Kenya Airways Bets Big on Cargo Business With Boeing 787 “Preighter”

KQ makes history after converting Boeing 787 Dreamliner into cargo plane

Kenya Airways' Engineering team and all involved in this first-ever B787 Dreamliner repurposing of a passenger into a cargo aircraft. PHOTO: KQ

Kenya Airways has set an ambitious target to grow the contribution of cargo to its business from seven to 20% over a five-year period.

This is after it unveiled its first fully repurposed passenger Boeing 787  Dreamliner into a “Preighter” with a carrying capacity from a minimum 30 to 56 tons. 

This is through KQ’s partnership with Avianor. The term preighter was coined in the pandemic to refer to passenger aircraft converted to carry cargo.

KQ Cargo Preighter is timely as it enhances JKIA’s cargo capacity and ability to handle transshipments of Covid-19 vaccines.

“This is another avenue for us to generate revenues for Kenya Airways to make the airline more sustainable,” KQ Chief Executive Officer Allan Kilavuka said on Monday.

JKIA has a capacity of 1.2 million, including 9,000m² of cold room facilities.

Kenya Airports Authority MD, Alex Gitari noted that the Authority will continue to support the air cargo industry by providing the requisite infrastructure and facilities within our network of airports.