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Cypriot start-up CobaltAir selects Airbus for fleet requirements

CobaltAir (Larnaca) is a Cypriot start-up planning to serve the regional market with a fleet of Airbus Industrie (AIB, Toulouse Blagnac) aircraft. According to a press release, it has already begun certification with the Cypriot Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) in the hopes of commencing commercial operations by the end of the year.

“We are establishing a ‘New Age’ airline that will be based in Cyprus and will operate regionally and throughout Europe," chief executive Peter Kelly said in a ...

Oil slump gives CityJet breathing space over ARJ replacements

Cityjet (WX, Dublin Int'l) will keep its fleet of sixteen ARJ-85s in commercial service for longer than previously expected thanks to the recent drop in the price of oil the founder of parent firm Intro Aviation, Hans Rudolf Wöhrl, has said.

In an interview with Switzerland's Aerotelegraph, Wöhrl said pressure to find a suitable replacement for the BAe Systems quadjet had alleviated since oil came down to around USD60 per barrel. Following its acquisition of the airline from ...

DHL Express places 'significant' B757 P2F conversion order

DHL Air (D0, East Midlands) parent firm DHL Express has booked an unspecified, but significant, number of B757-200PCF conversions CargoFacts magazine has reported. The orders are with Boeing-licensed conversion specialist Precision Aircraft Solutions.

Aside from DHL Air, DHL Express covers its air freight requirements through several other carriers worldwide including AeroLogic (3S, Leipzig/Halle) and EAT Leipzig (QY, Leipzig/Halle) in Germany, DHL Aero Expreso (D5, Panamá City Tocumen Int'l) ...

Spanish start-up, León Airlines, outlines summer network plans

León Airlines (León) has outlined its planned summer schedule, set to launch on April 27 with 6x weekly services between León and Barcelona El Prat, and Barcelona El Prat and Burgos.

Using a Saab 340A, SP-MRC (cn 143), chartered from Skytaxi (Poland) (TE, Wroclaw), the Spanish virtual carrier plans to additionally serve the following seasonal destinations from Burgos over the period June 17 to September 14: Malaga (weekly); Menorca (weekly); Palma de Mallorca Son Sant Joan (2x weekly); and ...

United converts B787s orders to B777s

United Airlines (UA, Chicago O'Hare) has converted orders for ten B787s into ten B777-300(ER)s with deliveries expected to begin next year. Announcing a first quarter net income of USD582 million, the carrier said the new B777s would "provide attractive upgauge and range opportunities to the company at competitive economics."

These are United first aircraft of the type though it does operate an extensive fleet of seventy-four B777-200(ER)s.

In related news, United said that it is in final ...

Allegiant Air to acquire three more A320s

Allegiant Air (G4, Las Vegas McCarran) has announced that it has purchased three more ex-Hamburg Airways (HK, Hamburg Fuhlsbüttel) A320 aircraft adding to the two A320-200s bought from Philippine Airlines (PR, Manila) and the six A319-100s bought from Cebu Pacific Air (5J, Manila) earlier this year.

"The aircraft were most recently operated by a carrier in Europe and are scheduled to enter the Allegiant operating fleet in 2015," the budget carrier said in a statement.

According to the ...

Denim Air ACMI to source a B737 for FlyDenim operation

Denim Air ACMI (J7, Amsterdam) is in talks with three firms concerning the lease of a B737-800 for its recently established charter outfit, FlyDenim. Based out of Amsterdam, FlyDenim will offer tailor-made aircraft capacity to the aviation and tourism market.

“Concrete talks and negotiations with respectable and well-known tour operators have shown a strong demand for larger aircraft, like the A320 family and B737 NG," Carst Lindeboom, co-founder and CCO of the new Dutch aircraft capacity ...

India's Spicejet cool on JP Morgan Chase investment

Spicejet (SG, Delhi Int'l) has deferred an investment offer from one of the funds managed by US multinational banking and financial services holding company, JP Morgan Chase & Co., India's DNA news has reported.

"They [JP Morgan Chase] are interested in investing but Ajay Singh does not want to bring them on board at the present CMP [Current Market Price]," a senior company executive told dna. "He wants to further improve [the] valuation of the company before getting them (JP Morgan Chase) ...

