Is Smisek influencing the new AA?

Old Apr 19, 15, 9:37 am
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Is Smisek influencing the new AA?

[note - post is sarcasm]

The other night, I had the absolute pleasure to fly aboard AA's new A321T from JFK to SFO in Flagship First.

The plane and crew were lovely -- as was most of the catering. However... it seems that UA and Smisek have rubbed off on the new AA.

Upon being served the prerequisite warm nuts, I noticed that they were all broken into pieces. I inquired to the FA and she told me this was normal.

Dismayed, I then decided to open the menu to peruse additional beverage options. To my absolute horror, I noticed the coffee.



FreshBrew?! On this most vaunted and premium of carriers?

FT led to believe that this airline was the absolute zenith of perfection.

I'm shocked, appalled, and disappointed.

And I blame Smisek.
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Old Apr 19, 15, 9:47 am
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LOL thanks for starting my day with a laugh - it will be a long one on the way to Narita... I think that Freshbrew Group is hoping they can brand themselves as a premium coffee like Starbucks - at least that's how they are selling themselves to US airlines.

Unfortunately - we know better don't we....
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Old Apr 19, 15, 10:18 am
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The Parkerization of AA has begun unfortunately...yet at least they backtracked fairly (measured in months, vs. years for UA) quickly from some of the catering cuts.

Not sure if Horton has a non-compete, but I'd love for him to run UA.
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Old Apr 19, 15, 10:37 am
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Is Smisek influencing the new AA?

Is there a reason why just because AA uses the same coffee brand that UA does, it's one CEO influencing another? Or why every decision UA makes seems to be suggested in this forum as being directly a result of the CEO decision?

First of all, both UA and AA have their own catering departments that likely make these kind of decisions based on their budget and other factors (quality, minimum standards they'll accept, etc.). If anything, the in charge in the catering area might inform the CEO of their decision, but doubt they even help to make it. The budget they are approved for certainly would have an impact on the final decision based on $ they have to allocate to coffee. But I wouldn't really call that "influence", much less from one in the industry to another.

And sure, one airline may check out what the competition is offering, and when preping their bid, a potential supplier might use the fact they supply another airline as a selling point. But hardly a case of Smeisk "influencing" AAs decision on coffee.

Lots of competitors in various industries use the same supplier, but I don't think Honda would be considered influencing Toyota's decision to select the same airbag manufacturer (or vice-versa). IMO, much more likely to be something like Freshbrew focusing more of their marketing efforts on providing coffee to air carriers then they have been in the past, for example.

Should I now suggest, following your lead, that Smeisk also influenced AA to change the base of their aircraft exterior to white from the silver they have used for about ever prior to their merger. After all, UA did that first, too.
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Old Apr 19, 15, 10:42 am
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Originally Posted by emcampbe View Post
Is there a reason why just because AA uses the same coffee brand that UA does, it's one CEO influencing another? Or why every decision UA makes seems to be suggested in this forum as being directly a result of the CEO decision?

First of all, both UA and AA have their own catering departments that likely make these kind of decisions based on their budget and other factors (quality, minimum standards they'll accept, etc.). If anything, the in charge in the catering area might inform the CEO of their decision, but doubt they even help to make it. The budget they are approved for certainly would have an impact on the final decision based on $ they have to allocate to coffee. But I wouldn't really call that "influence", much less from one in the industry to another.

And sure, one airline may check out what the competition is offering, and when preping their bid, a potential supplier might use the fact they supply another airline as a selling point. But hardly a case of Smeisk "influencing" AAs decision on coffee.

Lots of competitors in various industries use the same supplier, but I don't think Honda would be considered influencing Toyota's decision to select the same airbag manufacturer (or vice-versa). IMO, much more likely to be something like Freshbrew focusing more of their marketing efforts on providing coffee to air carriers then they have been in the past, for example.

Should I now suggest, following your lead, that Smeisk also influenced AA to change the base of their aircraft exterior to white from the silver they have used for about ever prior to their merger. After all, UA did that first, too.
Guess you missed the very first line of the post.
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Old Apr 19, 15, 10:48 am
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Originally Posted by emcampbe View Post
Is there a reason why just because AA uses the same coffee brand that UA does, it's one CEO influencing another? Or why every decision UA makes seems to be suggested in this forum as being directly a result of the CEO decision?

First of all, both UA and AA have their own catering departments that likely make these kind of decisions based on their budget and other factors (quality, minimum standards they'll accept, etc.). If anything, the in charge in the catering area might inform the CEO of their decision, but doubt they even help to make it. The budget they are approved for certainly would have an impact on the final decision based on $ they have to allocate to coffee. But I wouldn't really call that "influence", much less from one in the industry to another.

And sure, one airline may check out what the competition is offering, and when preping their bid, a potential supplier might use the fact they supply another airline as a selling point. But hardly a case of Smeisk "influencing" AAs decision on coffee.

Lots of competitors in various industries use the same supplier, but I don't think Honda would be considered influencing Toyota's decision to select the same airbag manufacturer (or vice-versa). IMO, much more likely to be something like Freshbrew focusing more of their marketing efforts on providing coffee to air carriers then they have been in the past, for example.

Should I now suggest, following your lead, that Smeisk also influenced AA to change the base of their aircraft exterior to white from the silver they have used for about ever prior to their merger. After all, UA did that first, too.
Good god man - it was a joke!
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Old Apr 19, 15, 10:59 am
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Originally Posted by Baze View Post
Guess you missed the very first line of the post.
No kidding.

Almost two years ago, Parker's down-market US Airways adopted FreshPoo coffee in a clear case of follow-the-leader, after the UA/CO combo had adopted the lousy coffee. And rather than dump FreshPoo and adopt a real premium coffee for the transcons, Parker's team figured "good enough for UA - then good enough for AA."

Rumous are swirling that Hamm's, Milwaukee's Best, Schlitz and Stroh's will soon be the beer selection offered on AA.
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Old Apr 19, 15, 1:20 pm
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Originally Posted by FWAAA View Post
No kidding.

Almost two years ago, Parker's down-market US Airways adopted FreshPoo coffee in a clear case of follow-the-leader, after the UA/CO combo had adopted the lousy coffee. And rather than dump FreshPoo and adopt a real premium coffee for the transcons, Parker's team figured "good enough for UA - then good enough for AA."

Rumous are swirling that Hamm's, Milwaukee's Best, Schlitz and Stroh's will soon be the beer selection offered on AA.
In fairness to Parker (who, we are told, no longer actively endangers the life of his fellow human beings by driving whilst intoxicated), AA moved from one poor-quality coffee to another. What was so irksome about Smisek's move is that United actually had a fair claim to being one of the few airlines serving somewhat decent coffee.
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Old Apr 19, 15, 1:24 pm
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As happens with sarcasm, even labeled, it can be misunderstood.

Additionally as this has no content for the UA FF, best to close.

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