("fastjet" or the "Company")
MOU with Kenyan Airline & Press Speculation
fastjet, the first pan African low-cost carrier, today announces that it has signed a Memorandum Of Understanding ("MOU") with Kenyan airline, Jetlink. Under the terms of the MOU fastjet and Jetlink are working together to create a joint venture which will give a platform for the launch of the fastjet brand in Kenya. The MOU is subject to a number of conditions precedent including Board and any other necessary approvals.
Jetlink is a Kenyan airline that was launched in 2004 and has traffic rights to all domestic destinations in Kenya, as well as a number of regional destinations. Jetlink operations have been temporarily suspended since November 2012 whilst the company is restructured.
Commenting on the talks with Jetlink, fastjet Chief Executive Officer Ed Winter said:
"This project represents a great opportunity for both parties and discussions are progressing well. A Joint Venture between fastjet and Jetlink will facilitate the launch of the fastjet brand in Kenya within the next few months with immediate access to domestic and regional destinations.
"Kenya is the major economy in East Africa and launching here is an important step towards fastjet becoming a pan African low cost airline, bringing safe, reliable and affordable air travel to more and more people. Talks are not yet finalised but we certainly envisage a combination of Jetlink's strengths and fastjet's interest in Fly540 Kenya creating the optimum platform to launch the fastjet brand in Kenya."
Speaking in Nairobi, Jetlink Chief Executive, Capt. Elly Aluvale, stated:
"Following the recent successful launch of fastjet's low cost operations in Tanzania, we are looking forward to this prospective Joint Venture. We believe the partnership will be mutually beneficial and will go a long way in meeting the current demand for capacity on Kenya's domestic and regional routes. It will also generate new traffic as passengers are attracted by low fares, made possible by fastjet's low cost operating model."
fastJet notes recent reports in the media regarding Five Forty Aviation Limited, the group's Kenyan subsidiary, and is pleased to clarify the situation as follows:
Don Smith and his partners have been paid all amounts due to them, a total sum of US$6.75m. Mr Smith certified in a document signed by him on 24 July 2012 that, other than specified liabilities as set out in the document, there is no other liability or indebtedness due to him or any entity controlled by him. There has never been any agreement that Lonrho Aviation would pay Mr Smith a further sum of US$7m. The purchase of Five Forty Aviation Limited has been fully consummated.
The fastjet management remains fully committed to the company's development and success as it continues to progress towards becoming a pan-African low cost airline. It plans to launch its first international routes shortly and is exploring opportunities with various global carriers and, as already announced, the possible purchase of a South African airline. fastjet commenced flying in November 2012 in line with stated plans and initial results are fantastic. In its first month of operation fastjet has achieved a 78.9% average Load Factor and carried almost 30,000 passengers. No scheduled fastjet flights have been cancelled and 99.6 % arrived within 15 minutes of schedule.
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NOTES TO EDITORS
About fastjet plc
fastjet plc is quoted on the London Stock Exchange's AIM market.
For more information see www.fastjet.com
Posted on 28th January 2013