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Kenya Airways

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Kenya Airways
Kenya Airways Logo.svg
IATA ICAO Callsign
KQ[1] KQA[1] KENYA
Founded 22 January 1977; 39 years ago (1977-01-22)
Commenced operations 4 February 1977 (1977-02-04)
Hubs
Frequent-flyer program Flying Blue
Airport lounge
  • JV Lounge
  • Simba Lounge
Alliance SkyTeam
Subsidiaries
  • African Cargo Handling Limited (100%)
  • Jambojet (100%)
  • Kenya Airfreight Handling Limited (51%)
Fleet size 45
Destinations 62[2]
Company slogan ′′The Pride of Africa′′
Headquarters Embakasi, Nairobi, Kenya
Key people
  • Dennis Awori (Chairman)
  • Mbuvi Nguze (Managing director and CEO)
Revenue Increase KSh116,158 million (FY 2016)[3]
Operating income Increase –KSh4,093 million (FY 2016)[3]
Net income Increase –KSh3,479 million (FY 2016)[3]
Profit Increase −KSh26,099 million (FY 2016)
Total assets Decrease 158,415 million (FY 2016)[3]
Employees 3,986
Website kenya-airways.com

Kenya Airways Ltd., more commonly known as Kenya Airways, is the flag carrier of Kenya.[4] The company was founded in 1977, after the dissolution of East African Airways. The carrier's head office is located in Embakasi, Nairobi,[5] with its hub at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.[6]

The airline was wholly owned by the Government of Kenya until April 1995 (1995-04), and it was privatised in 1996, becoming the first African flag carrier to successfully do so.[7] Kenya Airways is currently a public-private partnership. The largest shareholder is the Government of Kenya (29.8.%), followed by KLM, which has a 26.73% stake in the company. The rest of the shares are held by private owners; shares are traded on the Nairobi Stock Exchange, the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange, and the Uganda Securities Exchange.[7][8]

Kenya Airways is considered one of the leading Sub-Saharan operators;[9] as of January 2013 and was ranked fourth among the top ten African airlines by seat capacity, behind South African Airways, Ethiopian Airlines and EgyptAir.[10] The airline became a full member of SkyTeam in June 2010 (2010-06), and is also a member of the African Airlines Association since 1977.[11][12]

History[edit]

Kenya Airways was established by the Kenyan government on 22 January 1977 (1977-01-22), following the break-up of the East African Community and the consequent demise of East African Airways (EAA).[11][13][14] On 4 February 1977 (1977-02-04),[15]:90 two Boeing 707–321s leased from British Midland Airways inaugurated operations,[16] serving the Nairobi–Frankfurt–London route.[17] On internal and regional flights, the carrier deployed aircraft formerly operated by the EAA consortium, such as one Douglas DC-9-52 and three Fokker F-27-200s.[17][nb 1] In late 1977, three Boeing 707s were acquired from Northwest Orient.[19] The following year, the company formed a charter subsidiary named Kenya Flamingo Airlines, which leased aircraft from the parent airline in order to operate international passenger and cargo services.[20] Aer Lingus provided the company with technical and management support in the early years.[21]

A Kenya Airways Fokker F27-200 at Moi International Airport in 1982.

In July 1980 (1980-07) the airline had 2,100 employees and a fleet of three Boeing 707-320Bs, one Boeing 720B, one DC-9-30 and three Fokker F-27-200s. At this time, Addis Ababa, Athens, Bombay, Cairo, Copenhagen, Frankfurt, Jeddah, Kampala, Karachi, Khartoum, London, Lusaka, Mauritius, Mogadishu, Rome, Salisbury, Seychelles and Zurich were among the airline's international destinations, whereas domestic routes radiated from Nairobi to Kisumu, Malindi, Mombasa and Mumias.[14] A Nairobi–Bombay nonstop route was launched in 1982 using Boeing 707-320Bs.[22] A year later, the company commenced serving Tanzania. Flights to Burundi, Malawi and Rwanda were launched in 1984. Capacity on the European routes was boosted in November 1985 (1985-11) with the incorporation of an Airbus A310-200 leased from Condor. Kilimanjaro was first served in March 1986 (1986-03).[23] That year, the airline ordered two Airbus A310-300s. Kenya Airways was the first African carrier to acquire the type, and they were the first wide-bodies ordered by the company.[24] Funded with a US$20,000,000 (equivalent to $43,248,330 in 2015) loan,[25] the delivery of these two aircraft took place in May and September 1986 (1986-09).[23][26] They flew on the Kenya–Europe corridor, and permitted Kenya Airways to return the A310-200 to the lessor.[23] In early 1988, the carrier ordered two Fokker 50s;[27] for domestic routes, the airline received the first of these aircraft at the end of the year.[28] Also in 1988, the lease of a third A310-300 was arranged with the International Lease Finance for a ten-year period;[29] the aircraft joined the fleet in November 1989 (1989-11).[30] Leased from Ansett Worldwide, the first Boeing 757-200 was received in January 1990 (1990-01), whereas a third Fokker 50 was acquired in October the same year. By late 1991, two Boeing 737-200s had been leased from Guiness Peat Aviation.[30]

