Indianapolis-based Republic Airways plans to consolidate its Chautauqua Airlines operation into its Shuttle America subsidiary in an effort to cut costs through a reduction of its air operator certificates to two from three. Company CEO Bryan Bedford sent a letter to employees in late July announcing the company’s intention to migrate Chautauqua’s 41 fifty-seat Embraer ERJ-145s to Shuttle America by year-end.
Republic Airways’ efforts to “restructure” its Indianapolis-based Chautauqua Airlines subsidiary appear to have yielded their intended results. During a November 1 conference call to discuss the company’s third-quarter earnings, Republic CEO Bryan Bedford reported that the regional airline holding company has found a way to mitigate future negative cash flows at Chautauqua by some $45 million over five years, largely by reaching new business agreements with several “key stakeholders ” and returning idled aircraft to revenue service.
The pilots of Republic Airways voted to accept the International Brotherhood of Teamsters as their collective bargaining representative by a 68-percent margin, according to a tally taken in late June.
Now that his company has joined the ranks of the major airlines with its takeover of Frontier and Midwest Airlines, an admission by Republic Airways CEO Bryan Bedford of a “jaundiced view” of the small regional jet market might not come as a surprise.
Mesa Air Group will take a controlling stake in Republic Airways subsidiary Mokulele Airlines under the terms of a deal signed yesterday that will see three Republic/Shuttle America Embraer E170s exit the Mokulele fleet next month in favor of Bombardier CRJs flown by Mesa’s Hawaiian subsidiary, Go!. Under the terms of the contract, Mesa will take a 75-percent interest in the joint venture and Republic a 25-percent share.
Hawaii’s Island Air will fly de Havilland Dash 8s between Kahului, Maui, Lihue, Kauai and Hilo as Go!Express under the terms of a tentative code-share deal it signed with Mesa Air Group in late February.
Republic Airways CEO Bryan Bedford’s characterization of the Chautauqua Airlines pilots’ vote in favor of US Airways’ “Jets for Jobs” arrangement as “a day late and a dollar short” prompted Teamsters Local 747 representatives to mail strike ballots to the 700-strong pilot group. The union planned to count the ballots on June 20.
Pan Am International Flight Academy (PAIFA) and Saab Aircraft of America signed an agreement to jointly develop maintenance training courses for North and South American operators of the Saab 340 twin turboprop. Courses, available on demand, will be held at the customer’s location or at PAIFA’s regional airline training centers located in Dulles, Va., and Minneapolis.
America West’s decision to close its hub in Columbus, Ohio, has forced it to sever its relationship with code-share partner Chautauqua Airlines. Between early April and mid-June, America West will gradually downsize the hub to a planned four mainline flights per day, a development that freed Chautauqua’s 12 Columbus-based Embraer ERJ-145s to fly as Delta Connection, starting April 1.
Less than six months after Shuttle America filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, the Windsor Locks, Conn.-based de Havilland Dash 8 operator signed a new code-share agreement with US Airways covering new service from Boston Hanscom Field to Philadelphia and Trenton, N.J.
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