View Full Version : SAS pilots on brief strike to attend union meeting

30th Aug 2004, 08:47
SAS pilots on brief strike to attend union meeting today in CPH!

Finally someone in the industry puts their foot down and say enough is enough! A deal is a deal, and should be kept by both parties...
Well done!
I really hope they will ride the storm out & end up with a reasonable outcome!

I take my hat off in full support!

Good luck guys!

Ps I look fwd to hear from more initiated sources on the topic!

30th Aug 2004, 08:52
What is all about ?

Hotel Charlie
30th Aug 2004, 11:17

If there were a ligitamate reason for the strike I would agree with you but since the objektive is to scre... a body of pilots in Norway I think it is pathetic. If Lufthansa were to buy SAS one day would the SK pilots want the same treatment imposed on them as they want on the Braathens guys? I think NOT!

30th Aug 2004, 12:15
So what is the reason behind the strike? Thanks in advance :)

Norwegian wood
30th Aug 2004, 12:34
It was not a strike, just a union meeting on very short notice,allowed according to danish law...

30th Aug 2004, 13:26

You´re funny:p

SAS pilots just don´t want to pay the price of your free meal anymore.

And by now, the bosses are starting to smell the coffee.

About time!

Hotel Charlie
30th Aug 2004, 13:52
SAS pilots just don´t want to pay the price of your free meal anymore.
Ok Einstein have you looked at the books lately. I guess I´ve been paying for your meal for the last year and a half or so.
Get a grip man. The problem I have now is that you all will be dragging me into the mud aswell.

30th Aug 2004, 15:01
No need to get personal HC, that´s a bad sign.

And WHY has BU done fine for the last year and a half, since you 2 years ago was on the verge of bankrupcy? Seems everybody except the BU guys know the answer to that question!

Look, SAS pilots just want a fair for all deal. So far we´ve been scre*ed, and that´s gotta stop. And it will!!

Whatever would happen if LH bought SAS I have no idea. Maybe some Malmø Aviation guys would have an idea what could happen, but that´s not the deal SAS pilots are looking for.

Suggest you tell us what you BU pilots want from this deal!!

Suggest you get a grip man.

rgds Timilu.

30th Aug 2004, 15:41
It is hard to believe that you could have 9 posts on an item and the whole thing be incomprehensible to an outsider.

I appreciate that English is the second language to some of the posters but why not answer post no. 2 from Dusk2Dawn?


Norwegian wood
30th Aug 2004, 19:52
Merger of two airlines... seniority lists ....same sad old story you have heard before in the airline industry :{

31st Aug 2004, 12:52

If LH bought SK, as a LH pilot I would presume that a deal that was signed between the union and the company would be respected! That is what I mean. In this case it is a seniority issue, but it could be anything. When the company cross the line and break a deal, it is about time it is acted upon. If SAS is not happy about the deal they should not have signed it, not so long ago....
Also, one should remember that a lot of SAS guys lost their jobs when Braathens was aquired. Braathens were mere months away from bankruptcy, so it is understandable that the SK union would want something in return for SK axing their own pilots to the benifit of the BU ones.

I am in no way opposing the BU pilots right to some seniority with this post but I am appreciating that something is done when the company is no longer standing by the signed deals...



Hotel Charlie
31st Aug 2004, 15:34

Do you really believe that SAS bought Braathens to be nice? You know as well as I do that if SAS hadn´t bought Braathens somebody else would have. If that had happened SAS would have been in even more trouble. There were actually two other scenerios if SAS hadn´t done their smartest deal in a long time.
Braathens was much more efficient the SAS was at the time. Our "turnaround" had actually begone three years earlier. SAS beeing a lot larger than Braathens and partly owned buy three separate governments, had a bigger bag of cash to use than the Braathens family had. Ergo they (the family) decided to sell out! By the first year owned by SAS, Braathens made a larger profitt than the buying price was!! In other words we´ve actually been sponsoring the SAS guys sallary for quite a while. They themselfs have yet to make money! When it comes to seniority the Norwegian law is quite clear! Equall rights! The SAS guys don´t want that . They want to impose penalties because they have done this to others before! A wrong thing doesn´t become right just because you keep on repeting it, does it?

31st Aug 2004, 15:43
Why is it when a company is about to go bust, and it is bought by another, the pilots that would otherwise be out of a job, get special treatment?
Would logic not dictate that if you loose your job, you apply for a new one in the surviving one. In this case SAS. Maybe one day LH.
Thereby ending on the bottom of the new list. LIFO principle! Beats being unemployed!

