirAsia carried 34% more passengers compared to 2012, totalling 7.85 million. Last year, it launched a total of 13 new routes â€“ four domestic and nine international.
Amidst the keen competition, Indonesia AirAsia has focused on optimising its network and maximising aircraft utilisation for both domestic and international flights.
There are plans to reinforce the Bandung and Medan hubs with new routes to stimulate demand, as well as to add more flights to cater to existing demand on popular routes.
Just like the Indonesian venture, Thai AirAsia is 45% owned by AirAsia and the rest is held by its partners. In the Philippines, AirAsia has a 39.9% in Philippines AirAsia.
In March last year, Philippines AirAsia formed a strategic alliance with Zest Air, acquiring a 49% stake in the low-cost carrier in a bid to expand in that country.
AirAsia India, which started operations last year, is a joint venture with AirAsia holding a 49% stake, and Tata Group and Telestra Tradeplace taking up the balance.