SINGAPORE -- AirAsia CEO and founder Tony Fernandes has not finished with Japan.
Southeast Asia's leading budget airline will be back in the land of the rising sun, Fernandes insists. AirAsia last year pulled out of Japan, dissolving a partnership with major airline operator ANA.
Fernandes' defiant spirit helps drive his company. He has cracked the stronghold of state-run airlines in Southeast Asia over the course of around a decade. Today, the airline market is wide open, he believes.
After setting up low-cost hotels in locations where his airline flies across Southeast Asia, Fernandes' next goal is low-cost hospitals. Japan is one of his few setbacks. But don't count him out. A resurrected AirAsia may be in Japanese skies before the end of the year.