FlyNiki aims partnership with Emirates

Austrian low-cost carrier FlyNiki is considering a cooperation with Emirates, it has emerged.Asked to comment on reports in the Austrian media that his airline wants to team up with the Dubai-based aviation giant, FlyNiki CEO Niki Lauda said today (Thurs): “I’m open towards all sides and options – including Emirates.”Business newspapers have it that the Austrian carrier, which registered 3.1 million passengers in 2010 and around 2.6 million customers in the previous year, met Emirates bosses for talks. The airlines reportedly plan to offer a ticketing model which would offer passengers a connecting flight operated by FlyNiki if they book up for a trip with Emirates.Otmar Lenz, a spokesman for FlyNiki, confirmed that the Vienna-based aviation firm was considering reaching a deal involving connection flights. Lenz called a possible partnership in which flights will be handled under a joint code-sharing agreement as a “possible second stage we are not thinking about yet”.Lenz explained that no decision has yet been made over whether FlyNiki, which was founded in 2003, will change its flight schedule to make such a cooperation with Emirates possible. Reports have it that such a partnership could start as soon as this summer.FlyNiki’s achieved an annual turnover of 430 million Euros last year after it generated 340 million Euros in 2009. The airline closely cooperates with Germany’s Air Berlin. The Berlin-based aviation company holds a 49.9 per cent stake in FlyNiki.Emirates started operating in 1985. It is one of the fastest-growing airlines in the world. It made headlines by ordering 90 new A380 Airbus planes last year.