Home Aviation and Travel KLM is formed. – 7/10/1919

KLM is formed. – 7/10/1919

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KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, known as Koninklijke Luchtvaart Maatschappij N.V. is the flag carrier airline of the Netherlands. KLM is headquartered in Amstelveen, with its hub at nearby Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. It is part of the Air France–KLM group, and is a member of the SkyTeam airline alliance. KLM was founded in 1919; it is the oldest airline in the world still operating under its original name and had 32,505 employees as of 2013. KLM operates scheduled passenger and cargo services to 145 destinations.

In 1919, a young aviator lieutenant named Albert Plesman sponsored the ELTA aviation exhibition in Amsterdam. The exhibition was a great success; after it closed several Dutch commercial interests intended to establish a Dutch airline, which Plesman was nominated to head. In September 1919, Queen Wilhelmina awarded the yet-to-be-founded KLM its “Royal” (“Koninklijke“) predicate. On 7 October 1919, eight Dutch businessmen, including Frits Fentener van Vlissingen, founded KLM—the abbreviation of Koninklijke Luchtvaart Maatschappij (“Royal Airlines Company, litterally translated”) as one of the first commercial airline companies. Plesman became its first administrator and director.

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