Why is it fair that some young bloke, at the bottom of the SAS list should have a bunch of BU guy in front of him. If the BU guy liked SAS so much, wouldnt he have applied there earlier.

Its a dog eat dog business. Will someone explain what happened in Malmo Aviation.

Heja Norge:uhoh:

Hotel Charlie
31st Aug 2004, 16:02

First of all Braathens wasn´t bankrupt! Secondly someone other than SAS would have bought it and I´d still have a job.
When it comes to seniority, you may not like it but it´s the law!
What is so hard to understand?
When it comes to Malmø Aviation there was never a merger. If there had been we would have had to follow the law!

31st Aug 2004, 19:00
More or less the same thing happened at Malmø as with Busy Bee and Transwede (was it Transwede?). The BU boys had no qualms about scr**w*ng them. Now they´re upset ´cause they´re getting the short end.

31st Aug 2004, 20:20
First of all Braathens wasn´t bankrupt!

Yes, and my four year old son believes in Santa Claus.

Secondly someone other than SAS would have bought it and I´d still have a job.

How naïve gan you get, HC? Do you really think that any buyer of BU (other than SAS :rolleyes: ) would have kept all the BU pilots, and letting them maintain their old collective agreements without major consessions? No way! Your asses would have been whipped severely. SAS did not buy BU to be nice, and neither would any other buyer. They would have squeezed the lemon to the maximum, and you would have accepted it to keep as many jobs as you could. The only difference is that SAS wanted to use you in the inside competition in SAS group.

You might have been able to save your ass if someone other than SAS had bought BU, but at what price? The fact is that nobody wanted to buy Braathens. (In hindsight, there might have been one buyer, though, namely Bjørn Kjos and his Norwegian Air shuttle. Wouldnt that have been ironic... :) )

When it comes to seniority, you may not like it but it´s the law!

Try to catch a glimpse of the real world, HC: The law regulates the seniority with regard to layoffs. Nothing else.

There were actually two other scenerios if SAS hadn´t done their smartest deal in a long time.

Even the CEO of SAS has admitted that buying BU was the biggest [email protected] he has made. SAS should have let BU die, and concentrated on the competition outside the SAS Group, and not within. And we will have to live with the consequences of this [email protected] for many years to come.

Just a little hint: Try to remember which company bought which the next time you reply.

Capt. Haddock
31st Aug 2004, 20:36
Negotiation experts always advise to seek win-win solutions – easy to say but not easy to do with airline mergers. Nevertheless it is important to try because one will probably have to work together in the future. The question if one party should be grateful and give up more than the other is difficult, especially if the parties are somewhat equal. In the SAS-BU (Braathens) case the fact remains that SAS bought Braathens.

There are always two sides to a story and the BU pilots claims that their part of the operation was not the cause of BU’s financial trouble and that SAS should appreciate that they were allowed to buy BU. The BU staff trusted SAS’ promises and did not exercise their possibilities to oppose the takeover.

In June 2004, SAS CEO Joergen Lindegaard expressed that it was no secret that BU is a more efficient company. The BU management had over invested in Malmø Aviation and lost lots of money which brought BU into a financial catastrophe. The BU operation and production have always been more cost efficient than SAS. So when we took over and removed what they owed, they paid for themselves in one year. We paid 850 mio. for them which they made as a profit in one year. The purchase of BU was the best corporate deal I have ever made. Said Lindegaard and continued to explain that if we would not have taken over Braathens, how much help would a competitor – such as Norwegian – have gotten in the Norwegian market. That would have been my worst nightmare – that they could get a 50-60% market share.

The SAS pilots are upset, and rightfully so, because they have laid off a lot of pilots while BU have not. The question right now is how to merge the pilots together in a fair way.
When push comes to shove it is always a question about who has the most leverage.
With more than 2000 SAS pilots and less than 400 BU pilots it will be interesting to see if SAS CEO Lindegaard and SAS Corporate management will dare, or can afford to risk a labor conflict with the SAS pilots.

31st Aug 2004, 21:05
Capt Haddock,

Nicely balanced mail.

The BU fellow,

Typical aggressive nationalistic norweigan. Do you really think BU was a financially strong company bullied by the bad bad SAS. I think you should be greateful that you have a job. I know plenty who doesnt, so that you may!

Hotel Charlie
31st Aug 2004, 22:18
SK111 and Payscale,

Read Capt. Haddocks reply a couple of more times or maybe have someone help you read it and you might just figure it out! :ok:

1st Sep 2004, 07:34

Quote: "...or maybe have someone help you read it ..."

