By: Sade Williams/Business a.m.
Premium air passenger service provider, Nigeria’s Xejet Aviation, is deploying its newly leased Embraer ERJ145 aircraft, which it took delivery of recently from ACIA Aero Leasing (ACIA), to its business class passengers.
ACIA, a leading provider of regional aircraft leasing and lease management services, in a statement disclosed what it said was the delivery of “a single Embraer ERJ145 on lease to Xejet Aviation (“Xejet”), a fast-growing, start-up airline based in Lagos, Nigeria.”
The aircraft, ACIA Aero said, is to support the Business Class Only carrier’s vision to be Nigeria’s go-to airline for smart and cost-effective premium air travel.
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The airline recently received its Air Operator Certificate (AOC) from the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) to commence premium services soon. The aircraft with registration number 5N-BZN has since arrived at the Murtala Muhammed Airport Lagos.
The regional jet, configured with 50 seats in a single-class layout, joins the carrier’s fleet that currently consists of one additional ERJ145 alongside a Boeing B737-500. The ERJ145 will support the airline’s growth strategy by operating charter and non-scheduled flights in Nigeria’s underserved domestic markets, which it commenced in the first week of March.
“We are thrilled to welcome Xejet as a new airline to ACIA’s expanding customer family and look forward to our ongoing collaboration to leverage market opportunities for the airline’s continued growth,” said Elze Le Roux, senior vice president, leasing & customer relations, ACIA Aero Leasing.
“Xejet has developed a market niche that will serve them well in executing on the vision to become an airline of choice for the premium air travel segment in the country,” he added.
Emmanuel Iza, Xejet’s chief executive officer, emphasised that, “ACIA is a strong leasing partner that understands Africa and offers a diverse portfolio of aircraft. Our focus as an operator is to be cost-effective and efficient, which is why we chose to work with ACIA. We are very happy with their market knowledge and corresponding flexibility as a new lessor to our operation. The ACIA team has been very supportive of our needs, and we look forward to leasing more aircraft from them in the future.”
“We are excited to continue expanding ACIA’s presence in our core focus market of Nigeria, supporting the growth of airline operators like Xejet,” said Mick Mooney, ACIA Aero Leasing’s chief executive officer.
“We see the Nigerian market offering strong opportunities in the near term and we are well-placed to support the development of domestic and regional airline operators. The ERJ145 remains in high demand and offers proven operational advantages that can advance the airlines’ vital efforts to support economic activity through air travel,” he added.