United Airlines, the wholly owned subsidiary of
United Continental Holdings Inc.
) introduced a new benefit program- MileagePlus Small Business
Network. The latest initiative is part of United's award-winning
loyalty program - MileagePlus. It is the first travel loyalty
program in U.S. that allows businesses to earn and redeem miles.
All the businesses that join the scheme can win award miles by
purchasing goods and services from the program's vendor partners.
These comprise major providers of printing, shipping, credit card
payment processing, office supplies and computing services,
netting over a dozen.
With the help of the earned miles, businesses can buy travel
awards and upgrades as well as bid for products at the
MileagePlus Headliners auction program. Additionally, the points
can be used to buy merchandise, newspaper and magazine
subscriptions or dining awards. The companies can also purchase,
transfer or award or donate their miles to a MileagePlus charity
Along with this program, United unveiled a new bonus offer.
Through this, companies are entitled to earn 1,000 bonus miles by
signing up to the aforesaid business-loyalty plan and executing
deals that win at least 100 extra miles.
United management holds small businesses that have the potential
to generate high revenues for the airline in high regard.
Considering these as esteemed customers, the airline introduced
the latest MileagePlus program that offers immense value to
businesses of all magnitudes.
We believe that United Continental is poised to benefit from its
industry-leading unit revenue growth, strong operational
execution, competitive cost structure, capacity discipline, and
fleet and network optimization. The company is making continued
progress in expanding its on-board products and services in both
domestic and international fleets.
However, we remain concerned about escalating fuel prices, the
upward movement in non-fuel expenses, competitive threats from
other carriers such as
Delta Air Lines
Southwest Airlines Co.
), fluctuations in passenger and cargo demand, and a sluggish
United Continental - which placed an order with
The Boeing Company
) for 150 brand-new 737 narrow-body airplanes designed with
superior CFM engines - currently holds a Zacks Rank #3, implying
a Hold rating.
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