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SAA briefing to Parliament cancelled after political parties clash

By: African News Agency      16th May 2018 A briefing by South African Airways (SAA) to Parliament's finance committee was called off on Wednesday after MPs from the ruling African National Congress (ANC) and the Democratic Alliance (DA) clashed on whether the meeting should be closed to the public. Acting finance committee chairperson... 

Solidarity union to continue with SAA business rescue plan despite latest bailout 

By: Rebecca Campbell     11th May 2018 The Solidarity trade union will continue with its court application to place State-owned flag carrier South African Airways (SAA) under business rescue, despite another government bailout for the airline, the union announced on Friday. This follows a statement on Thursday by SAA CEO Vuyani Jarana... 

SAA to get R5bn capital injection after plea for cash – CEO

By: Reuters     11th May 2018 South Africa has promised another R5-billion ($400-million) capital injection to help its struggling state airline meet urgent financial obligations, the CEO of South African Airways (SAA) said on Thursday. SAA has not generated a profit since 2011 and has already received State guarantees... 

It’s déjà vu all over again

By: Riaan de Lange     11th May 2018 “Do you ever have déjà vu, Mrs Lancaster?” “I don’t think so, but I could check with the kitchen.”, is Mrs. Lancaster’s sincere response to, essentially a sarcastic enquiry from Phil Connors, in the Groundhog Day. Groundhog Day is a situation in which a series of unwelcome or tedious events... 

Union urges Parliament to debate SAA

By: Rebecca Campbell     8th May 2018 Trade union Solidarity on Tuesday petitioned Parliament to hold a debate in the House of Assembly on the State-owned flag-carrier airline, South African Airways (SAA). The union also urged the Government to support Solidarity’s application to place the airline under business rescue and to stop... 

Jonas, Tshabalala join MTN board

By: Natasha Odendaal     7th May 2018 Former Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas and consulting and investment holding company Barbican Advisory Group executive director Bajabulile Tshabalala will join the board of telecommunications heavyweight MTN as nonexecutive directors, effective June 1. Tshabalala and Jonas bring extensive... 

Unions at odds over SAA business rescue

By: Rebecca Campbell     27th April 2018 Trade union Solidarity believes that business rescue is the only way that jobs can be saved at embattled State-owned national flag-carrier South African Airways (SAA) and the company put back on a sustainable footing. This was made clear at the media briefing at the union's head office on... 

Fighting chance

By: Terence Creamer     27th April 2018 The new, credible boards appointed at South Africa’s largest and most troubled State-owned companies (SoCs) – Denel, Eskom, Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa and South African Airways – must be given every opportunity to succeed. If they fail, the consequences for the country’s fiscal... 

South African Airways says it needs capital injection 'now' 

By: Reuters     24th April 2018 South African Airways (SAA) needs a new capital injection "now" to stay afloat and is in discussions with banks and the National Treasury for "an open credit line", its chief executive said on Tuesday. State-owned SAA, which has not generated a profit since 2011, is regularly cited by ratings... 

SAA awarded 4-Star Skytrax ranking for 16th consecutive year

By: Marleny Arnoldi     17th April 2018 South African Airways (SAA) has maintained a 4-Star Skytrax ranking, in both business and economy class, for a sixteenth consecutive year.  

These are my principles, but . . .

By: Riaan de Lange     13th April 2018 My father’s friend is a principled man. In the past, you would have read much into my opening sentence. Only a few days ago, my young son returned from school with a letter. A dreaded letter. In this day and age, any written correspondence received from school on a paper is never a good thing.... 

SAA must look to Ethiopian Airlines

By: Martin Zhuwakinyu     13th April 2018 Late last month, the top brass at South African Airways (SAA) was in the National Assembly, briefing Parliamentarians about the perennial ills at the national carrier. New CEO Vuyani Jarana, who, together with board chairperson Johannes Magwaza, led the delegation, painted a rather depressing... 

State-owned model leaves commercial airlines struggling to compete

By: Marleny Arnoldi     12th April 2018 South Africa has missed out on opportunities in key air travel markets, owing to its reliance on a dominant national carrier and State-owned airports, an executive of privately-owned Lanseria International Airport, north of Johannesburg, said on Thursday. Lanseria operations deputy executive... 