LCC China United eyes int'l flights out of Beijing, Shenzhen

China United Airlines (KN, Beijing Nanyuan) is set to commence international operations once its secures approval from the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) to do so. CAPA reports the carrier applied to the regulatory body in January for permission to operate regional (Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan) and international services around Asia from its bases at Beijing Nanyuan and Shenzhen.

The move comes against the backdrop of the China Eastern Airlines (MU, Shanghai Hongqiao) ...

Norwegian eyes British, Spanish AOCs - Kjos

Norwegian (DY, Oslo Gardermoen) Chief Executive Officer Bjørn Kjos says Norwegian Air Shuttle ASA is actively pursuing Air Operator Certificates (AOC) in the United Kingdom and Spain in a bid to tap into each country's bilateral air service traffic rights. At present, Norwegian holds four AOCs, three of which are Norwegian - Norwegian Air Norway (NAN, Oslo Gardermoen), Norwegian Long Haul (DU, Oslo Gardermoen) and Norwegian Air Shuttle (NAS). The other is Irish and is for its controversial ...

Flybe. Nordic to rebrand as Nordic Regional Airlines

Flybe. Nordic (FC, Helsinki Vantaa) will, subject to approval from the Finnish Trade Register (Kaupparekisterin), be rebranded Nordic Regional Airlines (FC, Helsinki Vantaa) later next month as ownership of the airline changes hands.

“The new name reflects our company's core business, i.e. regional flying," Flybe Nordic's managing director, Maunu Visuri, said. "Our goal is to continue to be a high-quality and skilled Nordic airline offering excellent service to our ...

Rosaviatsia suspends Tomskavia's AOC

Tomskavia (TSK, Tomsk) has had its Air Operators Certificate (AOC) suspended by the Russian Federal Air Transport Agency (Rosaviatsia) with effect from April 17.

In a bulletin, the regulator said that during a surprise inspection on April 8, Tomskavia was found to be operating only one airworthy aircraft in violation of its AOC's terms and regulations, which require a minimum of three. It has been given until July 17 to rectify the situation following which its certificate will be revoked ...

AirAsia aims to raise $300mn through Indonesian unit's IPO

AirAsia (AK, Kuala Lumpur Int'l) Group founder and CEO Tony Fernandes says the Group is aiming to realize USD300 million through the sale of a 30% stake in its Indonesia AirAsia (QZ, Jakarta Soekarno-Hatta) subsidiary.

Speaking to the International Business Times at the recent World Economic Forum in Jakarta, Fernandes said the Indonesian unit's IPO had been tentatively scheduled for the first half of 2016. AirAsia Berhad owns a 49% stake in the carrier while Indonesian firm, PT Fersindo ...

Equatorial Guinea's Punto Azul to maintain scheduled operations

Punto Azul (ZR, Malabo) will maintain a presence in the scheduled services market following a recent change in airline's leadership. Late last month, the Equatoguinean carrier announced it would be ending its scheduled services in favour of focusing on charter contracts for oil firms in the region.

However, an airline statement to ch-aviation says that in line with a recently unveiled restructuring programme, newly appointed managing director Deanna Chuck has reversed that decision ...

Wizz Air to debut A321 operations this November

Wizz Air (W6, Budapest) is planning to commence A321 operations with effect from November 20 onwards ch-aviation can exclusively reveal. Information at hand indicates the Hungarian budget carrier will deploy its maiden aircraft of the type on a 3x daily Budapest-London Luton service while the second aircraft will be used on daily flights from Budapest to Brussels Charleroi, Eindhoven, and Istanbul Sabiha Gökcen from December 16 onwards. Thereafter, effective February 26, the third twinjet will ...

Virgin Australia to wet-lease an Alliance Air Fokker 100

Virgin Australia (VA, Brisbane Int'l) will wet-lease a Fokker 100 from Alliance Airlines (QQ, Brisbane Int'l) over the period May 25 to July 3. The twinjet will be deployed on scheduled and charter flights from Perth Int'l to Paraburdoo, Barimunya, Derby Curtin, Broome, and Kalgoorlie.

The carrier's Virgin Australia Regional (XR, Perth Int'l) subsidiary also operates a fleet of twelve Fokker 100s for use on flights throughout Western Australia.

Skygreece to lease a Portuguese A340 this summer

Skygreece Airlines (GW, Athens Int'l) will dry-lease an A340-300 from Portuguese ACMI/charter specialists Hi Fly (5K, Lisbon) with effect from next month. Sources exclusive to ch-aviation state CS-TQM (cn 117) will be used to service the carrier's flights from Athens to New York JFK in the United States, scheduled to begin later next month.

