... the largest non-U.S. airline in terms of passenger
s, although Japan Airlines
beats ANA hands down in terms of RPK
ANA was founded in 1952 and grew during the 1960's and 1970's as Japan's principal domestic airline, buying out Far Eastern Airlines in 1958 and Fujita Airlines in 1963. ANA began flying charters to Hong Kong in 1971, but couldn't start scheduled international service until the Japanese airline industry was partially deregulated in 1986. They proceeded to go hog wild and establish a major international route network, joining the Star Alliance in 1999.
ANA operates a fleet of 141 aircraft, including 26 Boeing 747 series, 21 Boeing 777 series, 52 Boeing 767 series, and 32 Airbus A320 series. Two 747's and one 767 are painted as Pokemon Jets, so you can board the airplane through Pikachu's arsehole. (If you get an ANA timetable in Japan, you can see which flights use the Pokemon Jets by looking for a little Pokemon ball next to the flight number. Seriously.) They also recently painted another 767 with Woody Woodpecker's likeness to publicize the opening of Universal Studios Japan.
Statistically, ANA would seem to be a safer airline than JAL; these are its only major incidents: