20 December 2014

Announcing the arrival of Kiwi Regional Airlines?

The former Kiwi Air owner pushing to get a new airline in the sky says he has all the money needed to get underway. He also has a new name and livery for the airline. Ewan Wilson announced the planned 2016 launch of the newly-named Kiwi Regional Airlines at the start of the month after Air New Zealand announced it would pull out of some regional routes. Wilson said two investors had since joined the ride, meaning the airline had enough money to apply for its air operating certificate. The first investor to join, 2 Cheap Cars, is a used-car importer and retailer, which rated as the second-fastest growing company in the country on this year's Deloitte Fast 50. It is projecting $40 million in sales this financial year. The second investor is yet to be announced. Wilson said obtaining the certificate would take four to five months. After that, he would "try to attract some additional investors" so the airline could buy its own planes. In the meantime work would continue on making contact with regional airports, and getting the load factor and yield data from Air New Zealand to determine routes, he said. Air New Zealand said it was losing $1m a month on routes run by the 19-seat Beech 1900D aircraft, and would scrap Kaitaia, Whakatane and Westport services from April. Whangarei to Wellington, Taupo to Wellington, Palmerston North to Nelson will also be scrapped, and Hamilton to Auckland will be gone from February 2016. Wilson was convicted on four counts of fraud when his previous foray into aviation hit the skids two years after launching. The no-frills Kiwi International Airlines launched in 1994 offering a trans-Tasman service. It collapsed in 1996 leaving thousands of travellers grounded with worthless tickets. He remains the sole director of the new Kiwi Regional Airlines until the investors chose to take up their reserved directorships. The Hamilton City Councillor says he has no plans to resign should the airline take off. 

A photo of the proposed livery can be seen at : http://www.stuff.co.nz/waikato-times/news/64345156/Owner-has-investor-backing-to-get-Kiwi-Regional-Airlines-launched

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