SAA fills critical skills gap with key appointments

By: Anine Kilian     12th April 2018 South African Airways (SAA) has announced key appointments to fill the critical skills gap at the airline as it forges ahead with implementing a turnaround plan. Pumla Luhabe was appointed chief commercial officer, Bob Head CFO, Hendus Venter CIO, Mpati Amelia acting chief legal officer and... 

Trade union Solidarity believes business rescue essential to save SAA; other unions strongly disagree

By: Rebecca Campbell     12th April 2018 Trade union Solidarity believes that business rescue is the only way that jobs can be saved at embattled State-owned national flag-carrier South African Airways (SAA) and the company put back on a sustainable footing. This was made clear at the media briefing at the union's head office on... 

Trade union to seek to put SAA into business rescue

By: Rebecca Campbell     9th April 2018 Trade union Solidarity announced on Sunday that it was to start court proceedings to place State-owned and financially very troubled national carrier South African Airways (SAA) under business rescue. In an open letter to President Cyril Ramaphosa, Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene and Public... 

SoE governance, operating models under the spotlight 

4th April 2018 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the shift in conversation away from only focusing on governance problems at State-owned enterprises (SoEs) to also include discussions on the operating models of these entities and particularly for Eskom and... 

Rose Heathcote

30th March 2018 This week we feature Rose Heathcote, CEO of Lean Institute Africa, a a not-for-profit organisation advancing lean thinking and practice in Africa   

Oversight structure set up to monitor implementation of SAA’s latest turnaround plan

By: Terence Creamer     29th March 2018 A formal oversight structure, involving the National Treasury, as well as executive and nonexecutive directors from South African Airways (SAA), has been established to monitor the implementation of a “revalidated” turnaround strategy at the lossmaking and heavily indebted national carrier.... 

Lowering SoE risk to fiscus requires governance and business-model reform - S&P

By: Terence Creamer     27th March 2018 The risk posed to government’s fiscal position as a result of contingent liabilities linked to South Africa’s State-owned enterprises (SoEs) will be only partly alleviated by governance reforms, S&P Global Ratings warns, arguing that greater attention will also have to be given to reforming SoE... 

SAA losses mount for 2017 

By: African News Agency      27th March 2018 National carrier South African Airways made a further financial loss of R3.7-billion over the nine months to the end of 2017, as revenue dipped about R1-billion below its forecasts for that period. The figures were tabled in a briefing by SAA CEO Vuyani Jarana, chairman JB Magwaza and executives... 

Roadblocks ahead for South Africa's Ramaphosa after Moody's win

By: Reuters     27th March 2018 South Africa's new President Cyril Ramaphosa will need to call on all his dealmaking skills to overhaul ailing State-owned firms and tackle land reform if he wants to capitalise on Moody's decision not to downgrade the country's debt to junk. Moody's said its decision to keep South Africa's... 

South Africa mulling privatisation in Ramaphosa reform drive – Treasury chief

By: Reuters     26th March 2018 South Africa will consider partially privatising struggling State-owned companies as part of wide-ranging reforms set in motion by President Cyril Ramaphosa since he came to power last month, the head of the National Treasury said on Saturday. Dondo Mogajane said South Africa was at the end of a... 

Moody's announcement signals positive sentiment, says Busa

By: African News Agency      26th March 2018 The decision by Moody’s Investors Service to retain South Africa’s international and domestic credit rating at investment grade and the change in outlook to stable is a mark of greater confidence in the country, Business Unity South Africa (Busa) said on Saturday. On Friday night, Moody's said it... 

Aerosud Aviation warns of tough times for the South African aerospace industry

By: Rebecca Campbell     16th March 2018 South Africa’s largest private-sector commercial aviation aerostructures manufacturing company, Aerosud Aviation (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Aerosud Holdings), warns that the local aerospace industry is going through tough times and is not receiving the kind of support that competitors in other... 

SAA suspends CFO over disciplinary process

By: Reuters     14th March 2018 State-owned airline South African Airways (SAA) has suspended indefinitely two officials including its chief financial officer, its spokesperson said on Tuesday, over a disciplinary process at the loss-making airline. CFO Phumeza Nhantsi and the head of the airline's technical unit Musa Zwane... 

