Monday, February 6, 2006
A new Canadian regional airline, Porter Airlines, will fly Bombardier [BBD] Q400s from its base at Toronto's Island Airport. REGCO Holdings has signed a contract to buy 10 Q400s that will be flown by Porter Airlines. The contract includes options for an additional 10 airplanes. The turboprops will be configured to fly 70 passengers. The firm contract is valued at $250 million. The new carrier plans to begin service later this year with routes to major cities, both in Canada and the United States, within 90 minutes of Toronto. Bombardier builds the Q400 in Toronto.
Two Japanese airlines recently exercised options for more Bombardier aircraft. Japan Airlines International is acquiring one additional CRJ 200, which will be flown by its regional unit, J-Air. The regional airline will have nine 50-seat RJs once the plane is delivered. Japan Air Commuter has exercised an option to buy one more Q400. The carrier has now placed 10 firm orders for the turboprop since August 2001.
South African Express Airways also has signed a contract to purchase two Q400s, which will be configured to seat 74 passengers. The contract is valued at $48.5 million. South African Express will be the first to fly the Q400 in Africa. The carrier has a fleet of seven Q300s and seven CRJ 200s.
Ireland's CityJet has leased a 94-seat BAe 146-200 from BAe Systems Regional Aircraft. A unit of Air France, CityJet now has 19 BAe 146s in its fleet.
First Flight Couriers Private has signed long-term leases with BAe Systems for three ATP freighters in order to start a domestic freight operation in India. The three planes will be delivered in the second quarter and configured as E Class bulk freighters. First Flight has also signed a material overhaul and repair contract with BAe.
Atlantic Airlines has signed a lease for three ATP Freighters, equipped with the large freight door option. Two of the three planes are ready for immediate delivery while the third must have the freight door installed.
The United Kingdom's Eastern Airways has leased two more Jetstream 41s from BAe Systems. The 29-seaters are due to be delivered in April. The two aircraft have to be refurbished to European standards as they were most recently used by a U.S. carrier. With the latest order, Eastern will have a fleet of 21 Jetstream 41s, making it the largest operator of that aircraft.
BAe Regional recently won a $30 million JetSpares contract to cover 37 planes in the Lufthansa Regional Group.
Ameriflight recently purchased five Beechcraft 1900C freighters from Raytheon Airline Aviation Services. The planes have already been delivered. Burbank, Calif.- based Ameriflight already had 20 1900Cs in its fleet.
Antigua's LIAT recently renewed the lease of two Q300s for another 36 months. The planes are part of AeroCentury's [ACY] portfolio.
Swiss-based Jet Aviation Group last week announced that it has purchased Midcoast Aviation from Sabrelinger Corp. The purchase price was not disclosed. Midcoast is a full-service corporate jet maintenance provider based in St. Louis with facilities at both St. Louis Downtown and Lambert-St. Louis airports. It will retain its name and management team in the deal. This marks the first acquisition since the Frankfurt-based Permira Funds purchased Jet Aviation last October.
USA Jet Airlines
USA Jet Airlines, a unit of Active Aero Group, recently added a DC9-30 to its fleet of executive charter aircraft. The plane is configured with 74 first-class seats.
Executive Jet Management
Executive Jet Management recently added three planes to its fleet, increasing its portfolio of business aircraft to 100. The company added a Challenger 604 at its Seattle base, a Falcon 2000EX in Dallas and a Hawker 800 to its Cleveland base.