Kuwait-based aviation services provider, National Aviation Services (NAS), has signed a strategic partnership agreement with Siginon Aviation Limited to acquire a 51-percent stake in the Nairobi-based aviation handling company.
The deal, which is worth around $40 million according to people close to the arrangement, gives NAS a foothold in Nairobi, a major hub in the African aviation industry.
Siginon Aviation is an operating subsidiary of Siginon Group Limited, an integrated end-to-end logistics and air cargo solutions provider with more than 30 years experience and operations in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. Siginon Group is controlled by the family of late Kenyan president Daniel Arap Moi.
Through the partnership, NAS is expected to build on its presence in Africa with two airports in Kenya – Nairobi and Eldoret. This will set the company on course to expand its global presence and expertise in airport services as an industry leader.
In addition, the acquisition will put the Kuwait-based aviation company in a position to leverage Siginon Aviation’s deep operating experience in East Africa as it moves to strengthen its ground handling, ramp handling and cargo handling capabilities in the region.
Hassan El-Houry, CEO of NAS, said the partnership arrangement aligns with the need to grow and expand, as demand in the aviation service industry continues to grow.
“During the pandemic, our cargo services came to the forefront by keeping crucial supply chains flowing uninterrupted. In line with the growing demand across the world, we expanded our focus on cargo management in Africa and the partnership with Siginon Aviation is indeed timely,” El-Houry said.
Siginon Group Managing Director Meshack Kipturgo said the partnership is a reflection of the company’s ambition to make a positive mark in service excellence and extend its footprint in Kenya and beyond as it continues to tap into opportunities in the cargo and aviation sector.
NAS is an aviation services provider that manages more than 50 airport lounges in Africa, the Middle East and South Asia. It operates as a subsidiary of Kuwait-based logistics giant, Agility.
Despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 crisis, NAS outlined a plan to invest $50 million in the African aviation sector. In this vein, the company has been able to launch operations in 14 airports across South Africa, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea Bissau and Zambia.
The management of the Kuwait-based giant noted that the Siginon Aviation acquisition is an excellent addition to NAS’s growing network in Africa and strengthens its presence as the region’s largest ground handler.
Agility reported a 503.7-percent growth in net profit to KD38.6 million ($128.2million) for Q2 2020. Meanwhile, its profit in the first half of 2021 surged by 215.9 percent to KD51.2 million ($170.1 million).