Jarana defends SAA’s poor performance, lack of turnaround

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     13th March 2018 State-owned South African Airways (SAA) on Tuesday said it was again taking “urgent steps” to address issues raised by the Auditor-General’s (AG’s) office in its 2016/17 audit report, which was released last week. “The AG has given us a comprehensive diagnosis into key areas of our business and... 

Gigaba to appear before Eskom inquiry on Tuesday

By: African News Agency      12th March 2018 Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba has confirmed that he will appear before the parliamentary inquiry into Eskom on Tuesday, the same day in which the Gupta brothers and former South African Airways chairperson Dudu Myeni have been called to testify. Zukiswa Rantho, who is chairing the inquiry,... 

Reality bites

By: Terence Creamer     2nd March 2018 Necessity, it is said, is the mother of invention. However, in the case of South Africa’s embattled State-owned companies (SOCs), necessity is undoubtedly also the mother of pragmatism. In his response to the debate on his State of the Nation Address, President Cyril Ramaphosa struck a pragmatic... 

Dudu Myeni a no show at Eskom inquiry

By: African News Agency      28th February 2018 Former South African Airways chairperson Dudu Myeni, who has been named in the inquiry as being one of the people who interferred in the affairs of Eskom, was a no show at a parliamentary inquiry on Wednesday. Myeni, a close ally of former president Jacob Zuma, was meant to testify at the inquiry... 

Competition Commission prohibits Airlink-Safair merger, companies to challenge ruling

By: African News Agency      23rd February 2018 The Competition Commission on Friday said that it prohibited the proposed merger between SA Airlink and Safair Operations because the transaction was likely to result in a substantial prevention of competition. SA Airlink is the largest independent regional airline in southern Africa and operates... 

Land and asset sales on cards as government seeks revenue-neutral support for State firms

By: Terence Creamer     21st February 2018 Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba used his maiden Budget to reinforce President Cyril Ramaphosa’s recent announcement that stakes in cash-strapped State-owned companies (SoCs) could be sold to reduce their reliance on bail-outs and debt. Ramaphosa made the announcement in his response to the debate... 

National carrier makes changes on Johannesburg/London route

By: Rebecca Campbell     2nd February 2018 South African Airways (SAA) announced on Thursday that it was assigning its new Airbus A330-300 wide-body airliners to its Johannesburg/London route, with effect from March 25. It also announced that it was cutting the daily frequency of its flights between Johannesburg and London to one, from... 

South African mining seen a winner as Ramaphosa woos investors

By: Reuters     26th January 2018 South Africa's embattled mining industry could be first in line to benefit from a boost in foreign direct investment (FDI) if the new leader of the ruling party Cyril Ramaphosa implements measures seen as vital to draw in more cash, analysts said. The governing African National Congress (ANC)... 

Editorial: Eskom requires surgery not a Band-Aid

By: Terence Creamer     18th January 2018 Eskom’s debt refinancing is undoubtedly a critical burning platform. The clock is most definitely ticking and the consequences of not closing the immediate financial chasm will be dire not only for the utility, but also for citizens. That said, government is extremely unlikely to allow Eskom to... 

SAA, TAAG sign code-share agreement

By: Schalk Burger     10th January 2018 State-owned airline South African Airways (SAA) and Angola State-owned airline TAAG Angola Airlines on Wednesday announced a code-share agreement for flights between Luanda and Cape Town or Johannesburg. “SAA will code-share with TAAG on direct services between Johannesburg and Luanda and between... 

Calls made for far-reaching Eskom restructuring as sustainability risks mount

By: Terence Creamer     9th January 2018 Eskom’s current financial situation makes it difficult to see any other path to sustainability than that of drastic cost-cutting, restructuring and bringing private equity into the business, Energy Intensive Users Group of Southern Africa (EIUG) past chairperson Piet van Staden argues. In an... 

South African Airways denies procuring bottled water, fuel at premium

By: African News Agency      29th December 2017 Cash-strapped national carrier South African Airways on Thursday rejected as false reports that it was paying more for its bottled water and fuel than the market price. “We took note of comments on social media platforms suggesting that we procure at premium commodities such as bottled water and... 

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