If this is Your highest level of discussion You will not get far, - or meet just a small amount of understanding.

And, - just for Your info, - Norwegian law is no good in Sweden or Denmark, - and remember You are negotiating with a lot of swedes and danes.

About time for You to see a good deal when it is just in front of Your nose.


Hotel Charlie
1st Sep 2004, 08:02

The plan has never been, from either the BU pilots or SAS Management that the BU pilots were to merge into the SAS pilots lists. There is a new company starting up in Norway called SAS Braathens! It will consist of the former employees of Scandinavian Airlines Norway and Braathens (both companies will be shot down). I know you oppose this but that is what the owners have decided weather You or I like it or not. Therefore equall rights in that new company. I do not claim anything from your old lists at all!

1st Sep 2004, 10:52
¨Shot down¨, you got that right!

HC, you´ll have loads of fun flying with the ex-BB, but now SK guys when the time comes.

1st Sep 2004, 12:44
Please, also bear in mind, that

1. After the takeover by the SAS, BU was allocated almost all the most profitable routes (ex-SAS) in Norway while the SAS pilot redundancy got worse and the SAS resources (and earning potential) were directed to more competitive routes.

2. BU operations were obviosly heavily sponsored by the SAS mother organization (internal invoicing/lack of same) during a lengthy period of time.

3. After the latest adjustements in the SAS flightdeck collective agreement (03 + 04) the SAS f/d is actually more productive now. This is a fact, ladies and gentlemen!

I wonder, which other potential buyer could have contributed to the "profitability" of BU in the same scale (see 1 + 2 above).

I hope that HC will be just as disciplined a company soldier, buying all the management indoctrination, also when the winds one day will turn an he'll be on the line.




Hotel Charlie
1st Sep 2004, 14:09

"Shot down" was mayby a little harsh, but never the less they will be closed down.


Both your points 1 and 2 especially number 2 are nothing but rumours made up by the SK pilots unions. You know that.

When it comes to number three you are right! If this had been done when Braathens did it you would of coarse have had a lot more pilots beeing redundent but then again the company would have been in a lot better shape!

Lets start working together so that managment can´t play us against each other. But either way the company needs to make money otherwise senioritylists will be the least of our worries!:sad:

Capt. Haddock
1st Sep 2004, 15:31
Payscale use the term “Its a dog eat dog business” and that is certainly the case here. The Braathens staff were probably too naive for today’s tough business climate. They believed in the promises of job security given by SAS Corporate management. The number of Braathens employees were cut from about 4500 to 1900.
This was supposed to cut costs and many asked why the general operating costs that SAS charged Braathens increased by about 38% (1stQ2002 - 737 mio / 1stQ2003 - 1013 mio)

What is interesting with this merger is to see how disciplined most of the pilots have been in both camps. Most of the SAS & BU pilots seem to wisely avoid the use of unfriendly language. This has not been the case during most previous mergers, where hostile language caused unintentional pain and conflicts far beyond each individual’s goal. It will be very interesting to see how this will evolve. Will it be left to the elected union representatives who have the actual facts or can we bring out the popcorn and watch aggressive discussion based on a mix of unconfirmed facts and rumours here on PPRuNe?

1st Sep 2004, 16:10

As far as I am informed, it is not a question of a new company with former SAS and former BU pilots. The SAS guyes are employed by the SAS Group, HQ placed in sweden. And so are you.

You will want a good position on the SAS Group seniority list. If indeed the SAS groups was spilt and you were fighting for a position on the norweigan list it would be an entirely norweigan afffair. However the SAS pilots will still remain SAS pilots.

Hotel Charlie
1st Sep 2004, 17:39

I guess we´re not on the same page then. SAS Braathens is a new company with it´s own AOC and HQ in Oslo! It will consist of former Scandinavian Airlines Norway and Braathens employees. It will get 26 737´s from SAS and 26 737´s from Braathens.

Why would you loose any seniority? If the plan was that we were to be on the same list (kombilisten) I don´t see you loosing any seniority anyway. Nobody is going to take any years away from you. You would be on a longer list with a few more people ahead of you and even more guys behind you. You´d probably make capt. faster then you will on the list you are today. But since we´re not going to be on the same list: not to worry!

1st Sep 2004, 22:33
Capt H.

Just quick correction regarding your previous post:

BU did not "overinvest" in MalmöAviation.

