FastJet raises £2.5m to fund expansion

New African budget carrier Fastjet has raised £2.5 million in funding as it looks to expand operations.

The airline has increased its working capital through fund raising via a placing with an existing institutional investor and a draw down on a £5 million equity financing facility.

The additional funding comes as the carrier outlined an aggressive growth strategy just a week after launching in Tanzania.

Fastjet is weighing up a partnership with Emirates and a potential revival of South African low fares carrier 1Time, which is grounded after being placed into administration in August.

Fastjet carried 6,884 passengers with an average load factor of 85.4% in its first week of operations on two routes. It has sold 18,090 tickets with bookings now being taken for flights until March 2013.

Chief executive Ed Winter said: “A great deal of hard work has gone in from the Fastjet team, the Tanzanian government, agents, contractors and suppliers to make this launch such a success.

“We are looking forward to having all three initial Airbus A319’s fully operational over the coming weeks so that we can adequately cater for the expected holiday surge.”

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