A Kenya Airways Airbus A310-300 at Fiumicino Airport in 1999. With registration 5Y-BFT, this particular aircraft entered the fleet in November 1989 (1989-11).[30]

In 1986, Sessional Paper Number 1 was published by the Government of Kenya, outlining the country's need for economic development and growth. The document stressed the government opinion that the airline would be better off privately owned, thus resulting in the first privatisation attempt. The government named Philip Ndegwa as Chairman of the Board in 1991, with specific orders to make the airline a privately owned company. In 1992, the Public Enterprise Reform paper was published, giving Kenya Airways priority among national companies in Kenya to be privatised.[11] Ndegwa was succeeded by Isaac Omolo Okero. In September 1992 (1992-09), Brian Davies, was appointed as the new managing director of the company.[30] Davies had been previously hired to carry out a study of viability on privatisation,[30] working for British Airways' Speedwing consulting arm.[31] Swissair was the first company to provide Kenya Airways with privatisation advice.[30] In the fiscal year 1993 to 1994, the airline produced its first profit since the start of commercialisation.[32] In 1994, the International Finance Corporation was appointed to provide assistance in the privatisation process, which effectively began in 1995.[33] A large aviation industry partner was sought to acquire 40% of the shares, with another 40% reserved for private investors and the government keeping the remaining stake. The government would absorb almost US$90 million in debts and would convert another US$31 million it provided in loans into equity; after reorganisation, the company would have a debt of approximate US$78 million.[30] British Airways, KLM, Lufthansa and South African Airways were among the airlines expressing interest in taking a stake in Kenya Airways.[32][33][34]

KLM was awarded the privatisation of the company, which restructured its debts and made a master corporation agreement with KLM, which bought 26% of the shares, becoming the largest single shareholder since then.[33][35][36] Shares were floated to the public in March 1996 (1996-03), and the airline started trading on the Nairobi Stock Exchange.[37] The Government of Kenya kept a 23% stake in the company, and offered the remaining 51% to the public; however, non-Kenyan shareholders could hold a maximum 49% share of the airline.[33][35][36] Despite 40% of the shares being kept by foreign investors following privatisation (including KLM's 26% stake), top management positions were held by Kenyans.[31] Following the takeover, the government of Kenya capitalised US$70 million, while the airline was awarded a US$15 million loan from the International Finance Corporation to modernise its fleet.[33] In a deal worth US$82 million, two Boeing 737-300s were ordered in July 1996 (1996-07).[38]

In January 2000 (2000-01), the airline experienced its first fatal accident when an Airbus A310 that had been bought new in 1986 crashed off Ivory Coast, shortly after taking off from Abidjan.[39][40] By April the same year, the fleet consisted of four Airbus A310-300s,[nb 2] two Boeing 737-200 Advanced and four Boeing 737-300s. At this time the company had a staff of 2,780, including 400 engineers, 146 flight crew and 365 cabin crew. From its main hub at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, scheduled services were operated to Abidjan, Addis Ababa, Amsterdam, Bujumbura, Cairo, Copenhagen, Dar es Salaam, Douala, Dubai, Eldoret, Entebbe/Kampala, Harare, Johannesburg, Karachi, Khartoum, Kigali, Kinshasa, Lagos, Lilongwe, Lokichoggio, London, Lusaka, Mahe Island, Malindi, Mombasa, Mumbai, and Zanzibar.[15]:90 In 2002, an order for three Boeing 777-200ERs was placed with Boeing; an additional aircraft of the type was acquired in November 2005 (2005-11).[41] In March 2006 (2006-03), six Boeing 787-8s were ordered; the first two examples would be delivered in 2010 and the rest in 2011.[42] The original Boeing 787 order was amended nine months later to include three more aircraft of the type.[43]

