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Air Canada gains on Dreamliner launch, new brand campaign debut


Air Canada (TSE:AC.B), the nation's largest airline, gained in midday trading after its first Boeing 787 Dreamliner completed its maiden flight on May 18 landing at Toronto's Pearson airport.

The shares were up 0.5 percent to C$8.11 at 2:01 p.m. in Toronto. The Canadian market was closed yesterday for the Victoria Day holiday.

The new aircraft offers greater passenger comfort and enables Air Canada to provide more direct flights to less-populous international destinations,

Air Canada has ordered 37 Dreamliners—at a total cost of $6 billion—and will bring 15 of them into service starting in September. It will take possession of the rest by 2019.

Boeing unveiled the Dreamliner to the public in 2007, and in 2011 Japan's All Nippon Airways became the first airline to fly it.

Air Canada shows off the plane in Toronto today to frequent fliers and media. The carrier’s first Dreamliner is slated for service between Toronto and Tokyo’s Haneda Airport, starting in July.

Over the next two years, a number of Dreamliners experienced mechanical failures, prompting regulators in January 2013 to demand the aircraft be grounded until the issues were addressed.

Boeing made changes to the aircraft’s systems, and this March, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration deemed it safe to fly.

Compared to other aircraft in its class, the Dreamliner features roomier seating, more overhead space and bigger windows, which can be darkened with the touch of a button. 

One of the main reasons Air Canada invested in these aircraft is to be able to offer point-to-point service to mid-size destinations such as Tel Aviv and smaller cities in China and India.

The Dreamliner is crucial for Air Canada, because it offers the long-range yet mid-size seating capacity that is perfect for a market of Canada’s size.

Today also saw the official debut of Air Canada's new brand campaign. 

"Given the evolution of our business strategy, the time is right for us to adopt a more global brand positioning," Craig Landry, Vice President, Marketing at Air Canada, said in a statement today.  "Air Canada successfully competes every day with the best airlines in the world, and we wanted a creative brand platform that would help elevate our brand and reflect our aspirations."

The breaking campaign, by JWT Canada, Air Canada's new AOR appointed in September, connects the evolution of Air Canada's product and service strategy with an ongoing commitment to deliver the world class travel experience today's traveler expects.  It also builds on a key insight from consumers that the richness of their experiences when they travel becomes a part of them and forms a part of who they are.

The work launches a new tagline, "Your world awaits." which serves as an invitation to the Air Canada experience and celebrates the sense of curiosity and pursuit of excellence that the airline shares with today's global traveler.  

Air Canada provides scheduled passenger service directly to 60 Canadian cities, 49 destinations in the United States and 72 cities in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Australia, the Caribbean, Mexico and South America.


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