Services

Diemacher, LLC is a consulting firm managed by B. Ben Baldanza. Ben has repeatedly revitalized struggling companies through his ability to communicate complicated ideas in understandable ways. Baldanza provides businesses and media alike an invaluable external perspective and coherent pundit.

Independent Board Service

  • Knowledge and competence in modern public company board issues
  • Mentor to new-in-the-role CEOs
  • Going public using an IPO

Consulting

  • Companies that are struggling with their business models
  • External perspective as companies manage complex transitions
  • Executing strong growth plans
  • Troubleshooting issues as businesses grow

Speaking Engagements

  • Speaking engagements to energize an audience
  • Key lessons that affect organizations
  • Managing change and the quickly evolving competitive landscape

Media Appearances

  • Providing insight on the airline industry
  • Communicating business strategies in ways that are digestible and understandable
  • Strong business policy opinions when appropriate

Learning about How Airlines Work

  • “Learning about How Airlines Work” based on the successful “Airline Economics” class taught at George Mason University
  • Adapting key ideas from this class into one hour or half-day sessions — successful repeat sessions for a local “Lifelong Learning” institute in Virginia

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Success Stories


Spirit Airlines

From a large, money-losing, $400M revenue airline in 2005 to a $1.2B IPO in 2011 and a market cap over $4B in 2013, the Spirit Airlines transformation is an amazing story. Spirit pioneered the idea of an “ultra low cost” airline in North America, and copied proven strategies from Southwest and RyanAir to innovate new ideas during the overhaul of its business model. Spirit chose to build an airline focused on customers who pay for tickets themselves, and therefore tend to be highly price elastic in their air travel decisions. In doing so, it turned away from the customer that most airlines covet: the high-fare paying business traveler.

Spirit Airlines crafted a simple, four-part customer proposition: have the lowest price to where you want to fly, be friendly, be reliable, and be clean. Based on these ideas, Spirit lowered its costs through high-utilization and productivity of all assets, and unbundled its pricing structure so that customers could choose to lower their price further by changing their behavior. Even while being criticized by the press, Spirit’s customer ranks grew to record levels and customers saved millions of dollars compared to previous air travel options. Other airlines noticed this success and have copied many of Spirit’s original approaches in their own companies.

Does your business need a re-think of its core purpose and business model? Is there a hidden growth engine and value creator in your asset base that is waiting to be unleashed?

Let Ben Baldanza help you think about your business the way he lead Spirit through its transformation.

Continental Airlines

In the 1990s, Continental was known for having 10 presidents in 10 years, lackluster service, and union-busting tactics that alienated their employees. When Gordon Bethune became the CEO, he and Greg Brenneman authored the “Go Forward” plan that would guide Continental to levels of profitability never before seen and customer service that was considered among the best in the industry. 

To drive their revenue strategy, Gordon hired Ben Baldanza to lead the pricing and route scheduling areas of the company. Over three years, Continental’s unit revenue metrics moved from just 78% of industry average to 115% of industry average — the route network grew especially internationally to Europe and Latin America.

TACA Airlines

TACA Airlines was privately owned in the mid-1990s and the TACA owners used the airline profits to purchase the failing carriers of Honduras, Guatemala, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua. TACA hired Ben Baldanza as their COO to merge the five separate airlines into one operationally, and to re-brand the airlines as “Grupo Taca”. Using a simple but powerful idea to merge “Latin Hospitality” with “World Class Standards” of reliability and service, Ben brought in new talent and helped to create a powerful regional brand that established partnerships with large North American Carriers, and eventually merged with Colombia’s Avianca.

NewLeaf Travel

NewLeaf Travel began as a seller of airline seats to small cities in Canada. NewLeaf was a true virtual airline, as the flying was all done by a third-party operator called Flair. Ben Baldanza was asked to chair this venture. After a year of operations, it was clear that merging the marketing organization of NewLeaf with the operations at Flair would create a more stable and annually profitable venture. The merger was completed and now Flair Air complements the charter services traditionally offered by Flair.


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