#AviaDev2018’s highlights of Day One


(Posted 14th June 2018)

Following the opening cocktails the night before, where it rained drinks and snowed food so to speak, was it all down to business at 09.00 hrs local time sharp, when AviaDev2018 kicked off in earnest.

Using Jon Howell’s words, did the conference take a macro-view of the industry before deep diving into the novel and potentially game-changing approach of Fastjet. The conference, speaker by speaker and panel by panel then looked at how to market routes and more to airlines and exactly who should be involved in the process, before understanding more about the role airlines have to prevent wildlife trafficking. The topics then moved to looking into the future of the LCC in Africa, ably moderated by Africa’s aviation guru Girma Wake.
Notably did this correspondent then raise the question if the name LCC should not make way to the better suited LFC, standing for Low Fare Carrier, a notion enthusiastically supported by the panel. After all is the fundamental cost structure for Africa’s few legacy carriers, full service airlines, hybrids and – as presently called – LCC’s the same with no options for the latter to use a close by but cheaper airport like their European or North American counterparts can do.
The afternoon, following a networking lunch in the conference hall lobby, was set aside for B2B and One on One meetings and there, as was the case in the morning, were the rooms full before everyone had to prepare for the South African Airports Company sponsored dinner at ‘Gold‘.

There delegates were able to sample 14 dishes from 10 African countries, able to appreciate the variety of preparation methods and spicing and no doubt nourishing enough for Day 2 which is unfolding soon.

Delegates with a taste for running, or walking, will assemble at 7 am and buses will then take them to the event venue for AviaDev2018’s charity run which aims to raise funds for and NGO driven school meal programme for needy children – enough has already been raised to feed 50 children for a full year.
Day 2 will again start prompt with a presentation about the future of air transport from UBER to get the room energised and inspired for the day ahead.
Additional panel sessions will then discuss the development and financing of airport infrastructure, the public perception of airlines in Africa and how to drive profitability through new technologies, before finishing the conference sessions with a very special one-to-one interview with Raphael Kuuchi and Ato Girma Wake.

Once again, the afternoon will be dedicated to the B2B and One on One meeting sessions, before a farewell cocktail will bring one of Africa’s key aviation summits to an end.

Updates from the conference room will continue to appear on Twitter (@whthome) with the hashtags #AviaDev2018 or simply #AviaDev throughout the morning session.

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