The Group CEO of Ethiopian Airlines, Tewolde GebreMariam said that the plan to sell a percentage of Ethiopian Airlines will increase its capacity.
Earlier this week the government decided to sell an undisclosed amount of shares of the telecom, electricity and airlines which have long been monopolized by the state .
Tewolde who was asked by journalist if partially privatizing the airline would benefit or decrease its profitability said bringing in a private company will allow the airline to buy more stakes in other African airlines.
“We are preforming well by ourselves but remember that we have a big plan to acquire more shares in some African countries. We currently are working with the best European and American airlines and airplane equipment manufacturing companies and if a potential company purchases some of our shares it will increase our efficiency and performance.” Journalists asked how many shares of Ethiopian will be floated but Tewolde did not respond. Capital asked Dr. Arega Yirdaw, CEO of MIDROC Ethiopia and President to comment on how selling shares will benefit the airlines.
“When you sell a share you get money which helps you pay your debts and do other things that are in your plan. It also brings better service through competition.”
In related news Ethiopian received its 100th operating aircraft, a Boeing 787 Dreamliner on June 6, 2018.
The new aircraft also came with medical equipment donated from the Seattle based NGO, Direct Relief, to St. Paulos Hospital in Addis Ababa. The shipment included surgical stools and other medical supplies to be used for both teaching and patient care.
Tewolde during the celebration remarked that “it is an immense honor for all of us at Ethiopian to reach the milestone of 100 operating aircraft, this milestone is a continuation of our historical aviation leadership role in Africa and a successful implementation of our fast, profitable and sustainable growth plan, Vision 2025.’’
Ethiopian was the first to avail jet service in the continent back in 1962, and operated the first African B767 in 1984, the first African B777-200LR in 2010, the first African B787-800 Dreamliner and B777-200 freighter in 2012 and the first African A350 in 2016 and the first African B787-9 aircraft in 2017.
Michael Raynor, US Ambassador to Ethiopia during the event also said “the arrival of the 100th aircraft in Ethiopian Airlines’ expanding fleet is truly something to celebrate, and I congratulate the Government of Ethiopia, Tewolde Gebremariam, and his entire team on this extraordinary accomplishment. But as impressive as this number is, even more impressive is what it represents. It represents Ethiopia’s ability not only to compete, but to thrive, in the world’s most important and challenging economic sectors. It represents Ethiopian Airlines’ extraordinary success in connecting Africa to the world, and in connecting Africans with each other.”