Routes Africa 2019

The route development forum for Africa

Mombasa, Kenya
8 - 10 December 2019

Conference Programme Speakers

Sanjeev Gadhia

Vice Chairman of TIACA, Vice Chairman of AFRAA Cargo committee and CEO, Astral Aviation Limited

Sanjeev S Gadhia is Vice Chairman of TIACA (The International Air Cargo Association); Vice Chairman of AFRAA Cargo committee and CEO of Astral Aviation.

Astral Aviation Ltd is a dedicated all- cargo airline based in Nairobi, Kenya and operates a fleet of seven cargo aircrafts into Europe and within Africa.

Operating one of the most successful airlines in Africa for 20 years, Sanjeev is responsible for the overall management, network planning and fleet acquisition for Astral Aviation, along with its Pan African expansion strategy, which entails two new cargo hubs in West and Southern Africa, including diversification into Logistics, Airport Infrastructure, Executive Jets and Unmanned Cargo Aircrafts.

Sanjeev is rated as a “New Generation Leader for Africa” by the prestigious African Leadership Network, while Astral has been rated as the best all-cargo carrier in Africa in 2011, 2013, 2015, 2017 and 2019.

In 2017, Astral Aerial (UAV/Drone subsidiary of Astral Aviation) won the prestigious ‘IATA Cargo Innovation Award for its UTM’ (UAV Traffic Management) innovation for Africa.

In 2019, Astral Aerial was rated as ‘Africa’s Top 10 Tech Startups’ and selected by Airbus to participate in Bizlab #Africa4Future accelerator programme.

In April 2019, Astral Aerial was recognized by World Bank as the Winner – Data Analytics of its Disruptive Agricultural Technology challenge

In 2016, Sanjeev was appointed Vice Chairman of AFRAA’s (African Airlines Association) Cargo Committee based on his extensive experience in the air-cargo sector in Africa.

In 2017, Sanjeev became the first Director from Africa to sit on TIACA (The International Air Cargo Association) and is currently Vice Chairman of TIACA.

A banker by profession, Sanjeev has a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the Schiller International University in London, in addition to being a member of EO Kenya (Entrepreneurs Organization) and YPO (Young Professional’s Organization) Africa Great Lakes.

Sanjeev is a Kenyan citizen and is married with 2 children.

Participating Talks and Sessions

Otunba Dr. O. Peter Obafemi

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, The Great Eagle Airways

Tony Griffin

Senior Vice President Consulting, ASM

Tony is one of ASM’s most experienced consultants with nearly 30 years’ experience in the aviation industry, developing routes at Manchester Airport for 13 years before joining ASM in 2000. He oversees the management of ASM’s clients and leads the training portfolio.

Participating Talks and Sessions

Aidan Mooney

Vice President Consulting, ASM

Aidan has worked in the aviation industry for over 25 years and was previously the director of aviation development at Manchester Airports Group. He has negotiated with airlines from around the globe and is a well-known figure in the aviation industry. Aidan has extensive experience in forecasting, budget planning and management reporting.

Participating Talks and Sessions

Allan Kilavuka

Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Jambojet

Mr. Allan Kilavuka is the Managing Director and CEO at Jambojet Ltd. He has a Bachelor’s of Commerce Degree from the University of Nairobi and holds a Postgraduate Certificate in Psychology from the University of Liverpool. He has trained at GE’s world class Crotonville Leadership Institute in New York, USA in Executive Leadership, Advanced Management and Financial Management. With over 23 years’ experience in leadership and management and an extensive knowledge and experience in the Africa business environment, he has proven success in new organization set ups, change management, financial planning, integrations, process improvement and company compliance and responsible strategic leadership.   

Participating Talks and Sessions

Alain St. Ange

Former Minister Tourism & Culture, Seychelles

Alain St.Ange is the founder of the "Saint Ange Consultancy" and remains its main Tourism Consultant. He is also responsible for the weekly "Saint Ange Tourism Report" that is reposted on most of the important tourism news wire right across the world.

