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Wednesday, May 15, 2024

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    Air Peace CEO Complaining Of The Price War He Ignited On The Lagos To London Route

    I watched Allen Onyema crying out for help on TV this evening, and I felt sorry for him.

    Apparently, the international carriers want to force him out of the lucrative London route with low pricing, which unfortunately means Air Peace can’t compete with them.

    He mentioned that one foreign airline has set the price at $100 to fly to London from Nigeria.

    The airline knew that $100 air fare from Lagos to London was not feasible and sustainable, but they wanted to frustrate Air Peace out of the route and then set the price at the former exploitative price to recover their losses when they had successfully frustrated Air Peace out of the route.

    Air Peace

    To be fair, for British Airways and other airlines that fly to London from Nigeria, what they are doing to Air Peace is normal in the business world.

    In business, price wars are common to force a new entrant or even a competitor out of business, and I wonder what my good man Onyema was thinking when he launched the London route with lower fares.

    Was he expecting the foreign airlines servicing that route to watch him collect their market share and passengers, then fold hands by singing Kumbuya and won’t fight back?

    No now, does not work like that.

    Business is brutal, not romance and the exchanging of saliva by two lovers.

    It is more than that.

    What I expected from Onyema was for him to anticipate the price pushback from foreign airlines and then develop a suitable strategy and proper branding and marketing to counter the onslaught from the bigger foreign airlines with

    Plan A

    Plan B


    Plan C to counter it.

    This is how smart businesses behave: they predict the future and then have a robust response to mitigate it.

    Allen Onyema and his team of brilliant strategists, on the other hand, still have the opportunity to start anew.

    How can we, as a business, react to the price war that foreign airlines are waging and create an effective response plan?

    His team should be able to predict what the airlines will do next after the price war and then prepare their response to it.

    Arik, Medview, and Bellview once flew to London, but they failed.

    I expected Allen and his team to study the banana peel that made them fail, then try to avoid it.

    If Air Peace is to expand and scale beyond the London route, it is critical that they avoid the banana peel that made Arik fail on that route.

    Aside from the internal strategy of Air Peace as a business, the Nigerian government has a role to play in scaling and protecting Air Peace.

    These foreign airlines operating in Nigeria have the patronage and support of their home governments.

    It is time for the Nigerian government to do the same for air peace.

    How about making it compulsory for any Nigerian civil servant going to the UK for an official trip to fly Air Peace instead of British Airways?

    But beyond this government patronage, the Nigerian government can waive charges and taxes and exempt Air Peace from paying some of the charges that these foreign airlines pay to operate in Nigeria.

    The Nigerian government protected Dangote so that he could scale to a global level.

    They could give Allen Onyema the same protection.

    I’m rooting for Air Peace and Allen Onyema.

    I hope they can develop a proper strategy to counter the foreign airline’s price war, which goes beyond emotional blackmail, and appeal to the Nigerian government for assistance in fighting foreign competitors.

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