|Aicha Ouidi Baba Moussa, Head of Commercial (M) with some staff|
Air Cote D’Ivoire (HF) recently held a partnership building and business strategy sensitization workshop with leading Travel Agents in the country. The event held at the Silverbird Galleria, Victoria Island, Lagos. It provided a forum for travel partners to gain closer insight into the airline’s growth strategy for the Nigerian market as well as showcase its vast network of connections to major cities in West and Central Africa. The airline’s Head of Commercial, Mrs. Aicha Ouidi Baba Moussa was on hand to offer solutions to agents’ concerns as well as provide answers to their questions regarding the business.
The Country Manager, Nigeria, Mr. Moustapha Fofana, opened the discussions with a presentation that outlined the vision, goals and business model of the carrier with particular reference on how travel agents can partner with the carrier to grow its market share in the country. “We are a regional carrier with a strong focus on business travel and a commitment to make travel within West and Central Africa a seamless and stress free experience,” he said, adding that: “Air Cote D’Ivoire currently flies to nineteen destinations within the region with its hub in Abidjan.”
Speaking further, Mr. Fofana noted that the Nigerian market is very important for Air Cote D’Ivoire in the light of its performance since operations began into Lagos in January this year. “The company commenced operations three years ago and we believe this is the right time to be in the Nigerian market. Our connections allow corporate organisations and business travellers to connect major cities in West and Central Africa in the shortest possible time with four weekly flights out of Lagos to Abidjan on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday and three times weekly to Kinshasa on Monday, Thursday and Saturday using an A319 except on Wednesdays.”
|Mr. Moustapha Fofana, Country Manager.|
The airline prides itself on offering customers personalised services, comfortable and spacious Business Class seats, power outlets in every Business Class seat and two for every three Economy Class seat; Individual Headphones in all classes as well as several other value added benefits through its Frequent Flyer Programme known as “SMILE.” In the area of safety, Mr. Fofana stressed that Air France is the airline’s technical partner both as an investor and in the area of aircraft maintenance. “We have regular safety checks on all our aircraft three times a year; notably every Friday, half yearly in Casablanca and yearly in Toulouse, France.”
Head of Commercial, Aicha Ouidi Baba Moussa stressed that the airline’s philosophy is that Travel Agents are partners of the carrier whose activities go a long way in helping the company achieve its goals, hence the need to organise the forum. She noted that travel partners who have various ideas on how to arrange group visits as well as packaged tours to Abidjan can approach the airline who will be happy to partner with them in that regard. She added that the airline’s commission rate is 6% but that there could be other arrangements reached in partnership with agents.
Air Cote d’Ivoire is the national carrier of Cote d’Ivoire with a workforce of 437 employees including 58 Pilots, 116 Cabin Crew and 30 Aircraft Engineers operating a young fleet of six aircraft comprising three A319s, one A320 and two Dash 8-Q400s. The carrier also plans to acquire six more aircraft before the end of year 2105 which will bring its fleet size to a total of twelve.