Alain St.Ange is the former Seychelles Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports & Marine and before that the island's Minister for Tourism and Culture. He was First President of the Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands and was also the former Seychelles Candidate for the position of Secretary-General of the UNWTO. He is today the President of the Seychelles Labor Union (SLU), Deputy Secretary General of FORSEAA (Forum of Small Medium Economic AFRICA ASEAN) based in Jakarta Indonesia, listed as a Consultant for TMN (Travel Marketing Network) in New York USA, Co-Chair of the SUNx (Strong Universal Network) Organisation in London UK, Vice President & Founding Member of ICTP (International Coalition of Tourism Partners).

Alain St. Ange studied Hotel Management in Germany and Tourism Administration in France. He has been involved in the industry's private sector trade in hotels and restaurants in Germany, the Channel Islands, Australia and in the Seychelles before joining the Tourism Board of Seychelles as Marketing Director and CEO.

He was instrumental in the successful hosting Routes Africa edition in Seychelles.

Participating Talks and Sessions

Raphael Kuuchi

Vice President, Africa, IATA

Raphael Kuuchi is the IATA Vice President for Africa. He has many years’ experience in air transport management, operations and consulting. After working with an airline for 13 years, he joined the Nairobi-based African Airlines Association (AFRAA) in 2005, as Commercial Director and later as Director Commercial, Corporate and Industry Affairs. In this capacity, Mr. Kuuchi initiated and oversaw many projects in airlines business development, commercial operations, IT and communication, liberalization/market access, aero-political/regulatory affairs and training across Africa.

Now as Vice President for Africa, Mr. Kuuchi is leading the IATA Africa team in providing support to the growth and development of aviation and working with stakeholders to ensure safe, reliable, competitive and environmentally sustainable aviation business in Africa. Top on his priority list are issues of safety and security, liberalization, reducing the high cost of operations, regulatory harmonization, capacity building and the environment.

Mr. Kuuchi holds an MBA from Henley Management College, UK and a B.Sc. degree in Business Administration. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (FCILT) UK.

Participating Talks and Sessions

David Casey

Senior Network Planning Editor, Routes

David is responsible for providing insight to the Routesonline community through the latest breaking news, as well as regular features and analysis on developments and trends within the sector. He previously spent 11 years as a business journalist, which included five as the editor of an award-winning digital news team.

Participating Talks and Sessions

Dilhan Haradasa

Group Head of Airport Partnerships and Incentives, AirAsia Group

Dilhan Haradasa is the current Group Head of Airport Partnerships and Incentives for the AirAsia/AirAsiaX Groups, where, he is responsible for Airport, aeronautical and stakeholder incentives. Prior to this, Dilhan held the role of Group Head of Network and Regulatory for AirAsia. 

Dilhan brings 18 years of diverse airline management experience ranging from three low-cost airlines (AirAsia, Virgin Australia and flydubai) and four legacy airlines (SriLankan, Emirates, Gulf Air & LOT Polish). Dilhan holds a Bachelor’s degree in Aviation with an elective major in Marketing & Management from the University of Western Sydney, Australia.

He has a strong knowledge across broad aviation disciplines and possess extensive Commercial management experience in Network/Schedules Planning, Airport Incentives, Sales & Marketing, new airline start-ups, and slot/bilateral negotiations.

Participating Talks and Sessions

Steven Small

Brand Director, Routes

An economic development and tourism specialist, Steven’s career has focussed on working with destinations supporting inward investment, tourism and economic development initiative.

Roles in inward investment, specifically site selection, and project management led Stevento the Northwest Regional Development Agency, where he developeda grant to help support regional airport’s route development strategies.

As a consultant at Ernst and Young, Steven worked on a number of projects for both private and public sectororganisations, including supporting the development of the business plan for Bath City Council. Back in Manchesterhe joined the city’s inward investment agency, MIDAS, helping attractbusinesses to the city.

From here, he moved to Marketing Manchester workingon a variety of projects including funding packages for Manchester Central –the city’s main convention venue and thenew National Football Museum,as well as delivering the route development fund for Manchester Airport. Steven then took on the role of Head of Business Tourismfor Visit Manchester, working to attract major new events and conferences to the city.

