January 30, 2016 / 8:39 AM / 3 years ago

Air Cote d'Ivoire turnover up 34 percent; plans to raise capital

ABIDJAN (Reuters) - Turnover at Ivory Coast’s national airline Air Cote d’Ivoire was up 34 percent at 76 billion CFA francs ($125 million) last year, as the young state-run entity presses ahead with its expansion plan, Chief Executive Rene Decurey said on Friday.

The company, which was founded in 2013, plans to increase its destinations from 19 to 22 and seeks to raise capital to fund an increase in its fleet, Decurey said.

Air Cote d’Ivoire is 65 percent state-owned, with Air France holding a 20 percent stake and Ivorian private investor Goldenrod holding 15 percent.

The airline currently has seven aircraft but aims to be operating nine by the end of the year with next year’s target for turnover set at 90 million CFA francs.

To fund its expansion, the airline will increase its capital from 25 billion currently to 65 billions CFA francs in the first quarter of 2016, and to 100 billion CFA francs at the end of the year, he said.

“Twenty five billion in capital is not sufficient to fund our future,” Decurey said.

He said the company was aiming to carry 700,000 passengers in 2016, up from 600,000 last year and will be profitable by 2018, he said.

($1 = 606.0000 CFA francs)

Reporting by Loucoumane Coulibaly; Writing by Edward McAllister; Editing by Greg Mahlich

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