Today, we’d like to take a moment to honour and celebrate HADID’s 40th year by making mention of the company’s humble beginnings and unrivalled success and milestones throughout the years.
Currently, HADID offers a comprehensive range of international trip planning services as well as air charters, Executive Aviation Terminal management and governmental flight support. The company also provides bespoke concierge services for passengers and flight crews and travel services including, more recently, health & wellness travel with the option of a ‘dedicated butler’ service for patients. However, it took time, effort and dedication for the company to expand its full suite of services internationally.
Initially focusing on the Middle East, HADID’s historical experience is comprised of the operation of luxury executive lounges with provisions of a comprehensive range of aviation services. Relied upon for its privacy, security, and professionalism, HADID’s management of these facilities has proudly served top dignitaries as well as VIP clientele, for virtually all of the 40 years the company has been in action. In fact, up until the year 2000, HADID was the only international flight support company of its kind within the Middle East.
The Story of HADID International Services began in 1981 when it was founded by Baha Eddin Hadid. Baha Eddin Hadid was able to open his first UAE office by 1997 in the Sharjah Airport Free Zone, a burgeoning aviation hub, later headquartering in the Dubai Airport Free Zone (DAFZA) in 2003.
Baha is well regarded as a man who invested in people, many of whom still proudly serve under the company today. The same year Baha opened his UAE office, he immediately began supporting major airlines and their humanitarian flights, including flights for the UN World Food Program. From there, he could only continue to flourish.
By the year 2000, in addition to being the only international flight support company within the Middle East, HADID began offering travel agent services to the public under the name HADID Travel. As the digital transformation era began creating waves in 2002, HADID developed its own in-house proprietary software system called MASTER. MASTER (now COMPASS) was and remains the company’s flight management system/CRM which had the capacity to handle thousands of flights internationally. Not only was this quite a feat for its time, but MASTER was also the first flight management system of its kind. Before MASTER, each individual flight operator had to rely on their own systems. Many years later, in 2018, the MASTER flight management system would only improve alongside digital transformation trends, maturing into a newer and updated version referred to as COMPASS. In other words, the company’s technology remained a focal point to improve all aspects of businesses and exceedingly so.
Shortly after the company opened its doors to travel agent services, HADID opened its first world Headquarters in the Dubai Airport Free Zone in 2003. During this time, the company became a full member of the Middle East Business Aviation Association (MEBAA), exhibiting in the famous Dubai Air Show. In addition to MEBAA, HADID also became a strategic partner with the International Air Transport Association (IATA). HADID has since joined with other globally recognised business aviation associations including NBAA, EBAA and AsBAA, regularly exhibiting at their associated annual trade shows.
By the year 2006, HADID International Services began opening worldwide offices, starting with the United Kingdom, Russia, Germany, the United States, Algeria and Senegal—to name a few. Later in 2009, HADID launched its international services beginning with its first operations centre in Karachi at Jinnah International Airport (IATA: KHI, ICAO: OPKC).
Just a year later, in 2010, HADID experienced a major moment among its milestones: The company opened its first operations in New Delhi, India. Since the company’s opening there, it has been able to contribute to India’s positive aviation growth while widening their service offerings. HADID was able to open an office in Niger shortly after in 2012, gaining an exclusive agreement to provide overflight and landing permits in the country under the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). Then in 2013, HADID became a founding member of the African Business Aviation Association (AfBAA), once again having a positive impact on not just a future focused country—but across an entire continent.
By 2014, HADID was able to strengthen its global business structure by expanding throughout the United States, India, Sri Lanka, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Malaysia, Brazil, South Africa, and Ethiopia. By 2015, HADID was able to open an office with full supervisory capabilities in Djibouti, just on the heels of Ethiopia, Niger, Algeria, Kenya, and the Republic of the Congo.
HADID concluded early on, that Africa posed some of the main challenges for aviation. This insight culminated in the decision to open its first office in Senegal, next Algeria, followed by Niger with an exclusive contract with ANAC (Niger CAA), South Africa, and recently, Ethiopia. HADID has seen a promising growth that is still increasing across Africa, accompanied by strong Asian investment in the continent. The company plans to cover the continent completely in the coming years.
In April 2018, HADID entered into a partnership with Riviera Airport (IATA: ALL, ICAO: LIMG), forming Riviera Executive Aviation (REA) to operate and manage the Executive Aviation Terminal at the airport. REA and Riviera Airport are focused on serving Business Aviation, catering mainly to executive and high net worth clientele flying into Monaco and the surrounding Franco-Italian Riviera, adding more of a luxurious association to the company as a whole.
In the same year, HADID began managing and operating the Merhan Lounge at Jinnah International Airport, which serves as the airport’s exclusive General Aviation facility. During more recent times, specifically the COVID-19 outbreak, HADID has been working closely with CAAs and various airlines and operators to minimise aviation disruption, assist with re-planning and re-routings, fuel optimisation, and most importantly—keeping clients informed of the changing regulatory updates and NOTAMS. HADID is also working closely with operators and international airlines flying medical cargo routes to transport the vaccines swiftly to where they are needed.
HADID recognises the accelerated importance of digitisation and cognizance towards health and safety across the industry. The company’s in-house systems and client portals have been increasingly relied upon, enabling the successful support of hundreds of flights worldwide throughout the current global pandemic. HADID flight operations experts also continue to assist operators, crews, and passengers with the very latest updates and information pertaining to worldwide travel restrictions and requirements in what has become a highly complex global travel environment.
Over the course of 40 years, and even through a global pandemic, HADID is a company that has remained poised. Consistently positioning itself as a leading international aviation service provider, HADID has truly evolved from a regional flight support company to what is now a worldwide provider of a full suite of aviation services.The HADID team has always been and will always be dedicated to its clients and its people, undertaking whatever is necessary to continue to provide its excellent services internationally.
That would include the company’s ongoing humanitarian support as it aims to remain a valuable player in the fight against international challenges, such as the ongoing pandemic. The company also remains hyper focused on climate change and the reach it has to increase environmental awareness and sustainability. Additionally, HADID is committed to the use of smart, user-friendly technologies, employing an equal-opportunity and diverse workplace, developing means of health and wellness travel, and plans to continue offering exclusive travel products that will improve the passenger experience.
All of the above and more are precisely why the company has seen such success over the years and continues to remain a leading provider in aviation services.