Novick’s exit from SAA bidding consortium: “We brought the skills, but were kept in the dark.”

Posted on 11/17/2022

For many external observers, airline veteran Gidon Novick personified the best chance of a turnaround for teetering South African Airways and saving at least some of the billions injected by taxpayers. But the former CEO of Comair and co-founder of Lift this week announced his resignation as a director of the Takatso consortium, which is negotiating to acquire 51% of SAA. Forthright as ever, Novick says his team brought airline expertise to the consortium and invested heavily over 18 months in compiling a project plan but despite its 20% shareholding, was “kept in the dark”. He spoke to Alec Hogg of BizNews.

Please see timestamps below

00:00 - Introduction
00:05 - Involvement with SAA
02:30 - Idea for takeover
04:05 - Partnership with Takatso consortium
05:57 - How it happened
08:11 - On who was excluded
09:18 - When he started feeling uncomfortable
10:08 - Alternatives for SAA
11:11 - Rumours of Emirates buying SAA
13:57 - Discussions with the Department of Public Enterprises
15:10 - Thoughts on SAA incident
18:23 - On Lyft
20:51 - On the possibility of another consortium
21:40 - Implications on taxpayers