Air Arabia sets up Egyptian carrier, third hub
Cairo, September 9, 2009
Air Arabia, the largest low-cost carrier (LCC) in the Middle East and North Africa, and Travco Group, a leading travel and hospitality group in the region, have signed a joint venture agreement to launch a new low cost carrier based in Egypt.
The new carrier will serve Europe, Africa and Asia markets and will represent Air Arabia's third hub after UAE and Morocco, said a statement.
Building upon Air Arabia’s existing services to 57 destinations across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia, the new airline will contribute to the on-going development of the Egyptian travel and tourism sector as well as offer a larger base of value for money air travel, it said..
“The enormous commercial success of Air Arabia in the six years since the carrier was launched makes clear the strength of its business model, which we are confident will allow Air Arabia ‘Egypt’ to reach new heights,” said Hamed El Chiaty, chairman and CEO of Travco Group. “As the country’s most qualified tourism and hospitality group, the Travco Group will provide its own keen insights into the European and Egyptian markets as well as the wider region.”
“On behalf of the Air Arabia Group, I am delighted to announce this new partnership with the Travco Group, that will expand Air Arabia services in Egypt and across the wider Europe, Africa and Asia region,” said Sheikh Abdullah Bin Mohammed Al Thani, chairman of Air Arabia. “At a time when the global aviation industry is witnessing serious challenges as a consequence of the worldwide financial crisis, we continue to move forward with our strategic expansion strategy, as demonstrated by this important announcement. Through this new partnership, we look forward to replicate the success Air Arabia has already achieved from its existing hubs.”
The new carrier, whose operations will be managed by the Air Arabia Group, will follow the successful low-cost model pioneered in the Middle East and North Africa by Air Arabia. Further information regarding the new joint venture will be communicated in the near future, said the statement.
Air Arabia, which currently operates a total fleet of 20 new Airbus A320 aircraft, launched service from Sharjah, UAE, in October 2003. Earlier in May this year, the airline launched its second hub in Mohammed V International Airport in Casablanca, currently providing service to 11 destinations across Europe and North Africa. The airline has a confirmed order with Airbus for the purchase of 44 A320 aircraft.
Travco Group employs over 24,000 professionals, generating over € 1 billion in revenues. Travco Group operates an extensive collection of 146 hotels, resorts and cruises in Europe, Egypt, the Middle East; two mega-real estate developments on Egypt’s North Coast and the Red Sea; a large fleet of 1,200 tourist transport vehicles and a full range of aviation services including the nationwide presence of ticketing offices and aircraft ground handling services. - TradeArabia News Service