fastjet signs Memorandum of Understanding with Red 1 Airways to operate in Nigeria - 13 June 2013

fastjet plc

("fastjet" or the "Company")

13 June 2013

fastjet signs Memorandum of Understanding with Red 1 Airways to operate in Nigeria

fastjet plc (fastjet), Africa's low-cost airline, has today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Nigeria's Red 1 Airways Ltd (Red 1), to create a low-cost airline operating within Nigeria and to destinations across  Africa.

The MoU brings together fastjet's strong brand, reputation, management experience and economies of scale, and RED 1's extensive local market knowledge within Nigeria.  The airline will be branded fastjet Nigeria.

The capital required for this venture will be the responsibility of Red 1. fastjet plc will have a minority shareholding in fastjet Nigeria. A commercial arrangement will exist between Red 1 and fastjet for the provision of the fastjet Brand, Operational Framework and Management Services. Fastjet will provide further details on the signing of binding contracts.

Since launching in Tanzania in November 2012, fastjet has established itself as a provider of safe, reliable and high quality air travel in Africa; fastjet Nigeria intends to bring this same level of service to  Nigeria, the most populated country in Africa with more than 165million people.

The fastjet Nigeria management team will be led by Red 1, who will oversee day-to-day operations, while the fastjet plc management team will bring its extensive experience and expertise of the low-cost airline industry to the partnership. Operating within fastjet's growing pan-African organisation the partnership is planned to provide fastjet Nigeria with an extensive distribution network.

Commenting on today's news, fastjet CEO Ed Winter said:

"The combination of fastjet's brand and experience and Red 1's extensive knowledge of the local aviation market and Nigerian business landscape, is a perfect foundation for a great airline. The Nigerian people deserve a new airline offering great value and operating to international standards of safety and reliability."

Red 1 CEO Dikko Nwachukwu added:

"We are excited to partner with fastjet and humbled to be working on bringing Nigeria its first true Low Cost Carrier.  At Red 1 our motto is "now every1 can fly" and we aim to make air travel affordable so more Nigerians can choose to travel by air.   Our experienced management team has spent 10 years fine-tuning the business plan and waiting for the right opportunity to meet the increasing demand for affordable air travel in Nigeria. The time has now come to partner with fastjet and seek to provide Nigeria with a world-class low cost carrier."

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NOTES TO EDITORS

About fastjet plc

fastjet plc is the holding company for African airline Fly540, which operates in Tanzania, Kenya, Ghana and Angola. Flights under the fastjet brand commenced in Tanzania in November 2012. The airline has introduced Airbus A319s into its fleet and by adhering to international standards of safety, quality, security and reliability; fastjet has brought a new flying experience to the African market at unprecedented low prices. fastjet is implementing the low-cost model across Africa and its long-term strategy is to become the continent's first low-cost, pan-African airline.

In the year to March 2013, fastjet and its subsidiaries carried almost 800,000 passengers, 50% more than a year previously and 99.2 per cent of its flights left on time with no cancellations.

 fastjet plc is quoted on the London Stock Exchange's AIM market.

For more information see www.fastjet.com 

 

About RED 1 Airways, Ltd

Red 1 is a Nigerian commercial aviation business and airline holding company based in Abuja, Nigeria. RED 1 is in the process of obtaining an Airline Operating Certificate ('AOC') and finalizing plans to start a low cost airline operation to service Nigeria and the rest of Africa from Nigeria. The airline's focus will be to create a true short haul route network while operating on three customer-focused strategies: 1. Market stimulation, 2. Stringent cost controls, and 3. Capacity utilization. The company's goal is to significantly increase the size of the Nigerian air transport market, by stimulating demand for air travel from road travelers and attracting value conscious air travelers to fly more often. As a result of expensive air travel and no rail service, it is estimated 60-70 million Nigerians travel by road every year. RED 1 will convert existing road travelers by offering comparable fares to travel by air.

 

About Nigeria

Nigeria is the 7th most populated country in the world with more than 165 million inhabitants and approximately 10 cities with populations in excess of one million.   It is home to approximately 15 per cent of Africa's total population and has the continent's biggest work force and third-highest GDP.

Due to its sub-standard roads, Nigeria has one of the highest rates of traffic accidents in the world. This emphasises the need for access to affordable and reliable air travel, which would reduce the need to make long, dangerous journeys on the road.

After South Africa, Nigeria is Africa's biggest aviation market by seats. However, the number of domestic seats available has been cut almost in half over the past two years from around 155,733 to 81,078 per week.

It is estimated that Nigeria has approximately 44 million internet users and approximately 88 million mobile phone users who could gain access to fastjet's airfares both online and through their mobiles.

Posted on 13th June 2013