ADQ, Etihad unveil plans to grow Abu Dhabi’s aviation ecosystem

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The proposed transaction will see two Etihad businesses join Adnec.

Etihad Airways and ADQ announced on Thursday a proposed transaction that will support the ongoing transformation of Etihad Airways and the future growth of the civil aviation sector in Abu Dhabi. As part of the proposed transaction, a number of Etihad’s businesses providing airline support services will become part of a new ADQ aviation company.

Once the transaction is complete, the airline support services businesses will benefit from being part of ADQ’s broad mobility and logistics portfolio, which includes Abu Dhabi Airports and AD Ports Group.

The businesses included in the proposed transaction are Etihad Engineering, Etihad Airport Services Cargo, Etihad Airport Services Ground, Etihad Aviation Training, Etihad Secure Logistics and Etihad Technical Training.

Additionally, the proposed transaction will see two Etihad businesses join Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Company (Adnec). Etihad Airport Services Catering will combine with Adnec’s catering business Capital Hospitality, and Etihad Holidays will join Adnec’s tourism promotion business, Tourism 365.

The proposed agreement marks the start of a new chapter for Etihad Airways, allowing the airline to further sharpen its focus on its core business and respond with greater agility to market opportunities as global travel demand rebounds from COVID-19.

Mohamed Hassan Alsuwaidi, CEO of ADQ, said, “With the proposed addition of Etihad’s experienced aviation support businesses to our new dedicated aviation company, ADQ is primed to develop an integrated aviation platform that is driven by performance and a robust financial foundation through its new company.”

“With an integrated mobility and logistics portfolio that plays a leading role in the development of Abu Dhabi’s global connectivity, we are well-positioned to unlock the growth potential of these aviation services businesses. We see potential to capitalise on growth opportunities, attract a wider client base of airlines and drive the future expansion of Abu Dhabi’s aviation sector.”

Tony Douglas, Group CEO of Etihad Aviation Group, said, “We’re excited to partner with ADQ on the next stage of our transformation. The past two years have changed the face of aviation and the proposed agreement marks a significant milestone in how we are repositioning Etihad Airways and our subsidiaries for long-term success.”

“This agreement will allow us to place 100 per cent of our focus on Etihad Airways to capitalise on recovering travel demand and will benefit our staff, the millions of guests who fly with Etihad Airways every year, and Abu Dhabi’s wider aviation sector. We are working closely with ADQ to ensure the transition is as smooth as possible.”

Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and Group CEO of Adnec, said, “The inclusion of Etihad Airport Services Catering and Etihad Holidays supports Abu Dhabi’s strategy which aims to achieve integration between various business units across exciting economic sectors. This move will enable us to go above and beyond the customers’ expectations by building on what has been done already. Our focus remains on achieving milestones and continuing to work to enhance competitiveness at the regional and international levels, as well as increase contributions to the economy of Abu Dhabi and support sustainable development.”

The businesses joining ADQ’s new aviation company and Adnec will remain key long-term strategic partners to Etihad Airways.

The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Established in Abu Dhabi in 2018, ADQ is one of the region’s largest holding companies with investments in companies locally and internationally. Both an asset owner and investor, ADQ’s broad portfolio of major enterprises span key sectors of a diversified economy, including energy and utilities, food and agriculture, healthcare and pharma, and mobility and logistics, amongst others. As a strategic partner of Abu Dhabi’s government, ADQ is committed to accelerating the transformation of the emirate into a globally competitive and knowledge-based economy.

Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE, was formed in 2003 and quickly went on to become one of the world’s leading airlines. From its home in Abu Dhabi, Etihad flies to passenger and cargo destinations in the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Asia, Australia and North America. Together with Etihad’s codeshare partners, Etihad’s network offers access to hundreds of international destinations. In recent years, Etihad has received numerous awards for its superior service and products, cargo offering, loyalty programme and more. Etihad is recognised as one of the world’s leading airlines in response to COVID-19 and was the first airline in the world to fully vaccinate its crew on board.

Etihad sees tackling the climate crisis as the most important issue of our time, and through strategic partnerships with major global aviation brands and OEMs, Etihad is relentless in its pursuit of industry decarbonisation. To learn more, visit etihad.com.

Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (Adnec), is part of ADQ, one of the region’s largest holding companies with a broad portfolio of major enterprises spanning key sectors of Abu Dhabi’s diversified economy. Adnec is a leader in managing and developing international strategic centres and was founded with a vision to become the leading destination for popular, high-profile international conferences, exhibitions and congresses in the Middle East and North Africa. It owns and operates the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, the largest exhibition venue in the Mena region. In addition, Adnec also includes ExCeL London, Al Ain Convention Centre, Aloft London ExCeL, Aloft Abu Dhabi, Andaz Capital Gate Abu Dhabi, Anantara Sir Bani Yas Island Abu Dhabi Resort, and Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara, Adnec Services, Capital Hospitality, Tourism 365 and Capital Events.



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