Middle East Airlines Post Strongest 2014 Passenger Traffic Growth
Carriers from the Middle East showed the strongest growth in passenger traffic of any global region in 2014, recording a year-on-year increase of 13 percent.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced global passenger traffic results for the full year of 2014 showing demand (revenue passenger kilometers or RPKs) rose 5.9 percent compared to the full year of 2013. This 2014 performance was above the 10-year average growth rate of 5.6 percent and the 5.2 percent annual growth experienced in 2013 compared to 2012.
The Middle East region’s economies continue to show robust growth in non-oil sectors, and are therefore well-placed to withstand the plunge in oil revenues. Capacity rose 11.9 percent and load factor climbed 0.8 percentage points to 78.1 percent.
More than half of the global growth in passenger travel occurred on airlines in emerging markets including Asia-Pacific and the Middle East. In recent months domestic market growth played a large role in driving growth. This is owed mainly to a pick-up in Chinese domestic travel which expanded by some 11 percent in 2014 over the previous year.
Commenting on the findings, Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO, said: “Demand for the passenger business did well in 2014. With a 5.9 percent expansion of demand, the industry out-performed the 10-year average growth rate. Carriers in the Middle East posted double-digit growth while results in Africa were barely above previous-year levels.
“Overall a record 3.3 billion passengers boarded aircraft last year—some 170 million more than in 2013. While it is clear that people will continue to travel in growing numbers, there have been signs in recent months that softening business confidence is translating into a levelling off of international travel demand.”
5 minutes with... Janthana Kaenprakhamroy, CEO, Tapoly
Founder and CEO of award-winning insurtech firm Tapoly, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy heads up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, winning industry awards, innovating in the digital insurance space, and leading with inclusivity.
Here, Business Chief talks to Janthana about her leadership style and skills.
What do you do, in a nutshell?
I’m founder and CEO of Tapoly, a digital MGA providing a full stack of commercial lines insurance specifically for SMEs and freelancers, as well as a SaaS solution to connect insurers with their distribution partners. We build bespoke, end-to-end platforms encompassing the whole customer journey, but can also integrate our APIs within existing systems. We were proud to win Insurance Provider of the Year at the British Small Business Awards 2018 and receive silver in the Insurtech category at the Efma & Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards 2019.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I try to be as inclusive a leader as possible. I’m committed to creating space for everyone to shine. Many of the roles at Tapoly are performed by women and I speak at industry events to encourage more people to get involved in insurance/insurtech. Similarly, I always try to maintain a growth mindset. I think it’s important to retain values to support learning and development, like reliability, working hard and punctuality.
What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?
Build your network and seek advice. As a leader, you need smart people around you to help you grow your business. It’s not about personally being the best, but being able to find resources and get help where needed.
How do you see leadership changing in a COVID world?
I think the pandemic has proven the importance of inclusive leadership so that everyone feels supported and valued. It’s also shown the importance of being flexible as a leader. We’ve had to remain adaptable to continue delivering high levels of customer service. This flexibility has also been important when supporting employees as everyone has had individual pressures to deal with during this time. Leaders should continue to embed this flexibility within their organisations moving forward.
They say ‘from every crisis comes opportunity’, what opportunities do you see?
The past year has been challenging, but it has also proven the importance of digital transformation in insurance. When working from home was required, it was much harder for insurers to adjust who had not embedded technology within their operating processes because they did not have data stored in the cloud and it caused communication delays with concerned customers at a time when this communication should have been a priority, which ultimately impacts the level of customer satisfaction. This demonstrates the importance of what we are trying to achieve at Tapoly in driving digitalisation in insurance and making communication between insurers and distribution partners seamless.
What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?
Start sooner, don’t be afraid to take (calculated) risks and make sure you raise enough money to get you through the initial seed stage.