Zuma’s son behind Fastjet, new low-cost airline to launch in SA soon

2013-04-25 00:00

CAPE TOWN — President Jacob Zuma’s son Edward is behind a new low-cost airline that is set to launch in May.

The new privately run airline will fly under the name of Fastjet, a European carrier spreading its wings into Africa.

The group already operates in Tanzania and has been struggling for access to local airspace.

Fastjet initially wanted to buy the liquidated 1Time company, but that plan was dropped, partly because local aviation legislation stipulates that airlines must be at least 75% South African owned.

Zuma’s investment company, Blockbuster, will own 75% of the company under a co-operation agreement with Fastjet, which will own the remaining 25%.

Kyle Haywood, Fastjet’s Africa manager, said Blockbuster already owns several successful African businesses.

“Fastjet will bring airline knowledge and experience to the table.” He said the agreement sets out the responsibilities of each party.

At first, Fastjet will operate one jet between Johannesburg and Cape Town, but is busy registering more planes.

“The plan is to expand to other routes. We are busy appointing staff and have appointed some of 1Time’s former staff,” he said.

The consortium will use the licence of Federal Air, a Johannesburg airline charter company. According to the Federal Air website, the licence permits flights to neighbouring countries. Fastjet will therefore be able to operate in the region.

Haywood said that with the collapse of 1Time at the end of last year, airline ticket prices have risen considerably.

“The demand for tickets is still strong, but supply is limited. We believe the new airline will offer South Africans welcome relief,” he said.

When 1Time was liquidated, it was operating 10 planes on 33 daily flights to eight destinations, with 120 000 passengers a month.

Fastjet’s biggest competition will be national carrier SAA’s low-cost affiliate, Mango, and Comair’s Kulula.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.