The most recent developments to affect British Airways include the financial crisis that began in 2008. The reduced global business activity adversely affected the airlines industry. As a result, British Airways had to take steps to control its expenses while revenues were not expected to grow in the near future. In pursuit of such measures, British Airways announced 1700 job cuts for its UK cabin crew of 14,000. This measure was intended to reduce labour costs and increase profitability. However, the measure backfired and resulted in an industrial dispute with the cabin crew labour union Unite for almost two years. Most recently, the airlines has merged with Iberia Airlines and now operates under the parent company of International Airlines Group. This illustrates the increasing trend towards privatization in the airlines industry.
Critical issues in the environment have increased the challenges for British Airways. The terrorist attacks of September 2001 created a fear of air travel worldwide and airlines suffered as a result. British Airways being the national carrier of the United Kingdom also suffered. In addition, since 2008, the costs of jet fuel has been volatile, increasing the cost of operations for British Airways. Smaller, smaller budget airlines entered the industry and exploited the needs of the budget travelers. By offering more flexible no-frills services, they catered to the need of the consumers for prompt and flexible service as opposed to the bureaucratic procedures.