19th September, 2012
Arik Air said on Tuesday it has now carried 10 million passengers since 2006 when the airline began operation.
“The carriage of ten million passengers is an important milestone for an airline that has grown rapidly since it began operating in 2006. This year alone Arik has transported over 1.5 million passengers across its expanding network of 20 domestic, 10 regional and three long-haul destinations,” Arik said in a statement.
The airline said that Nigerian businessman Abdul Aziz Mustapha, director of RealNet Sandton Properties, became Arik Air’s 10 millionth guest, travelling on the airline’s Johannesburg to Lagos route, one of the airline’s key long-haul destinations.
“Mr Mustapha was greeted by Arik Air’s Vice President South Africa, Rodger Whittle, upon check-in at Johannesburg’s O.R. Tambo International Airport, presented with an Arik Air memento, an upgrade to business class for the flight and a pair of complimentary business class tickets for his next Arik Air flight,” Arik said.
Arik said that since it began carrying passengers on its first route in October 2006, it now employs over 1,500 staff worldwide, operates an average of 120 flights a day and is currently the leading carrier in Nigeria with 63% share of the market capacity.
“In addition to its regional destinations and Johannesburg schedule, Arik Air’s long-haul routes from Lagos to both London Heathrow and New York JFK have strengthened the airline’s international presence,” Arik said.
Dr Michael Arumemi-Ikhide, Group CEO/ President of Arik Air, was quoted to have said of the milestone: “Carrying ten million passengers in less than six years is a remarkable achievement for Arik Air that further underlines our status as Africa’s fastest growing airline. We are particularly proud to have achieved this milestone on one of our three long-haul routes, which remain an important focus for us in expanding our global network.”
By Simon Ateba