The Muscat National Development and Investment Company (ASAAS) recently said that Oman's first budget airline will be branded Salam Air.
ASAAS said the name was selected based on public input through Twitter, the ASAAS website and through other social media platforms. The name, which originated from the Arabic greeting, is meant honor Oman’s established culture and long-standing history as an ambassador of peace.
“From the get-go, we were adamant about involving the general public in the process," ASAAS CEO Khalid bin Hilal Al Yahmadi said. “A call for suggested names was announced on Twitter that received an overwhelming response in a short span of time. After internal discussions with board members and key government entities, eight names were shortlisted and a public poll was conducted that received close to 3,000 responses.”
Al Yahmadi said the tactics used to name the airline were unusual, but he noted the innovative way of communication is representative of the company as a whole.
“While we understand that this is an unconventional way of naming an airline, we believe that integrating new modes of communication and outreach is the way of the future,” Al Yahmadi said. “This is also a clear reflection of the way we do business. We are transparent and our approach is to be part and parcel of the community with all of our multi-industry projects.”
The meaning behind the new brand is symbolic of the nation, the CEO noted.
“The beauty of the word Salam is that it is a homonym,” Al Yahmadi said. “It means safety, which is of fundamental importance in the aviation industry, but also peace, which characterizes the quintessence of Oman as a progressive nation under the visionary leadership of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said.”
Transportation has become an industry focus for ASAAS as the company has identified tourism as a key area that stimulates economic diversification. The company is now adopting a cohesive method to take advantage of the promising future of air travel. The new budget airline, Salam Air, is expected to stimulate economic growth as air traffic demand is projected to increase by 40 percent by 2019. The airline will allow travelers a budget friendly way to travel and expand business in Oman.
“Part of our Arabic greeting, the word 'Salam' is also very well-known by people from around the world,” Al Yahmadi said. “It is simple, memorable and meaningful and that is exactly what we were looking for in a name. I would like to convey my personal gratitude to each and every person who participated during the naming process of an airline that will redefine air travel as we know it.”