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Chairman Sir Michael Bishop
"We have been preparing a significant sales and marketing exercise"
 real 28k

Thursday, 1 February, 2001, 12:31 GMT
British Midland rebranded
New bmi plane
The new look "bmi" planes aim to attract younger travellers.
The second largest airline in the UK has changed its brand to "bmi british midland", all in lower case. The carrier's official name will be British Midland International.

Sir Michael Bishop
Chairman Sir Michael Bishop's new planes will fly to America
The name change will be accompanied by a new livery. The firm's new Airbus A330 planes will be white with a royal blue roof and splashes of red on the wings and engines.

Its light blue "bmi" logo will have the words "british midland" spelt out in white above the initials.

On the plane's royal blue tail the "bmi" logo will be printed in white.

Its old logo, with the letters "BM" in red on a blue background with the company name British Midland spelled out in white below, will be consigned to the history books.

The launch of the new look was somewhat spoilt, when a week ago a French plane spotter photographed a plane with the new design and posted the picture on the internet.

Younger image

The corporate makeover aims to win over younger travellers, who are being wooed by the airline's new competitors like EasyJet, Go and Buzz.

The old logo
The old logo
And the airline's entry into the "new economy" will be matched by a new class of travel called just that; on the airline's new trans-Atlantic routes passengers will be offered the choice between "business", "new economy" and "economy" class travel.

The re-branding marks the airline's return to the long haul flights market which it left 18 years ago.

Its first flights to the US will take off from Manchester airport in April.

The company wants to fly out of Heathrow airport too, but a UK-US aviation agreement restricts to four the number of UK and American airlines allowed to fly between Heathrow and the US.

Domain issues

British Midland's new brand will no doubt increase the traffic to the websites www.bmi.com and www.bmi.co.uk.

One is a music website which on Thursday displayed an appealing photograph of the musician Paul Simon on its home page, the other a removals firm called Britannia which proudly displays the Union Jack as part of its logo.

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See also:

13 Sep 00 | Business
British Midland goes transatlantic
23 Feb 00 | Business
British Midland stretches wings
09 Nov 99 | The Company File
Lufthansa buys stake in British Midland
20 Oct 99 | The Company File
Anger at airline sale
31 Jan 01 | Business
British Midland: Aiming for the US
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