SHAREHOLDERS of the Middle East’s only private scheduled air-line Jazeera Airways have approved and increase in capital by 100 per cent to KD20 million ($69 million) and listing of company shares on the Kuwait Stock Exchange in the first quarter of 2007.
Shareholders have approved the Board of Directors’ recommendation to increase capital by issuing 100 million shares for subscription with a nominal share value of 100fils. Subscription priority will be for shareholders during a 15-day period.
By doubling its capital, Jazeera Airways intends to gain financial flexibility to fund general working capital needs and capital expenditures, such as growing its fleet of Airbus A320s. Jazeera Airways current fleet consists of 10 new Airbus A320s, four of which were delivered in the last 12 months. The airline also has options for an additional six aircraft of the same type.
Commenting on the capital increase, chairman and CEO Marwan Boodai said, “We accelerated the execution of our organic growth strategy, with the goal of creating value for our shareholders by stepping-up our aircraft orders and widening our destinations network. The original business plan grew the fleet to four aircraft by 2009, the new accelerated plan grows the fleet to ten aircraft by 2010 and increases the number of destinations.”
Shareholders also approved the Board’s request to issue bonds in Kuwaiti Dinars or any other currency at the time it sees fit, ratified the financial auditor’s report for the financial period 2004/2005, and elected Suhail Homsy in place of the resigned Board Member Saleh Al Huwaidy.
Jazeera Airways is a Kuwait Public Shareholding Company established in 2004 with a capital of KD 10 million raised through one of the most successful IPOs in Kuwait's history, making it the only privately owned airline in the Middle East. Based on a low fare business model that maximizes across-the-board efficiency in operations, Jazeera Airways enables travelers to fly without a ticket and book through the web and SMS, giving travelers more independence, spon-taneity, and fares up to 50 per cent lower than the market.
According to Boodai, the airline’s unique business model enables it to maximize cost efficiency through electronically integrated operations and innovative booking and ticketing systems as well as operating a fleet of single type aircraft. Boodai stressed on the company’s strict safety policies – a commitment that led them to partner with Lufthansa Technik, a leading global aircraft maintenance company. Further, the airline only recruits pilots with a minimum of 5000 hours flight experience.
The airline, which made its first flight in October 2005, operates a fleet of new Airbus A320 aircraft and serves some of the most popular destinations for both business and leisure in the Middle East, North Africa, and the Indian Subcontinent.