August 2004 
Volume 03, Issue 4 
Commercial Airplanes

New aircraft, new logo, new look

Ethiopian Airlines provides more access to the Cradle of Civilization


Ethiopian Airlines’ first 767-300ERAfter a few years out of its familiar perch as the No. 1 airline in Africa, Ethiopian Airlines is back on top. The airline recently renewed its fleet with a mixed order for six new Boeing 737 and 767 airplanes.

After announcing an aggressive fleet renewal and expansion program, Ethiopian also is looking to add six additional airplanes, including more 737s and 767s. The carrier recently took delivery of its sixth 767-300ER airplane.

Commercial airplane travel in Africa continues to grow at an annual rate of 5 percent. With a unique heritage and rich culture, Ethiopia is creating demand by offering more options to fly to the country.

Situated in northeastern Africa, bordering Sudan to the north and northwest, Eritrea to the north and northeast, Djibouti to the east, Somalia to the southeast, and Kenya to the south, Ethiopia is one of the oldest countries in sub-Saharan Africa. The earliest evidence of Ethiopian history was around 1000 B.C. when the Queen of Sheba visited King Solomon. Ethiopia is home not only to nearly 100 different tribes, but 100 different languages and cultures.

Because of its age, Ethiopia has been touted as the “cradle of civilization.” The country, roughly twice as big as Texas, hosts a variety of distinct geographical zones and contrasts. Its lowest elevation is 120 meters below sea level, and it also is home of the fourth-highest peak in Africa, Ras Dashan, located in the Simien Mountains. Some have called Ethiopia the land of “timeless appeal.”

New Livery

Commercial Airplanes unfurls a new livery

Boeing Commercial Airplanes chose the Farnborough Air Show in the United Kingdom late last month to reveal to the world a bold new color identity standard. The new color scheme will find its most public expression in the livery for the fleet of Boeing company-operated jetliners.

Extending the vision embodied in the new 7E7 Dreamliner to all BCA models, the new livery features six shades of blue and white. A graceful white band streams from nose to tail, dividing the deeper shades of blues on the lower fuselage from the airy interplay of lighter blues and sparkling whites above.

“The colors wonderfully evoke the spirit of Boeing and commercial aviation,” said Rob Pollack, vice president, Brand and Market Positioning, Commercial Airplanes. “They’re reminiscent of the world we connect every day, the horizon for which we strive, and the essence of Boeing Commercial Airplanes—our commitment to innovation and defining the future of flight.”

Far from an everyday event, this is only the fifth time in the company’s 88-year history that the commercial airplane unit has adopted a new color standard to express its brand identity.

The most recent color standard, in use since the launch of the 757 and 767 in 1981, featured a solid white upper fuselage over a solid blue lower fuselage, set apart by red, white, and blue ribbons running nose to tail.

The new color standard will appear on company-operated airplanes, including airplanes in certification flight test. Some BCA ground vehicles also will be painted in the new color scheme. Promotional items, such as models, product images, and even apparel will sport the new standard, as will brochures and web sites.

Late last year, Ethiopian Airlines and Boeing participated in a traditional Ethiopian welcome ceremony in Addis Ababa as Boeing introduced Ethiopian’s first 767-300ER on its arrival in Ethiopia.

“We selected the Boeing 737s and 767s to help us execute our renewal and expansion plans to meet the growing demand in markets we serve to and from Ethiopia,” said Bisrat Nigatu, chief executive officer for Ethiopian Airlines, now retired. “Our decision was based on a combination of operational, commercial and economic considerations.”

Ethiopian Airlines is one of the few airlines that have continued to grow during the past two years during the unprecedented downturn in the international airline industry. It is also the only airline in sub-Saharan Africa run entirely by local nationals.

Together, Boeing and Ethiopian Airlines are the bridge builders contributing to the economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa. “One of the key ways that we are helping to open up trade with Africa is by supporting U.S. exports to Africa’s transportation infrastructure,” said April Foley, vice chair of the U.S. Export-Import Bank. “Civil aviation is critical to a country and a continent’s economic and trade growth.”

Ethiopia is also only the second country in the world to ratify the Cape Town Convention and has taken a leadership role among African countries on this treaty. The Cape Town Treaty was designed to protect the security interest of aircraft, aircraft engines and helicopters. It is used to facilitate asset-based financing and leasing of mobile equipment, including airframes and aircraft engines. It is helping Ethiopian and airlines around the world to upgrade and expand their fleets.

The delivery of the first 767-300ER demonstrated the strength in the Boeing brand and the strong long-term relationship that exists between Boeing and Ethiopian Airlines. A long-time customer, Ethiopian Airlines operates a Boeing-dominated fleet that now includes six 767-300ERs, one 767-200, four 757s and three 737s.

Ethiopian Airlines plays a key role in the sub-Saharan African region, where it has established a maintenance center capable of performing all heavy checks. The center has been certified by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration.

“The combination of the right airplanes and strong leadership is the backbone of this experienced airline,” said Jerry Calhoun, Boeing vice president, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. Calhoun participated in the 767-300ER delivery ceremony events in Addis Ababa.

Successfully operating as one of the leading airlines in Africa for more than 50 years, the airline has unveiled a fresh new livery that signifies its renewal, expansion and confidence.

This investment for the future made by Ethiopian Airlines will enhance its ability to compete in the areas of customer service, market development and profitability.

“Ethiopian Airlines has been built on trust and performance,” said Ihssane Mounir, sales director for Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “Ethiopian’s knowledge and years of experience in the industry will continue to make them successful in the future.”


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