MalmöAviation was making a good profit (some 200.000.000 skr) which was an upward trend dating back some years.
ONE(!!!) year after the BU takeover it was loosing almost 150 million!!! They turned a great company into a disaster in one single year with many idiotic internal changes, disregarding the Malmöaviation-expertise on their own market. (eg. implementing the best & back concept and many, many other changes)

That is NOT what brought on the disastrous economic situation BU found themselves in.
BU could not in the end stand the competition on the norwegian domestic market. Of course, later on when they started flying without the SK competition, they made money... ANYONE would do that ANYWERE without competition! It's called monopolizing the market! Easy peacy!

Contemplating what is fair in a situation such as this, one must consider who has lost out in the previous situation.
In this case MANY SK pilots were sacrificed when SAS aquired BU, and SAVED BU pilots from loosing their jobs. Therefore logic implies that the SK pilots should AT LEAST not get stuck with the shorter straw AGAIN!!!???

Kind rgds


2nd Sep 2004, 06:31
KADS, You are absolutely right.
HC should read Your post, - a few times may be, - or have someone read it loud to him.


Capt. Haddock
2nd Sep 2004, 06:31
Interesting and good point KADS - Malmoe Aviation was a victim of Braathens corporate strategy.

Media and financial analytics have explained how Braathens “over invested” in Malmoe aviation. This does not proof that it was the employees fault or that Malmoe aviation could not have survived with a better strategy. It merely states that Braathens paid too much in 1998. The price was 600 mio. A large portion of this was goodwill which had to be written off.

SAS demanded that Malmoe Aviation should be sold before SAS would take over Braathens. The Braathens-familiy would have to buy Malmoe aviation for 1 krone if they where unable to sell it. This involved guarantees of all Malmoe Aviation’s obligations and finical commitments of 1,4 billion.

Hotel Charlie
2nd Sep 2004, 07:23
Bad-Man and KADS,

What on earth does this have to do with the merger of SK Norway pilots and Braathens pilots?

But since you brought it up.
Yes BU managments actions in the swedish market were a disaster. Although you need to bring all the facts to the table dude! Most of these losses were dew to something called Transwede. A company that in all it´s history had never made a profitt on it´s domestic operations. It should never have been bought and mixed into Malmø Aviation. But all this belongs to an other thred KADS. Start one about it if you want!

Capt. Haddock
2nd Sep 2004, 08:37
Easy HC, don’t forget who started this thread in the first place…

All the Norwegian carriers were loosing money at the time and the question was who could “out-bleed” the other. The Braathens family made a responsible decision, maybe not the best thing for themselves. Another approach would have been to remove the assets and run the company into bankruptcy and avoid all commitments.

Braathens had cash equity of 559 mio. at the time plus the aircrafts they owned along with other assets. Additional loans could have extended this even further. Many airlines have been running for years on loans. This allowed the option of a long battle against SAS.

I think that both Braathens and SAS pilots benefited from the merger. A long battle would most likely have left a winning but broke and vulnerable SAS. The coordination of route structures benefited both companies since no one could make money with all the parallel half empty flights at the time.

2nd Sep 2004, 13:00
Capt H -

You are well informed but I would like to add some info to that which you informed us of:

Yes, Braathens paid a good deal of money but it was an act of desperation, brought on by it's bigger brother. At the time, global alliances were quickly forming and KLM and Braathens were working very closely. When BU aquired MalmöAviation (TF), SAS was only two days away from buying TF. The whole deal was just about to be signed when KLM got a hold of the news and urged BU to quickly purchase TF ahead of SAS.

Secondly, SAS did not demand that MalmöAviation was to be released before SAS aquired BU, but rather the swedish competition laws did not allow SK to own TF, as it would give SK a monopoly on the swedish domestic market, ie. it was a prerequisite for the SK takeover of BU.

This was not valid however at the earlier state, when SK was interested in TF because at that point Transwede was still operating independentely and had some of the swedish domestic market share, albeit a small part...

As you all can see it is a quite complicated and intriguing history that brought us to where we all are now.

And as for HC asking me to keep to my own topic, I can inform you that as for the relevancy to that topic I can reveal this:

When BU aquired MalmöAviation and later (with great incompetancy!!!) merged Transwede and MalmoAviation in to one single entity, then called "Braathens MalmöAviation" (very imaginative! :rolleyes: ) there were talks held between the TF and BU unions on how to eventually merge seniority lists and work on a single union deal.
At that point in time, the TF pilots were approached as being 2nd class pilots by BU union, and the BU union constantly reminded TF pilots of "who it was who aquired who". In the end no such deal was ever struck due to the "arrogancy" of the BU union.

