Shipping & Logistics

How KQ plans to mitigate Covid woes

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Kenya Airways aircraft at JKIA. FILE PHOTO | NMG

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Summary

  • Some of the strategies that the carrier has put in place include launching of a cargo hub in Johannesburg to serve the Southern African countries, direct cargo flights from Mombasa to Nairobi and recently opening one of its Boeing 737 simulators to the public at a fee.

Kenya Airways is banking on a number of new strategies to grow its revenue in the wake of low demand for passengers that has impacted negatively on the airline’s revival bid.

The airline is pursuing every avenue that could help in growing its numbers as the recovery in the aviation sector is forecasted to take at least two more years to reach the pre-Covid level.

Some of the strategies that the carrier has put in place include launching of a cargo hub in Johannesburg to serve the Southern African countries, direct cargo flights from Mombasa to Nairobi and recently opening one of its Boeing 737 simulators to the public at a fee.

The simulator experience will let the public enjoy the flying experience without necessarily having to leave the ground.

Those interested would have to part with at least Sh10,000 to enjoy the experience of a Boeing 737 model and have a feel of what it takes to fly.

“The 30-minute flight simulator experience lets you experience the thrill of flying the Boeing 737 without having to leave the ground. It replicates the state of the art flight deck of modern commercial aircraft with all the visuals and sound effect of a real aircraft,” said KQ.

The carrier officially launched its southern Africa cargo hub last week to serve Lusaka, Maputo, Harare, Lilongwe and Dar-es-salaam.

This means that KQ will no longer have to fly back to Nairobi, as it has been the case before in order to ferry the cargo to these countries where the absence of South African Airways has left a vacuum.

The airline, through its subsidiary KQ Cargo, has also unveiled its ultra-modern pharma facility at its main hub in Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA).

The facility is aimed at generating income by offering storage infrastructure for medicine that are both meant for Kenya and those on transit to other countries.

KQ says the facility was not put up with the sole purpose of the Covid-19 vaccine as it has widely been reported in the media. All these developments are aimed at bolstering the revenue for the airline that has been in the red for years now.

The carrier sunk deeper into losses for the first half of this year, impacted by a four-month grounding on passenger services and reduced volumes of cargo handled.

The national carrier reported a net loss of Sh14.4 billion in the six months to June, a 67 per cent decline from a loss of Sh8.5 billion recorded in corresponding period last year. The loss for the six-month period was more than the Sh12.99 billion.