Fastjet flies into dispute over brand licencing in Tanzania

Marion Dakers
FASTJET, the African budget airline backed by EasyJet founder Stelios Haji-Ioannou, has flown into turbulence over its use of the Fly540 name.

Five Forty Aviation, which owns the brand, yesterday withdrew Fastjet’s licences to use the name in Angola, Ghana and Tanzania, claiming Fastjet owes $7.7m (£4.9m) in charges.

Five Forty Aviation also said that Fastjet was in breach of commercial and safety conditions.

“We have not received any safety reports for the past three months from Fastjet’s Africa operations,” said Five Forty boss Don Smith.

The Aim-listed airline has also been caught up in a row over its planes in Tanzania, which aircraft leasing business Avmax claims the firm is operating without paying fees – something Fastjet disputes.

Fastjet yesterday released a statement saying it has the support of the government in Tanzania, where it started commercial flights in November.