By: Sade Williams/Business a.m.
Caverton Helicopters, a major air service provider to the oil industry in Nigeria, said its business outlook is more positive than before with the gradual return to normalcy after the ravaging effect of the novel coronavirus that gripped the world in 2020 and 2021.
The positive outlook is also particularly hinged on what the company described as “our strategic decision to diversify our revenue streams.”
The helicopter operator in a statement noted that it was not deniable that the global pandemic negatively impacted the operations of countries and companies in the last two years. It stressed that the oil and gas sector, Caverton Helicopters’ primary market, was particularly hit due to low demand occasioned by lockdowns across the globe.
“This affected the company’s operations as clients reduced flights, dropped contracted aircraft, and reduced rates. But despite this, the company always met its obligations to its staff and suppliers,” it stated.
Underlining its positive outlook, including its commitment to safety, capacity building and financial buoyancy, Caverton said it has built a 40,000 sqm training and Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul (MRO) facility, adding, “With spare parts from original equipment manufacturers, operating within an export free zone, and fitted with an EU regulator certified flight simulator, the facility is the first of its kind not just in Nigeria but in Africa.”
Caverton Helicopters was responding to a raft of recent allegations that had been made against it, but which were not palatable, and it said they are false.
The airline said it was usually not its style to blow its own trumpets, but stated: “We make bold to say that Caverton Helicopters’ commitment to safety in all facets of its operations is impeccable and unimpeachable,” adding that it remains financially stable despite the lingering impact of COVID-19 on the national and global operating environment.
On why some pilots left the company for another, it said the country and the industry operate a free-market economy whose cardinal principle is free entry and exit, including of labour, adding that it is within the constitutionally guaranteed rights of those who left the company to do so, as it is within the rights of others to come on board.
“As a matter of fact, the experienced hires by Caverton always come from other companies too, both within and outside the country. Creating a sensation out of some staff leaving one organisation for another organisation amounts to making a mountain out of a molehill. The relevant point is that Caverton always has the required number of well-trained, type-rated, and professional crew (pilots and engineers) from virtually all continents of the globe to meet the complex needs of its premium clients,” it said.
The company attributed the suspension of flights with one of its clients to the audit being carried out on it.
“It is also worth stating that regular audit review is not alien in a highly regulated sector like the oil and gas industry. The suspension of flights with one of our esteemed clients is to ensure such a review. It is a partial contract with the company. We are positive that we will return to normal operations once the audit is concluded,” the company explained.
Caverton Helicopters Limited is a subsidiary of Caverton Offshore Support Group Plc, a company that is quoted on the Nigeria Stock Exchange.
“We are therefore subject to well regulated and high ethical corporate governance standards on a continuous basis. We remain unwavering in our commitment to these standards and to delivering best-in-class service to our esteemed clients and lasting value to our other stakeholders,” it reassured.