Monday, May 22, 2006
- A change bing to launch a new local airline -- Manx2, linking the Isle of Man to Leeds, Blackpool and Belfast - is expected to bing in July, operating a fleet of 19-seat aircraft. Noel Hayes and James Filleul, veterans of both regional airlines and island services, head the new carrier, based on the Isle of Man. Service to Belfast and Blackpool will begin on July 15. The airline will add service to Leeds Bradford on August 12.
- Embraer (ERJ) reported that it signed a contract with Rivers State Government of Nigeria to provide maintenance support for its Legacy 600 aircraft acquired in June 2005. The contract is the first Legacy support contract signed with a government customer in Africa. The five-year agreement with the Nigerian customer covers scheduled and unscheduled maintenance, OEM parts replacement and maintenance tracking and control. Additional services also are included in the product support package, including a technical representative, available mechanics and pilots for a period of two years.
- In a bid to spur airline traffic, Mineta San Jose International Airport is waiving all landing fees and terminal rents for up to a year for airlines adding flights to certain cities. The airport reported passenger numbers are not growing, having remained steady at 11 million annually, a 20 percent drop from the pre-September 11 levels. While, the airport is still forming its offer, the incentive program includes free marketing from the San Jose Convention & Visitor's Bureau and the San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce for nonstop flights to a desired city. The offer is valued in excess of a $1 million savings annually per assigned flight. The airport has yet to select the cities to which it wants service but is primarily targeting new international routes in addition to its current service to Mexico and a single American flight to Tokyo. Domestically, it mentioned Detroit, Miami and Raleigh-Durham. The San Jose chamber has launched a survey of members to narrow down the list of cities.
- United (UAUA) begins twice- daily service using Bombardier CRJ-700s between Los Angeles and Vancouver. In addition, the CRJs will be used on new daily nonstops between Denver and Grand Rapids, LAX and Oklahoma City, and between Washington Dulles and Birmingham, Ala.
- Bombardier (BBD) moved two of its strategic business jet operations to London's Farnborough Airports. Its regional sales headquarters for Europe and Skyjet International headquarters began operations with TAG Aviation's new Farnborough facilities in mid March. In addition, it also moved its Middle East and African sales operation and Skyjet Internaitonal Middle East office to Dubai International Airport. It is located within ExecuJet's new facility, which also houses a Bombardeier authorized service center and parts depot.
- Horizon launched nonstop service to the wine country from both Seattle and Los Angeles to the Charles M. Schulz - Sonoma County Airport. The LAX-Sonama service will be twice daily and once on Saturdays while the Seattle service will be once daily. Sonoma has been without scheduled air service since 2001. Statistics show that among the airports that travelers use in the five-county region, LAX ranks number one and Seattle number five.
- FlightWorks, an executive aircraft management and charter company, added four aircraft to its charter fleet. An eight-passenger 560 Citation Excel is based at McCollum Field in Atlanta along with a seven-passenger Beechjet 400A and an eight-passenger Westwind II. It also added a Bombardier (BBD) Challenger 300 to be based in Tulsa.
- The newly announced company - 328 Support Services - reached an agreement with Mikado Capital Ltd. to return four previously stored Dornier 328 Jets to service. Work started recently at 328 Support Services' Oberpfaffenhofen (OP) facilities near Munich on the first two aircraft that came from the now-defunct Atlantic Coast Airlines in the United States. The first aircraft is being customized to 19 seats for corporate shuttle use by Club 328. The other three aircraft will be configured to Envoy 14-seat layout for ultimate corporate operations.
- Piaggio Aero Industries SpA, manufacturer of the Avanti and Avanti II twin pusher turboprops, said Mubadala Development, a principal investment company, wholly owned by the government of Abu Dhabi, has acquired 35 percent of the Italian airframer's equity. Piaggio says its current order book numbers more than 100 airframes valued at more than $820 million. Mubadala Development's investment involves purchasing existing and new shares. Piaggio Aero's primary shareholders are the Ferrari and di Mase families. As a result of the transaction they will now hold a 55-percent stake, which, with Mubadala's stake, accounts for 90 percent of the company's share capital. The other 10 percent is held by a mixture of banks and other shareholders. As part of the transaction, Mubadala will receive three of the seven board seats, including the post of vice-chairman. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
- Ramco, an aviation and maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) software company, has issued a new software package for low-cost and start-up airlines. The new program offers rapid implementations with best- and next-best practices for maintenance and engineers and MRO software requirements. It also creates, incorporates and maintains any new business processes for more efficient airline operations.