Abu Dhabi-based firm roped in on €200,000-a-month retainer to assist Air Malta transition

Air Malta has engaged Abu Dhabi-based consultancy firm Knighthood Global to help set up the new national airline

Air Malta (File photo: MaltaToday)
Air Malta (File photo: MaltaToday)

Air Malta has engaged an Abu Dhabi-based consultancy firm to help set up the new national airline.

Knighthood Global, based in the capital of the United Arab Emirates, is on a €200,000-a-month retainer, as the government prepares to shutdown Air Malta, and launch a new airline.

The information, tabled in parliament on Wednesday by Finance Minister Clyde Caruana, shows the firm has been engaged to provide financial and strategic advice. The contract was signed in June 2022, was extended in January, and will expire at the end of the year.

The contract was signed by Knighthood Global executive chairman James Hogan and Air Malta chairman David Curmi. Extensions were signed by the firm’s CEO James Rigney.

According to its website, Knighthood Global goes “beyond the data and analytics of the business plan to create a real partnership” where it shares its hands-on management experience and operational expertise to shape and build businesses.

The company has offices in Abu Dhabi, Geneva and Malta.

In his reply, Clyde Caruana said the firm will be giving strategic and financial advice, help set up and implement a business plan for the new airline, and help in configuring a finance accounting system.

Earlier this month, the finance minister announced Air Malta plc, will formally cease operations on 30 March 2024.

The new airline will operate eight aircraft and eventually, three of these will be fully owned by the company rather than leased. The airline will operate on 17 routes.

The new company will re-employ the 390 people currently on Air Malta’s books and the recruitment process will start in December this year.

Workers will be given new work contracts commensurate with market conditions.

READ ALSO | Air Malta: After a hard landing, prepare for take-off