krimson marks handling of 150th flight since ops began in 2015

February 21, 2019

Krimson Aviation, the Ethiopia-based trip planning and flight support company marked the handling of its 150th flight  since inception in February. The company based at Addis Ababa Bole International airport (HAAB) welcomed a flight from Angola-based aviation services company Bestfly, for its 150th milestone. The Bombardier Global Express, which is one of 17 managed aircraft including two helicopters, in the Bestfly fleet, landed in to Addis Ababa on the 5th February. A regular Krimson client, the Bestfly crew required landing permits, fuelling, crew hotel accommodation and ground transportation.

The handling of its 150th flight demonstrates the exceptional growth Krimson has experienced, from managing 15 flights in its first two years to reaching its 150th flight this month. It also reflects the rapid growth of the African aviation business aviation sector. Dawit Lemma, Founder and Managing Director, attributes the rise in activity to a number of factors. An increase in clients from international handling companies which recognise the value of using a local company that understands regulatory, cultural and business nuances. The ability to meet international expectations within the local environment making flight operations more efficient and giving passengers and crews a better Ethiopian experience, and an expansion in locations served.

The business began handling requests solely for Addis Ababa Bole airport but in 2018 started serving all major points of entry in and out of Ethiopia including Bahir Dar Airport, (HABD), Dire Dawa Airport, (HADR), and Mekelle Airport, (HAMK). Trip planning and flight handing for flights originating or departing from a number of smaller Ethiopian airports,  including Arba Minch, (HAAM), Dessie (HADC), and Gondar (HAGN), airports strengthened its position. Business growth has also been fuelled by expansion beyond Ethiopia as Krimson now regularly supports flight operations in Djibouti, Eritrea, South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  A strong financial structure, and a good commercial reputation continue to provide solid foundations for further organic business growth.

“I’m proud what we’ve achieved, but I’m even more proud of our culture of service,” said Switzerland-originating Lemma. “We’ve introduced Swiss efficiency to the Ethiopian landscape which gives our clients real confidence and enables us to manage even the most complex of challenges. One that really sticks in my mind is a medical evacuation out of Gondar. It required significant coordination with multiple authorities, the medevac operator and a local air ambulance service. We used both our flight support and charter brokerage services in the same operation, and the passenger was able to receive the medical attention she needed. We also established precedents now used by all operators and agencies when faced with similar circumstances.”

Lemma identifies the biggest operational challenge as obtaining clearances for aircraft landing outside of HAAB, especially when it is a non-point of entry. These clearances require a significant amount of documentation to be submitted to the Civil Aviation Authority and the Ministry of Defense. By establishing trust with both, Krimson has reduced the time to obtain the clearances and built a customer base which values access to the permits. 

“We have managed to show all of them that we are a company that operates ethically, and follows the right guidelines and laws,” he says.  Looking forward, Krimson is on a trajectory to manage 200 flights and obtain 300 permits in 2019 alone as the business continues to offer full flight support, ground handling, charter brokerage and other aviation services within Ethiopia and East Africa.