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Business Air News Bulletin
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Africa is no longer the 'dumping ground' for old aircraft as ExecuJet expects further growth following Global 6000 arrival
ExecuJet is expecting high demand for its first Global 6000 in Africa, which has joined the company's managed and charter fleet in Johannesburg.
Read this story in our September 2015 printed issue.

ExecuJet is expecting high demand for its first Global 6000 in Africa, which has joined the company's managed and charter fleet in Johannesburg. Director of flight operations for Africa Gavin Kiggen comments: “The Global 6000 has the largest cabin in its class and is equipped with the most advanced and reliable office options to maximise productivity, making it popular among business travellers. It can fly non-stop from Johannesburg to most European cities and is frequently used for flights to the US and Asia. Large-cabin aircraft are becoming increasingly popular in Africa and we anticipate growing our fleet in the coming months.”

ExecuJet currently has 46 aircraft in its African fleet, of which 31 are available for charter. The Global 6000 is the first wide body jet the company has had for management and charter in the continent for almost two years. Kiggen says this is a positive indicator for business aviation in Africa: “The aircraft has come straight off the production line which is attractive for clients that have sensitivity towards the age of the product. As there are more competitors in the market now, the market is a little tougher. Clients are also more price conscious than before and many industries experienced slower business last year. This can be attributed to the Ebola scare and more recently the immigration laws that affect travelling minors from the Department of Home Affairs in South Africa. We have seen a slight downward trend in West Africa but one can attribute that to the crude oil price.

“However, we are seeing a lot of new entrants to the industry in Africa, particularly in the North West. Africa has previously been the dumping ground for older aircraft but this is not the case now, as we are seeing factory-new and late model pre-owned types entering the market.

“Our targets for the remainder of 2015 are to regain market share and to grow our local fleet of mid and wide body aircraft,” he adds. “There is also a focus on growth into the Southern African Development Community region as well as establishing a sizeable managed fleet in West Africa. As customers are key to our success, we plan to focus on getting closer to them which will aid in understanding their needs.”

In addition to its fixed wing fleet, ExecuJet also operates a rotary division in Johannesburg, which was established in partnership with Acher Aviation almost two years ago. It has four helicopters in the fleet and access to any additional helicopters that may be required. Kiggen says that the company will consider operations in Cape Town if the demand is evident.

Additionally, ExecuJet is forecasting increased helicopter operations in Mozambique following a short-term charter contract to supply rotary wing aircraft across the country.

The first charter was conducted in April with the operator's managed fleet, including a Bell 230, AS350 B3e, Bell 407 and two EC130 B4s. These aircraft operate across Mozambique, often between isolated locations.

Greg Binnie represents the rotary wing division for ExecuJet Africa. “We are delighted to have won the contract for vip aviation support across Mozambique, which reflects the considerable investment made by ExecuJet to expand rotary wing operations in Africa,” he says. “We anticipate this contract will make more people aware of the versatile charter service we offer and the group-wide service consistency they can expect from us globally.”