During his tenure as the Managing Director and CEO of Fiji’s National Airline, Air Pacific Ltd., Dave Pflieger implemented a complete restructuring, re-fleeting, and re-branding of the airline transforming it into a highly successful and profitable carrier renamed “Fiji Airways”. Re-fleeting work included retiring and adding several new aircraft types.
In 2012, Fiji Airways (as Air Pacific) chose a day of national celebration to unveil the visual model of its new aircraft, showcasing the updated designs for the first time on “Fiji Day“, October 10th (the day the country celebrates its independence day). The re-fleeting offered the airline its first-ever opportunity to customize aircraft to its own specifications, which it did by purchasing brand new Airbus A330-200s. The A330 offered significantly better fuel efficiency over the airline’s previous Boeing 747 and Boeing 767s, and the new planes also allowed for a much improved passenger experience with lie-flat business-class seats, in seat power, and new Panasonic in-flight entertainment in both business and economy. Additionally, the aircraft’s payload and range created an opportunity for the airline to fly more weekly flights to new and existing markets in the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, and China.
Fiji Airway’s new aircraft livery featured unique, attention-getting Masi artwork and designs that reflected Fiji’s distinctive island culture and history. According to Mr. Pflieger, the company aimed to develop a brand and look that was “distinctive, unique, and true to Fiji” and he viewed the aircraft re-design as the capstone of its transformation into a revitalized, new, and modern airline. Fiji Airways released the details of its new fleet selection, crew uniforms, airport and lounge designs in 2012 in an effort to ensure maximum visibility for the airline and the country’s tourism-based economy. By 2013, the end result was a highly successful three-year turnaround, re-fleeting, and re-branding that had transformed the airline into an internationally acclaimed, award-winning carrier with record profits.