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GE Aviation & HNA learn and grow together

2017-07-12 20:20

BEIJING, July 12, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- The mild breezes and pleasant temperatures that accompany early summer are the perfect backdrop for the celebration of HNA Group's 24th anniversary. Founded on Hainan Island at the southernmost tip of China, HNA Group transformed from a local air transportation company to a Global Fortune 500 company with operations spanning tourism, finance, logistics and ecological technology.

For this key anniversary moment, many partners of HNA Group sent their regards and expressed their support for the group's continued development.

Xiang Weiming, Vice President of GE and President of GE Aviation Greater China stated: "As an important long-term partner of HNA Group, GE provide the most reliable engines as well as comprehensive services solutions and technical support to the HNA Group as part of our commitment to HNA's fleet operation safety and smoothness. We will continue to enhance our cooperation in terms of corporate culture, leadership training and digital development as well to achieve an across-the-board strategic collaboration."

Partnership that dates back 24 years

On the morning of May 2, 1993, the Hainan Airlines' first Boeing 737-300 aircraft took off from Haikou in Hainan province, announcing the call sign "HU" flying all over China and a new airline taking off. On the same day, GE, along with its joint venture CFM International which provides the engines that power the aircraft, began what became a long-term, close-knit cooperation with the airline.

Over the past 24 years, HNA has evolved from a local airline in Hainan Island to a large multinational conglomerate. GE, has been a supportive partner of the group throughout the courses of the rapid development process.

"I visited Hainan Airlines for the first time on Nov.18th,1992 which was my 2nd day after I joined in GE. By that time, HNA was still in the preparation phase for the airline operation. It is a significant achievement that HNA has grown from a small airline with a fleet of only three leased Boeing 737s to a multinational company with diversified businesses," Xiang Weiming commented, "We are very excited to see the growth of HNA over the past 24 years. "

Helping make dreams come true

In the aviation field, GE has always been a large part of HNA's success by providing excellent engine products and support. As of the end of March 2017, HNA Group operates and manages more than 1,250 aircraft (with 740+ as company assets and 550 leased aircraft), of which more than 50% are equipped with engines built by GE or CFM, the 50/50 joint venture between GE and Safran Aircraft Engines. At present, Hainan Airlines, a HNA Group subsidiary, operates 20 Boeing 787 Dreamliners, which is the largest Boeing 787 fleet among all China's airlines. The GEnx, GE's best-selling engine, powers Hainan Airlines' entire 787 fleet.

Learn from each other as mutual mentors and friends

In addition to product collaboration, HNA and GE together take on various different projects. More importantly, by forming a cooperation model, HNA and GE help and learn from each other along the way.

"Over the past 20+ years, GE and HNA have constantly been learning from each other, and we value the partnership with HNA," said Xiang. In July 2016, HNA sent 20 high-level employees to a 12-day leadership training program at the GE learning center in Cincinnati, Ohio. The training focused on leadership, corporate management strategies, financial practices and aviation technologies. The training program played a significant role in improving the employees' level of knowledge base as well as their management and leadership skill set. 

The great partnership between GE and HNA has been best exemplified by the Six Sigma project.

GE was an early adopter of Six Sigma and one of the companies that implemented the program when it was first released back in 1990s. GE was a model to the companies who were targeting the improvement on corporate core competitiveness and economic benefits through Six Sigma. When HNA decided to bring the program in, GE asked Weiming Xiang to take the lead, together with GE Six Sigma trainer launched Six Sigma program in HNA. Over the last decade, GE has assisted HNA in training thousands of its executives, many of whom are now Six Sigma Green Belts and Black Belts.

With the help of GE, HNA launched its own Six Sigma program in 2001 and became one of the first airlines in China to apply such concept. Today, Six Sigma has become part of HNA's corporate culture, improving wide range of areas including work quality and efficiency.

"HNA Group has maintained an excellent corporate culture along with its rapid growth. Employees are encouraged to have open minds on acquiring knowledge and new skillsets. This is indeed all very valuable," said Xiang.

The successful implementation of Six Sigma at HNA brought a great impact on its business management, and has been further promoted to much broader teams in the whole group. In addition to leading-edge business management techniques, HNA's unique development strategy and corporate culture have also become models that have been and continue to be emulated by industry peers and partners.

The Chinese business culture is going abroad

HNA has been and continues to be a dynamic and innovative company in China's civil aviation sector. Through business expansion, HNA goes beyond aviation and has a strong presence in tourism, finance, logistics and eco-technologies.  

Over the company's 24 years of existence, HNA has risen to No. 353 on the Fortune Global 500 list from a small airline, having started out with a tiny fleet consisting of only three aircraft. In 2016, the company posted revenue of more than 600 billion yuan (approx. US$88 billion), providing more than 410,000 jobs.

As Xiang Weiming said, "HNA possesses its unique strategy and powerful leadership, which will lead to their continuous business growth."

In addition to the continuous expansion of the business scope, in this new era characterized by rapid change, HNA is committed to reshaping what it means to be a business-oriented enterprise in the second decade of the 21st century, by creating and building a unique operation and management mechanism.

HNA, by integrating the interests of the greater society, its partners and itself, has created a novel management model emphasizing personnel training has always been an important part of HNA's corporate culture. The group advocates to its employees the need to embrace change and enhance one's skillsets, so that the employees will survive the transformation that is taking place across every industry. Along with that thought, HNA has developed and implemented a unique program for selecting, employing, training, evaluating and retaining talented individuals. The group's various talent training systems are designed to develop human resources based on different needs and goals, opening up a clear development channel for employees. The company has in place a rotation plan for employees with diversified management roles to move across several departments while diversified leadership improvement training programs create an international growth platform for executives and staff.

"As a partner, GE and HNA are all global companies now, and there are more best practices we can share in term how to conduct the business globally, talent & leadership development, corporate govern & compliance policy etc. GE Aviation would like to continue to cooperate with HNA and grow together globally," Xiang added.


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Source: HNA Tourism Group

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