In June 2012 (2012-06) the company announced the issuance of rights worth KSh20 billion, aimed at increasing capital to support expansion plans.[44][45][46] Following the allocation of shares, KLM increased their stake in the company from 26% to 26.73%, while the Kenyan government boosted their participation into the company from 23% to 29.8%, becoming the largest shareholder.[47][48]

Corporate affairs[edit]

Key people[edit]

As of February 2016, Kenya Airways' Managing Director and chief executive officer (CEO) positions were held by Mbuvi Ngunze.[49] Ngunze, who had been appointed CEO in June 2014 (2014-06), was the company's former chief operating officer.[50] Dennis Awori was the airline's chairman, as of July 2016.[51]

Subsidiaries and associates[edit]

The cargo handling company African Cargo Handling Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of Kenya Airways; partly owned companies are Kenya Airfreight Handling Limited, dedicated to the cargo handling of perishable goods (51%-owned)[52] and Tanzanian carrier Precision Air (41.23%-owned).[53] A new low-cost subsidiary named Jambojet was created in 2013.[54]

Business trends[edit]

The key trends for the Kenya Airways group over recent years are shown below (as at year ending 31 March):

2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Turnover (KSh m) 30,984 42,234 52,804 58,792 60,471 71,829 70,743 85,836 107,897 98,860 106,009 110,161 116,158
Profits before tax (EBT) (KSh m) 2,075 5,520 6,960 5,975 6,526 −5,664 2,671 5,002 2,146 −10,826 −4,861 −29,712 −26,099
Number of employees 2,977 3,222 3,599 4,154 4,267 4,179 4,133 4,355 4,834 4,006 3,989 4,002 3,870
Number of passengers (m) 1.7 2.0 2.4 2.6 2.7 2.8 2.9 3.1 3.6 3.7 3.7 4.2 4.2
Passenger load factor (%) 70.2 75.4 74.2 73.6 70.4 70.8 66.5 69.2 71.7 68.7 65.6 63.6 68.3
Number of aircraft (at year end) 19 20 21 23 24 28 27 31 34 43 47 52 47
Notes/sources [55] [55] [56] [56] [57] [57] [57] [58] [58] [59][53] [60] [61][62] [63]

Destinations[edit]

Alliances[edit]

KLM sponsored Kenya Airways' SkyTeam candidacy process in mid-2005.[64] In September 2007 (2007-09), Kenya Airways became one of the first official SkyTeam Associate Airlines[65][66] and achieved full membership in June 2010 (2010-06).[67][68] The alliance provides Kenya Airways' passengers with access to the member airlines' worldwide network and passenger facilities.[69][70]

Codeshare agreements[edit]

Kenya Airways codeshares with the following airlines:[71]

Future plans[edit]

In April 2012 (2012-04), the airline launched a plan named Project Mawingu (the Swahili word meaning Clouds) to add 24 destinations by 2021, including the start of services to Australia, and North and South America, and expanding its presence in Asia as well; this includes initiating routes to Chengdu, Chennai, and Perth in Fiscal Year 2016-17 and to Chongqing, Hyderabad, and Washington, D.C. in Fiscal Year 2017-18.[76]

In October 2013 (2013-10), the airline stated that it will add six new destinations every year, following the delivery of Boeing 777s and 787s the carrier has on order.[77]

Fleet[edit]

A Kenya Airways Boeing 777-300ER on short final to Amsterdam Airport Schiphol in 2014.
A Boeing 777-200ER at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol in 2013

As of November 2016, the Kenya Airways fleet consists of the following aircraft:[78]

Kenya Airways Fleet
Aircraft In Service Orders Passengers Notes
C Y Total
Boeing 737-300 2 16 100 116
Boeing 737-700 4 16 100 116
Boeing 737-800 8 16 129 145
Boeing 777-200ER 4 28 294 322
Boeing 777-300ER 3 28 372 400[79]
Boeing 787–8 7 30 204 234 Two to be wet-leased to Oman Air[80][81]
Embraer ERJ-190 15 12 84 96[82]
Boeing 737-300F 2[83] Cargo
Total 45

Retired fleet[edit]

The company has previously operated the following aircraft:[84]