For some reason the BU pilots now seems to have forgotten their own attitude towards the smaller company at that time and now calls for equal rights on all points!

One should remember one's history....

HC - I hope this ties my posts back to the original topic enough to please you.



Capt. Haddock
2nd Sep 2004, 13:46
Yes KADS it is funny how the cards can change ….. it is best to play fair, the past may hunt you down. One day an airline is eating another only to be taken over by an even bigger at a later point in time. Will it stop here or could the entire SAS eventually be swallowed by someone else?

2nd Sep 2004, 17:40
I'm sure it can... :D

Hotel Charlie
3rd Sep 2004, 07:36

I guess were back on track :ok:

I am aware that there was brief talk between the unions about a semi merger of the pilots, but this was only loose talk and managment never had any intention of merging the companies.
Som of the BU pilots looked at how SAS merged with Linjeflyg and thought it might be a way of doing it, but just as many said NO WAY. That type of "warm welcome" to furure colleagues hadn´t worked and wouldn´t! Norwegian law would have prevented it anyways and nothing became of it!

Why KADS would you want to make that same mistake again? You know as well as I that there is still a lot of bitternes amongst ex-LIN guys 12 years later. Maybe you should look at doing something about their situation instead of making the same mistake again. Doing a wrong thing twice does not make it right! Then again we´re not going to be on that list since we´ll be working for a new company called SAS Braathens and you shouldn´t have to worry about us :ok:

3rd Sep 2004, 15:06
HC -

Just to clarify:

By your post it seems that you think that I either work for and/or am in a position to be able to make a difference in the negotiations going on.

I do not work for SAS but am an observing by-stander...

4th Sep 2004, 17:15

BU was virtually bankrupt when SAS had to buy the company. They have done nothing for for the group so far, other than cost us money. In addition our youngest pilots lost their jobs, partially because BU was bought. Not fair.

We want a fair merging of lists. With our laid off collegeaues in mind!!!

Nothing less.



Hotel Charlie
4th Sep 2004, 18:18

Which planet was it you just walked of from?

4th Sep 2004, 20:31
HC -

Your posts are, as usual, to the point and with a very intellectual argumentative foundation.
I just wish I could be a collegue of yours...


5th Sep 2004, 15:51
Hello HC

This might seem as a personally attack on some of the BU-pilots, belive me it's not meant to bee, but I just have to ask.....

How many of the pilots presently employed in BU .... (soon to become SAS, or SAS/BU call it whatever you want)..... have a letter from the SAS-pilot recruitment, which states: "you have failed the selection process, and are not able to apply again".... Well some time ago SAS-manegment meant that some of you were not allowed to sit as acting pilot on an SAS-aeroplane, now suddenly that must have changed......I wonder if there have been a change to the new AOC on the pilot-profile in this new company?????

Belive me I know that you are just as good a pilot as I am..... (former SAS!)......

Best of luck with the merger....it will probably be nasty!

Hotel Charlie
5th Sep 2004, 18:54

I do know SAS and Braathens had different hireing criteria. While Braathens only hired pilots with a lot of experience either from the RNAF or civilians with usually at least 10 years experience, SAS would often hire people right out of flightschool. Braathens had the luxuary of beeing able to get thorough background info by talking to former employers whilst SAS would have to do something else to check out candidates. Psycho-tests are then an option. I guess SAS decided on a certain profile they wanted that would fit three different cultures.
How many of the BU-pilots that have not passed I really don´t know. I do know quite a few who have passed but for different reasons don´t work for SK. I know a lot who never applied. I even know that some left SK to come work for BU instead.
When it comes to SAS Braathens it is a new company based on a BU AOC. I don´t think there will be a problem with the pilot-profile. I think we´ll do fine (both SK and BU pilots are profesionalls) and its going to be a great company once the dust settles.

8th Sep 2004, 08:43
Hm... don't think an AOC says anything about pilot profiles but...
Recruitment policies and requirements alsways depend on the availability of flight crew. Few applicants = "lower" standards and vice versa. SAS happily (well, management, anyways) swallowed LIN pilots without any selection process, even though some, if not most, had been rejected a few years earlier. If I remember correctly, the SAS OM was changed in order to accomodate the hiring of LIN pilots, and then changed back to the "original" hiring requirements once they were in... Dunno if the SAS incident/accident rate went up dramatically thereafter. Probably didn't...