Ana Group's History TURNING POINT ~Our Journey into the Skies~

ANA has been providing air transport services since 1952, with safety being our number one priority.
In 2012, we celebrated our 60th anniversary, and today we have become a world class airline that flies more than 50 million passengers a year.
We are expanding our business into other airline related areas, including tourism, trade and more.
At the foundation of our growth is our company’s DNA, the guiding principles of diligence and taking on new challenges.
The Turning Points in ANA’s history illustrate those challenges and achievements.
Follow with us on our journey of taking flight into the skies...

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A Big Dream Born from Two Helicopters

At the end of World War II, all private companies in Japan were banned from operating any aircraft under the command of Allied Powers. Two years after the ban was lifted, Japan Helicopter Transport (ANA’s predecessor) became the first privately run air transport company in Japan in 1952, starting with just two helicopters.

Our founding philosophy was to have integrity and independence. With that independent spirit, the employees dreamed big. Ten years later in 1962, we became the launch customer for the YS-11, the first postwar, domestically made passenger aircraft.

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Operation of Regular International Flights

An industry policy in 1972 regulated domestic airline companies, where ANA was only allowed to operate domestic flights, but were restricted from international flights.

In 1971, we operated an international charter flight to Hong Kong. The following year, we flew another international charter flight to Shanghai, after diplomatic relations with China normalized. Finally in 1985, the restrictive policy was repealed.

A year later in 1986, ANA achieved our dream that spanned 10 years - the historic beginning of regular international flight operations between Tokyo’s Narita Airport and Guam.

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March 3, 1986. ANA’s first regular international flight to Guam takes off.


Star Alliance Dramatically Improves International Competitiveness

ANA was the ninth member to join Star Alliance in 1999, the world’s first and largest global airline alliance. This helped accelerate the growth of our international airline business.

We also improved our services for our customers through the mileage program alliance, and expanded our services after adopting services shared by other member companies.

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Overcoming Adversity and Achieving Profitability

While ANA’s international business grew rapidly since 2000, we encountered new challenges. Due to the 9/11 terrorist attacks in the US in 2001, the Iraq War in 2003, and the spread of the SARS virus, international flight customers in 2004 decreased 12.8% from the previous year.

By implementing emergency cost reductions, we achieved profitability in 2005. As we use our collective strengths to overcome adversity, including the global recession and the spread of the super-flu, we have constantly worked to grow as a company when faced with any challenges.

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Leading Advancements in Environmental Sustainability

Heavy CO2 emissions by our airline business highly impacts the environment, so we’ve implemented sustainable practices - using alternative energy, reducing the use of natural resources, recycling, and undertaking conservation programs to protect biodiversity.

In 2008, we became the first company in the airline and transport industry recognized by Japan’s Ministry of the Environment to be certified as an Eco First Company.*

Through communicating with our stakeholders, we are continuing our progress towards becoming a more sustainable company.

*Eco-First Company: To promote environmental protection in various industries, leading companies pledge to work on environmental protection programs to the Ministry of the Environment.

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Flying across the Pacific Ocean in an aircraft using biofuel in 2012.


Enhanced Global Presence with New Boeing 787 Dreamliners

We supported development of state-of-the-art Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft as the launch customer in 2004, and began operations in 2011 for an enhanced global presence.

By January 2016, we became the first company in the world to fly over 100,000 flights, equivalent to one quarter of all B787 flights worldwide.

Next-generation B787’s technologies and materials vastly reduced costs, their exceptional fuel efficiency made long range flights by medium sized aircrafts possible, and are helping to expand our international network.

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Children from disaster-stricken Sendai and Fukushima invited on board the Boeing 787 Flight for Recovery in October, 2011.


Change to Holding Company Corporate Structure

ANA Holdings Company was founded in 2013 to stay competitive in the changing airline industry, due to the expansion of Tokyo’s airport capacity, deregulation of the airline business and the increasing low cost carrier (LCC) presence.

We have implemented ANA Group’s multi-brand strategy of our original ANA brand with our LCC brand, Vanilla Air, in order to be the preferred airline by all our customers.

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Achievements in Becoming a World-Leading Airline Group

We are proud of all of our achievements:

Made all Business Class seats into aisle seats with the “ANA Business Staggered” layout, the first Japanese airline to offer this configuration.

Received the highest 5-Star Ranking four straight years (2013-2016) by SKYTRAX, among other industry awards.

Became the number one Japanese airline in 2016 in international flight sales, available seat-kilometers, and revenue passenger-kilometers using our Dual Hub Network of Haneda and Narita Airports.

Celebrated our 30th anniversary as an international airline in March 2016. As we look to the future, our goal is to become a world-leading airline group through creating value in our services and promising the best in customer experience.

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Receiving the 5-Star Airline Ranking from SKYTRAX for four consecutive years.