Kenya Airways retired fleet
An Ireland-registered Douglas DC-8-70 wearing Kenya Airways livery at Fiumicino Airport in 1990
A Boeing 767-300ER at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol in 2011
An Embraer 170 at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in 2007

Recent developments and future plans[edit]

The first of five Embraer 190s ordered in 2010 was incorporated into the fleet in December that year.[89][90] An additional order for ten aircraft of the same type was placed in August 2011;[89] the carrier took delivery of the first and second of these fully owned aircraft thirteen months later.[91][92]

The company announced in February 2011 its intention of acquiring a freighter aircraft to boost cargo capacity on African operations.[93] Until February 2012, when a joint freighter service with KLM was launched, the carrier's cargo division had been using belly capacity on its operations; there are plans to buy and lease more freighter aircraft in order to boost capacity in the growing cargo market between Africa and Asia.[94] Furthermore, the airline announced in October 2012 the conversion of some Boeing 737-300s into freighter aircraft to complement the Boeing 747-400F service jointly operated with KLM and Martinair Cargo.[95] The first of four converted Boeing 737-300s was delivered to the company in April 2013 (2013-04); Kenya Airways planned to fly this aircraft on African routes served by the Embraer 190s, in order to boost cargo capacity.[96] The company took delivery of its first Boeing 777-300ER in October 2013.[79][97]

Kenya Airways had nine Boeing 787 Dreamliners on order as of April 2011, although the company considered cancelling the order after systematic delays with the delivery dates.[43][98] The handover of the first Boeing 787 took place on 4 April 2014.[99][100] Two days later, Nairobi–Paris became the first route to be served by the Boeing 787.[101]

In April 2015 the carrier was set to sell some aircraft, including four Boeing 777s, following a decrease in passenger traffic.[102][103]

Livery[edit]

The airline's old and new livery can be seen here on this Boeing 737-700. The left picture was taken in 2006, while the right image shows the same aircraft in 2007.

In 2005, Kenya Airways changed its livery. The four stripes running all through the length of the fuselage were replaced by the company slogan Pride of Africa, whereas the KA tail logo was replaced by a styled K encircled with a Q to evoke the airline's IATA airline code.

Services[edit]

Frequent flyer programmes[edit]

Former Kenya Airways' frequent flyer programme Msafiri was merged with KLM's Flying Dutchman in 1997,[11] which was in turn merged with that of Air France and rebranded as Flying Blue in 2005, following the fusion of both companies. Gold Elite and Platinum Elite members of the Flying Blue programme are offered the JV Lounge.[104] This service is provided to Kenya Airways passengers, and to passengers flying with its partner airlines as well.[104] Simba Lounge is a service provided to Kenya Airways Business passengers only.[104] Both lounges are located at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.[104]

In-flight entertainment[edit]

Different in-flight entertainment is available depending upon the aircraft and the class travelled. The airline's in-flight magazine is called Msafiri, and is distributed among the passengers in all aircraft, irrespective of the class.[105]

  • Boeing 777-300ER/Boeing 787-8

Premier World entertainment is AVOD; NVOD is offered in Economy class.[106][107]

  • Boeing 777-200ER

Premier World entertainment is AVOD, while NVOD is offered in Economy class. Twelve audio channels are available in both classes.[108]

  • Boeing 737–700/800

Overhead screens in both classes, plus eight channels of audio offered.[109]

  • Boeing 737–300

Background music playing throughout the flight.[110]

  • Embraer 190

Individual in-seat touchscreens.[111]

Accidents and incidents[edit]

5Y-BBK, a Kenya Airways Boeing 707-320B, resulted damaged beyond economical repair on 11 July 1989, in an accident at Bole International Airport. The aircraft is seen here on the apron at Zürich Airport in 1986.

As of October 2014, Kenya Airways has had two fatal accidents and two hull loss accidents.[112]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Flight International also reported that Kenya Airways flew Douglas DC-9-32s previously operated by EAA.[18]
  2. ^ It is likely that Flight International records had not been updated at the time of publish. Another source informed that the number of A310s in fleet immediately after the crash was three.[40]

References[edit]

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  14. ^ a b
  15. ^ a b
  16. ^ a b
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Bibliography[edit]

  • Guttery, Ben R. (1998). Encyclopedia of African Airlines. Jefferson, North Carolina 28640: Mc Farland & Company, Inc. ISBN 0-7864-0495-7. 

External links[edit]