HONG KONG BASED FRONTIER SERVICES COMPLETES PHOENIX AVIATION TAKEOVER
(Posted 11th August 2014)
After acquiring a 49 percent stake in Phoenix Aviation some months ago, as was reported here at the time, at a cost of around 1.2 billion Kenya Shillings or 14 million US Dollars, was the Frontier Services Group now given green light by Kenya’s competition authority to acquire the remaining 51 percent of the Wilson Airport based airline.
The Kenya Civil Aviation Authority had granted Phoenix charter rights from Nairobi to China though it is not clear if the current fleet of aircraft which includes four Citation C550’s, one Citation C560 and an MD 83, among others, will be used for such flights or if Phoenix may perhaps acquire a long haul aircraft for the purpose. A new board of directors and top management are likely to be appointed by the new owners in due course.
Frontier has also acquired a 49 percent share in Kijipwa Aviation just a few weeks before buying into Phoenix, a move which surprised pundits as Kijipwa Aviation, based in Kilifi, was in the past mainly known for flight training and only operates a small fleet of light aircraft.
Frontier, a subsidiary of DVN Holdings, is associated with Erik Prince of Blackwater fame (or infamy) and plenty of speculation is making the rounds in aviation and business circles what the Hong Kong based conglomerate is planning to do with its aviation stake in Kenya. Questions have been asked if this is to be a springboard for other acquisitions or else the precursor of Frontier seeking a major business foothold in the country. After the discovery of oil in Northern Kenya has interest to invest in the sector triggered a boom of sorts and with China’s economic offensive in Kenya there are surely many areas where Frontier as a Chinese company can secure a big slice of the business pie. For information on Frontier’s Kenyan aviation holdings click on www.kijipwa-aviation.com and www.phoenixaviation.co.ke