AirZim needs rightsizing: CEO
THERE is need to right size the national airline, Air Zimbabwe, to expedite its turnaround and to enhance its chances of landing a technical partner, the airline’s Chief Executive Officer, Captain Ripton Muzenda, has said.
Speaking on the sidelines of the African Airlines Association Annual General Assembly, Captain Muzenda said that the current structure does not match the business being generated by the airline.
“We are operating with a structure that is designed for a bigger airline and we need to adjust the business to match current operations,” he said.
He said that this was particularly important if the airline is to entertain any hope of finding a suitor.
“We need to make ourselves attractive before we want to engage any suitors,” he said.
Capt Muzenda said that they are currently in talks with different airlines.
“We are talking to a number of airlines but for them to come in we need to rightsize,” he said.
Air Zimbabwe has been scouting for a technical partner to help it recapitalise and boost the business.
The airline requires new aircraft to help it service local regional and international routes as the current equipment is now old and no longer economical to operate on the current destinations.
Air Zimbabwe has been using its 767 and 737 aircraft to service local routes which are not compatible with the numbers on the routes.
Government has been actively assisting the airline to secure a strategic partner and has already taken over the airline’s debt as well as approved the engagement of possible partners.
In a speech read on his behalf by Deputy Minister Michael Madanha, Transport and Infrastructure Development Minister Dr Joram Gumbo said that Government was doing all it can to help the airline’s turnaround.
“As Government were are supporting the national airline within the limits of the resources available to us so that it continues to play a strategic role.
“In pursuit of this goal, the Government of Zimbabwe approved the engagement of a strategic partner in an effort to recapitalise Air Zimbabwe and the process is now underway,” he said.