TAR Aerolíneas (YQ, Querétaro) has entered into a long-term financing partnership with US-based Ethos Asset Management, wherein the fund will inject "significant capital" for the airline's expansion.

"We, at TAR, are very pleased to be partnering with a solid financial entity such as Ethos Asset Management, to address the opportunity that the Mexican regional aviation market presents; via a loan facility which will enable TAR to strengthen its market position and provide the financial by resources to expand TAR's footprint in the market," Chief Executive Ricardo Baston said.

The parties did not disclose the loan amount but said it would last for "several years". The partnership does not involve equity.

Baston did not respond to ch-aviation's request for more details of TAR's growth plans.

The regional specialist currently operates nine E145s, of which only three are active. It plies a network of scheduled domestic services connecting regional airports mainly in northern Mexico through bases at Querétaro and Chihuahua airports. It is the largest operator of regional aircraft on the Mexican market, alongside smaller Calafia Airlines and Aerus, with Señor Air poised to enter the market shortly.

"With little competition, the domestic market is attractive while underserved and difficult for other operators to access. The gap between supply and demand in the market is large and widened as a result of the pandemic. With more 150-seat aircraft and a highly concentrated market, there is a gap in major carriers' strategies that regional airlines can fill," Ethos Asset Management CEO Carlos Santos said.

The partnership is Ethos Asset's first financing agreement with an airline.