Steven moved back to his home town of Liverpool as Head of Tourism, working with public and private stakeholders to develop a long term strategy to maximise the explosion of the visitor economy, since the European Capital of Culture in 2008, and ensurethe city region continues to improve its offer and grow sustainably.

A move to UBM in February 2017 brought Steven back to route development. As Brand Director, Steven leads a team in the development and delivery of Routes -a portfolio of global events providing a platform for the route development community to negotiate new air services.

A father of two, Steven is a supporter of Everton football club and lives in a village in North Cheshire.

Michal Novak

Marketing Director for EMEA & Central Asia, Embraer

Michal Nowak joined Embraer in 2018 as a Marketing Director for EMEA & Central Asia. He is responsible for Embraer’s product and brand positioning as well as support to the strategic sales campaigns across the region. Before joining Embraer, Michal worked for LOT Polish Airlines as Executive Director Strategy and Innovation, supporting carrier’s restructuring plan and subsequent growth strategy that turned it into the fastest growing network airline in Europe. Michal has also extensive consulting experience, working for and with Boston Consulting Group for several years. Michal graduated law from Warsaw University and Universita di Catania.

Participating Talks and Sessions

Wesley Charnock

Editor-in-Chief, Routes

An experienced journalist and specialist in content production and marketing, Wesley joined Routes following a decade-long career within some of the biggest events media and digital publications in the UK.

Wesley graduated in 2002 from the University of Manchester and spent several years working for digital marketing agencies, where he wrote for a broad spectrum of global commercial clients including Vodafone, the London Stock Exchange and major UK banks.

Moving into publishing, Wesley worked as the editor of trade magazines before moving to a specialist digital role at business publishing and events group Insider Media, which stages more than 100 conferences and awards annually.

At Insider Wesley was responsible for managing the delivery of more than 120 news stories every day to millions of readers. 

In his current position, Wesley oversees all live and digital content within Routes, also playing a strategic role within the business.

Participating Talks and Sessions

Alex Avedi

Chief Executive Officer, Safarilink Aviation

Alex Avedi has over 15 years of senior management experience in the Aviation Industry and is the Chief Executive Officer of Safarilink Aviation, Kenya’s premier Safari airline that flies to over 18 destinations in Kenya and Tanzania.

He was previously the Director, Corporate Quality, Safety and Security at Kenya Airways and General Manager, Operations and Safety at Kenya Airports Authority.  

He holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons) degree from the University of Nairobi and a Post Graduate Diploma with Distinction in Advanced Aviation Studies (DAS) from the University of Geneva.

He is also a graduate of the Aviation Safety and Security program from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, holder of IATA safety and Security Diplomas and is a licensed commercial pilot and gazetted Air Accident Investigator by the Republic of Kenya.

He has attended Leadership Development Programs at Cambridge University, General Electric and Gordon Institute of Business Science of the University of Pretoria.

Participating Talks and Sessions

Waleed M. Sabra

Manager, Route Economics Department, EGYPTAIR Airlines Co.

Waleed has more than 20 years’ experience in different roles at EGYPTAIR, he started his carreer with EGYPTAIR started as sales agent 1999-2007, then he worked in pricing 2007-2013 where he attended many events with IATA& ATPCO, was the pricing manager 2013-2015, then country manager Morocco 2015-2017.

Waleed decided to explore new area “Network planning” so he joined route economics department in 2017, started as a specialist and became a manager for route economics department in April 2019.

Participating Talks and Sessions

Capt Amir K Gaya

Corporate Strategist, CEO Office, Arik Air

Participating Talks and Sessions

Paul van den Brink

Air Access Project Manager Cape Town, Wesgro

Paul studied Economics & Marketing at the University of Eindhoven in the Netherlands where he graduated in 1995. In 1996 he moved for the first time to South Africa, where he worked for the South African Netherlands Chamber of Commerce (SANEC) in Johannesburg to promote the bi-lateral trade relations. He joined as Project Manager and was promoted to General Manager in 1998.

