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How To Make An Airline Very Successful In Africa?  
User currently offlinenseljac77 From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 22 posts, RR: 0
Posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 5698 times:

I always wonder what formula would make an airline successful in Sub-Saharan Africa. LC/No frills, upscale, hub, point to point? Which destinations can be the most profitable and what are the most appropriate airplanes to use down there? I know those are lots of questions to answer but except KQ and ET (which are small compared to large/successful airlines elsewhere) there is no competition. Arik, Air Ivoire, Air Burkina/Air Mali (Celestair), Aero, Air Mauritanie, TACV, etc… all unsuccessful/uninteresting and very small airlines have certainly not found the way.

How/what would you do differently?

3 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineAesma From Reunion, joined Nov 2009, 8805 posts, RR: 15
Reply 1, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 5660 times:

You can't. Too much corrupted and unstable countries, that's the major problem. In a lot of them, you have to put the president's son or brother as CEO of the airline, so you can see how that won't work.

New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
User currently offlineSSTsomeday From Canada, joined Oct 2006, 1283 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 5591 times:

I'm not an Africa expert by ANY measure: But I would guess...

For one thing, finding a market that will support enough yield to make it profitable.

I suspect that not enough development is happening in many parts of Africa to bring in aid workers, entrepreneurs, humanitarians, businessmen. In certain areas there is tourism, which helps.

Airlines are trying very hard to raise prices to compensate for their very high fuel costs. They do this primarily by reducing frequency and concentrating on high yield passengers. I don't see a lot of high yield going to or from Africa, in general.

Secondly - I think the lack of substantial infrastructure, people with technical knowledge, and isolation make it difficult (read: expensive) for operations and maintenance.

Also, I suspect that insurance costs would be very high, due to many of these reasons, plus security issues.

Lastly - Corruption at many levels, totalitarian systems, and 3rd world work forces would also challenge an efficient and safe operation.

Speaking generally, until Africa begins to come into it's own on the world scene, like China and India are doing, I don't see the will or the financial incentive to launch an airline there.

I come in peace
User currently offlinenseljac77 From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 22 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 5550 times:

Beyond corruption, what I can see is that all existing airlines are poorly managed. Consistency across the fleet, destinations, revenue management/tariffs, punctuality, marketing/brand management, training… Corruption is an issue but I am not sure it is “the issue” for airlines down there.

Clearly with KQ and ET, + SAA trying a venture with the project “Air Cemac” and ET trying Asky in Togo, corruption can be circumvented… now how would you make it successful up to the FR, U2, Air Asia, LAN, TAM, EK, TACA and others.

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