SkyGreece will use its own B767-300(ER) for services from Athens Int'l, Budapest and Thessaloniki to Toronto Pearson and from Athens Montréal Trudeau. ...

Portugal's Orbest takes delivery of maiden A330-200

Orbest (Portugal) (4O, Lisbon) took delivery of its first A330-200 on Saturday, April 18. The aircraft, formerly EI-EZL (cn 802) with Italian carrier Meridiana fly (IG, Olbia), will become CS-TRX on the Portuguese registry shortly.

The Portuguese ACMI/charter carrier also operates a larger A330-300 and an A320-200 for Spanish leisure operator, Evelop Airlines (E9, Palma de Mallorca Son Sant Joan).

Brazil's Sideral Air Cargo takes delivery of maiden ATR42

Sideral Air Cargo (SID, Curitiba) has taken delivery of its maiden Avions de Transport Régional (Toulouse Blagnac) equipment research has shown. The aircraft is an ATR42-300, PT-MFE (cn 295), that was formerly in service with TRIP Linhas Aéreas (T4, Campinas Viracopos).

Until now, the Brazilian cargo carrier had been an all-Boeing (BOE, Chicago O'Hare) operation with a fleet of two B737-400(F)s, one B737-300(F), and one B737-400 (currently undergoing conversion into a freighter at Dothan). ...

Air Croatia suspends operations until June

Air Croatia (Zagreb) will suspend operations with effect from tonight, Thursday, April 23, as a result of financial constraints. In a statement to ch-aviation, the carrier said the firm responsible for processing their credit-card transactions (name supplied) had failed to remit funds to the airline leading to its inability to settle dues with Denim Air ACMI (J7, Amsterdam), the firm from which Air Croatia has chartered an ATR42.

The virtual carrier says flights have been suspended until June ...

Lufthansa at risk of losing DAX index listing

Lufthansa (LH, Frankfurt Int'l) parent, Lufthansa Group, risks demotion from Frankfurt's blue-chip DAX index German business daily, Handelsblatt, has reported. Market analysts who spoke to the paper said that if Lufthansa Group's share price and market capitalization continue to fall, that could precipitate the Group's relegation to the MDAX, the index that caters for companies ranked below the DAX.

A review of the DAX's composition is due to take place in September and among the criteria ...

Peruvian Airlines ends DC-8 freighter operations

Peruvian Airlines (P9, Lima) has ended DC-8 cargo operations with the return of its only freighter, a DC-8-73(F), to its owner SkyBus Jet Cargo (Las Vegas McCarran) Aerotransport has reported. The 47 year-old jet, formerly OB-2059-P (msn 45990) in Peru, will now revert to its original registration of N807DH in the United States.

Despite their age, DC-8 freighters are still on the books of operators around the world including Heavylift Cargo Airlines (HN, Brisbane Int'l), ...

Swiss start-up Eurosky rebrands as Metropolitan Airlines

Eurosky Airlines (Zurich) has rebranded itself Metropolitan Airlines (Zurich) ahead of its revised launch date of later next year. Incorporated in September 2014, the start-up plans to offer scheduled regional European flights using a boutique airline concept.

"The new airline services will fill the gaps not served by existing Network Carriers and Low Cost Airlines," Metropolitan has stated.

Nigerian CAA set to reinstate Discovery Air's AOC

Discovery Air (DO, Lagos) is set to resume operations following reports the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) will shortly reinstate its Air Operators Certificate (AOC), revoked in January of this year.

Nigeria's Daily Independent newspaper says the Director General of the NCAA, Capt. Muhtar Usman, confirmed the move in a letter to the carrier earlier this week. The reinstatement of its AOC was dependent on it passing a Financial Health Audit. In a bid to move matters along, the ...

Saudia to order 100 more aircraft over next five years

Saudia (SV, Jeddah) will acquire approximately one-hundred new aircraft as part of its latest Five Year Plan covering 2015 to 2020. Arab News says the decision was taken at a recent airline board meeting held last week.

“The plan focuses on strengthening Saudia’s operational efficiency, continuous modernization of fleet by purchasing more than 100 new aircraft to meet growing domestic passenger requirements and expand the airline’s international operations,” Saudia's director general, Saleh ...