Cape Town - Aviation group, Fresh Air has partnered with
SA's 1Time Holdings [JSE:1TM] to launch Zimbabwe's first budget airline, the companies
said in a statement on Friday.
The airline will begin offering flights, initially from
Victoria Falls in September this year.
As part of the agreement, 1Time will stop its Livingstone
route and will fly between Johannesburg and Victoria Falls instead. The route
would subsequently become a Fresh Air operation.
1Time CEO Blacky Komani said the joint venture provided a
great opportunity for both companies on the continent.
“Our partnership with Fresh Air is simple; we share our
experience and infrastructure in the aviation industry while Fresh Air launches
Zimbabwe’s first low-cost carrier, with licences to operate the underserviced
domestic market and various regional routes to be announced in the near future.
In doing so, Fresh Air are creating jobs and building a foundation for a
sustainable business,” Komani said.
Chakanyuka Karase, CEO of Fresh Air said that the airline’s
entry into the market and strategic partnership with 1time would provide a real
opportunity to stimulate domestic and regional air travel for Zimbabwe.
“The entry of a low-cost carrier in Zimbabwe has great
potential, and we are proud to have launched into this partnership with 1time,
who already has palpable successes in the no-frills market. We have absolutely
no doubt that this business model will succeed as it is exactly what our
emerging economy needs to maintain sustainability, and is an efficient way to
connect families, businesses and tourist destinations,” Karase said.
Komani added that the agreement would ultimately further
growth and development in Africa.
“Our joint venture not only demonstrates that we foster
successful cross-border partnerships, but that together we contribute to
regional growth in Africa by providing people with additional travel options at
affordable prices,” he said.