Gavarnie To Sell Hawaii’s Island Air

 - February 4, 2013, 5:10 AM

Hawaii’s Island Air announced last month that it has entered into an agreement it believes will lead to sale of the company to an undisclosed buyer.

“This is a great opportunity for the future of the company,” said Les Murashige, Island Air’s president. “The company has gone through a number of challenges recently and a new owner will bring a fresh perspective to the company.”

Those challenges include delays in pressing into service a fleet of newly acquired ATR 72-200s and direct competitive threats posed by a new rival ATR operation planned by Hawaiian Airlines.

Murashige added that Island Air’s owner, Honolulu-based Gavarnie Holding, must clear a number of unidentified hurdles before closing the transaction. He expressed optimism that new ownership would take control by late this month or early March, however. “There has been a lot of hard work and due diligence done over the holidays,” he said. “We are prepared to move forward and have been meeting with the relevant groups who have a role in making this happen.”