Heston Airlines (HST, Vilnius) parent Heston Aviation has officially joined forces with Irish lessor Genesis Aircraft Services to build and launch the Vilnius-based start-up in its efforts to become established as an all-A320 Family charter and ACMI service provider, a jointly issued press release has revealed.

While announcing that Genesis and Heston Aviation had “formed an alliance” to get the airline off the ground, the statement said that Genesis, which was founded in 2014 by global financial service firm Barings, had been working with the Lithuanian aircraft trading and maintenance firm to this end “over the past 12 months.”

During this period, the Dublin Int'l-based lessor “has supported the strategy and development of the airline and has just concluded on delivering the airline’s first 180-seat A320 aircraft to support the final stages of Heston Airlines’ application for an EASA Air Operator Certificate (AOC).”

Genesis will now work with Heston Airlines “to deliver additional A320s” which are planned to enter service in 2021, the statement added.

“Since March 2020, Genesis has been working together with the Heston team on this innovative way to bring flexible lift directly into the charter and ACMI airline market, providing both wet and dry leasing solutions to airlines as they start to take off with the vaccine roll-out across Europe,” Genesis CEO Karl Griffin said.

Heston Airlines CEO Jonas Rinkauskas elaborated that “entering this agreement marks a substantial moment in our long-term strategy and efforts to increase vertical integration and cost control.” Leveraging the lessor’s global portfolio of aircraft will contribute to “our ability to offer significantly better, faster, more flexible, and cost-efficient services to our clients.”

Under a number of SVPs, Genesis has a portfolio of 73 owned all-narrowbody Airbus and Boeing aircraft, placed with 34 customers in 37 countries.

As previously reported, Heston Airlines intends to take delivery of its first A320-200, LY-FJI (msn 2157) (currently ES-LAA, in maintenance at Vilnius), owned by Genesis affiliate CRA Aircraft Ireland, in the first quarter of 2021 and later a second Genesis-owned A320, LY-VUT (msn 2112) (currently LZ-GNF, stored at Shannon).