In 2001, Paul returned to the Netherlands and started his career in the airport and aviation industry. He worked for the Schiphol Area Development Company (SADC) in Amsterdam as International Marketing Director until 2013. He was responsible for the international marketing strategy of one of Europe’s leading airport regions with its airport city and aerotropolis model and assisted in improving Amsterdam’s air network for both passengers as well as cargo.

At the end of 2013, Paul moved to Cape Town to work on projects for the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs. Since 2015 he is also Project Manager for Cape Town Air Access.

Cape Town Air Access is a public private partnership based at Wesgro. Its key objective is to improve the global air network into Cape Town International Airport. Since its inception in 2015, it has succeeded in assisting to land 16 new routes and 22 route expansions, adding over 800,000 one-way seats into the airport.

 

Participating Talks and Sessions

Alex Gitari

Ag. Managing Director / CEO, Kenya Airports Authority

Mr. Alex Gitari is the Ag. Managing Director/CEO for Kenya Airports Authority, prior to his appointment, Mr. Gitari was the authority’s General Manager, Finance. 

He is a career professional with wealth of experience, which covers a broad range of functions including development banking, accounting and financial management, treasury management, resource mobilization, business development and marketing, project appraisal, strategy formulation and execution, policy formulation, risk management and management of strategic partnerships.

In addition to an MBA in Finance and a Bachelor of Commerce (accounting option) degree from the University of Nairobi, Mr. Gitari is a qualified Certified Public Accountant as well as an alumnus of the Harvard Business School's Advanced Management Program. He has worked internationally and in multi-cultural environments and fully appreciates the benefits as well as the challenges of managing diversity.

Participating Talks and Sessions

Aaron Munetsi

Director, Governance, Legal And Industry Affairs, AFRAA

Aaron Munetsi is the Director – Government, Legal and Industry Affairs at   The African Airlines Association (AFRAA) with responsibility for (all matters government related, the regulatory framework and industry affairs which covers a wide spectrum of the aviation landscape.

Prior to joining AFRAA, Aaron worked at South African Airways as the Regional General Manager for Africa and Middle East in the Commercial division. In total Aaron was with South African Airways for over 25 years and served in various countries in Africa. He occupied positions such as Country Manager, Regional Manager, Executive Manager and also served as the Acing Chief Commercial Officer. Notable is his vast experience on the African continent where he was instrumental in establishing South African Airways operations and spearheaded multilateral as well as bilateral agreements that enabled South African Airways to grow and enhance its footprint.

Aaron is a committed son of the soil who believes that the best knowledge one can ever get is to spend time in the trenches. With various qualifications and exposure over the years he believes that it is only logical that he gives back to the continent by doing his best to enhance the work of AFRAA that will make aviation in Africa a major contributor to the development and advancement of the continent.

 

Participating Talks and Sessions

Hassan Ali Joho

First Governor, Mombasa County

His Excellency Hassan Ali Joho is the first governor of Mombasa County, serving his second five-year term after successfully defending his seat in the 2017 general elections. Prior to his election to governorship, he served as Member of Parliament for Kisauni Constituency between 2007 and 2013.

He has served as an Assistant Minister for Transport in the National Government and in the National Assembly as Deputy Chairman of the Foreign, Defence & Election Committee as well as Library Committee Member of Transport, Housing & Public Works.

 He is the current Deputy Party Leader of the Orange Democratic Movement of Kenya (ODM). a party on whose platform he has been elected since 2007. Governor Joho is the Chair of the Global Strong Cities Steering Committee Working Group on Communications and Counter Narratives, a Co- President of the 21st Century Maritime Cooperation Committee on Trade and Investments of Cities and Local Governments of Asia-Pacific, Southeast, South Asia and Africa.

 Governor Joho is also the Founder and Patron of Hassan Joho Foundation, a non-profit making organization that seeks to lift up the lives of the poor and needy.

 Born in Kisauni, Mombasa, Governor Joho holds a B.A in Business and Human Resource Management from Kampala University and diploma in business, shipping, logistics and ICT. In his free time, the governor enjoys traveling and socializing through various sporting activities including golf, soccer and swimming.

