The carrier, originally called Ethiopian Air Lines (EAL), was founded on 21 December 1945, with an initial investment of ETB 2,5 million, divided in 25,000 shares that were entirely held by the government. The company was financed by the Ethiopian government but managed by TWA. At the beginning, it relied upon American pilots, technicians, administrators and accountants; even its General Managers were from TWA. Minister of Works and Communications Fitawrari Tafasse Habte Mikael became EAL's first president and chairman, whereas H. H. Holloway —who was American— was appointed by TWA as general manager. The board held the first meeting on 26 December 1945 (1945-12-26), with a key point of the agenda being the deposit of E£75,000 in a bank in Cairo for the acquisition of aircraft and spare parts. Shortly afterwards, the airline negotiated for landing rights with Aden, Egypt, French Somaliland, Saudi Arabia and Sudan, and five Douglas C-47s were bought; these aircraft were flown to Addis Ababa in February 1946 (1946-02).