This Day (Lagos)

Nigeria: European Firms Injects U.S.$40 Million Into Local Executive Business Aviation

Jet Alliance, an Austrian aviation company in conjunction with Spherus Aviation, a German company, has injected $40 million into executive business aviation in the country.

Speaking yesterday in Abuja during the flight demonstration, Chairman Spherus Aviation, Sebastine Kester, said the companies were in Nigeria to meet the needs of the very important personalities (VIPs), in the area of chartered aircraft.

Kester, who spoke with THISDAY at the local airport, Abuja, said apart from the aircraft, numbering three in the country, his company, Spherus Aviation was also into training and bringing foreign investors into the sector in Nigeria.

He said: "My company, Spherus Aviation, is in Nigeria to sell business airplanes to both individuals and corporate entities as well as flight desk management. Working with the Jet Alliance is one of the very operations we have embarked upon in the country and we will provide world class operation that will make Nigeria a leading corporate jet hub in the sub region".

Chairman/ Sales and Operation, Jet Alliance, Mr. Norbert Winkler, said so far, his company had employed about 60 people into the business with the three aircraft currently in operation of private airline in the country.

Winkler also said with time, his company would bring in two additional aircraft into the country for private and charter usage.

"Currently, we have three aircraft in the country for private and individual usage. Two are in Ghana, but we are planning to bring in two more into the country making a total number of five in all for the private and charter operations in the country."

Explaining further, he said the company was also collaborating with a local company with 51 percent, while other international ones are injecting 49 percent of the total cost and investment.

"With the enabling environment created by the aviation minister, Nigeria airspace is poised to enjoy unprecedented patronage. Jet Alliance is ensuring that scores of VIPs in need of private flight, both for personal and charter will enjoy good service for their money.

"The three private jets are to be stationed in both Lagos and Abuja, with Lagos having two, while Abuja will hang one. Each has at least, 10 seats, with all conveniences put in place while the charges would vary from distance and kilometre. Meanwhile, all flights would be local but with time, we will introduce international flight into the line of our business", the Jet Alliance boss stated.

He said the aircrafts, which were manufactured three years ago in Austrial, would be in existence for at least 15 years with adequate maintenance.

The Chairman of Cita-Triax Aviation, Chief Cliff Ogbede, said his company, which is the local partner of the group, would ensure that customers, who are mainly important personalities, get good products for their money.

Ogbede said so far, the aircraft were ready for immediate shuttle or charter operations immediately after the tour of Abuja and Lagos, which ended on Friday.

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