 

James Macharia

Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure, Housing, Urban Development and Urban Works, Government of Kenya

Mr. James Macharia, EGH, is the Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure, Housing, Urban Development and Urban Works in Kenya. His mandate is to provide strategic leadership to ensure that the Ministry develops operates and sustains world class transport infrastructure and services in line with the Government’s vision.

Prior to this appointment Mr. Macharia was Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Health where he oversaw implementation of key strategic interventions including the introduction of free maternity services, universal health coverage and innovative health financing structures e.g. the upgrading of 98 health facilities under the Managed Equipment Services concept.

Prior to joining government, Mr. Macharia had undertaken various leadership roles in the financial and banking industries, including the appointment as Group Managing Director of a listed banking institution. He has a diverse and illustrious career covering all major tenets of corporate management. This includes, inter alia, corporate finance, audit and tax consultancy in London (6 years), corporate and merchant banking, financial management, strategic planning and development, personnel and general administration.

Mr. Macharia is a Chartered Accountant with the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, Certified Public Accountant with Institute of Certified Public Accountants; he holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree and an MBA from Henley Management College, UK.

Najib Balala

Cabinet Secretary for Tourism & Wildlife, Government of Kenya

Honorable Najib Balala, EGH, was born in 1967 and is trained in International Urban Management at the University of Toronto, Canada. He underwent the Executive Program for Leaders in Development at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

CS Balala was in 2017 re-appointed as Cabinet Secretary for Tourism & Wildlife by H.E. Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta, CGH, President of the Republic of Kenya. He had been appointed as Cabinet Secretary for Tourism in the 2015 Government reshuffle.  He moved from the Ministry of Mining, where he was appointed as Kenya’s first Minister in May 2013 and is credited with delivering the Draft Mining Bill in 2014, the first policy and institutional framework review of Kenya’s mining sector since 1940. 

Hon. Balala served simultaneously as Member of Parliament for Mvita Constituency, Mombasa, and as Kenya’s Minister for Tourism from April 2008 to March 2012, where he delivered the Tourism Bill and gave the sector a policy and legal framework geared towards maintaining sustainability. Then, he was elected Chairman of the United Nations World Tourism Organization in 2011 and was voted Best Tourism Minister in Africa in 2009 by Africa Investor (AI).  

He is credited with steering Kenya’s tourism sector to recovery following the post-election violence in 2008. He played a significant role in boosting growth and stability in the Kenyan and regional tourism sector, working closely with private and institutional investors, with conservation and regional development agencies to ensure that the economic potential of this vital sector was both prudently and sustainably managed.

Steven Small

Brand Director, Routes

An economic development and tourism specialist, Steven’s career has focussed on working with destinations supporting inward investment, tourism and economic development initiative.

Roles in inward investment, specifically site selection, and project management led Stevento the Northwest Regional Development Agency, where he developeda grant to help support regional airport’s route development strategies.

As a consultant at Ernst and Young, Steven worked on a number of projects for both private and public sectororganisations, including supporting the development of the business plan for Bath City Council. Back in Manchesterhe joined the city’s inward investment agency, MIDAS, helping attractbusinesses to the city.

From here, he moved to Marketing Manchester workingon a variety of projects including funding packages for Manchester Central –the city’s main convention venue and thenew National Football Museum,as well as delivering the route development fund for Manchester Airport. Steven then took on the role of Head of Business Tourismfor Visit Manchester, working to attract major new events and conferences to the city.

Steven moved back to his home town of Liverpool as Head of Tourism, working with public and private stakeholders to develop a long term strategy to maximise the explosion of the visitor economy, since the European Capital of Culture in 2008, and ensurethe city region continues to improve its offer and grow sustainably.

A move to UBM in February 2017 brought Steven back to route development. As Brand Director, Steven leads a team in the development and delivery of Routes -a portfolio of global events providing a platform for the route development community to negotiate new air services.

A father of two, Steven is a supporter of Everton football club and lives in a village in North Cheshire.

Participating Talks and Sessions