Virgin Australia said it has reached an agreement in principle to buy a 100-percent stake in Perth, Australia-based Skywest Airlines. Announced on October 30 and still subject to approvals from regulatory authorities and Skywest shareholders, the deal would see the Western Australian regional assume the Virgin Australia brand and, according to Virgin Australia CEO John Borghetti, benefit from further investment by the would-be parent company.
Hurricane Sandy and the subsequent storm that struck the east coast of the U.S. last month forced the world’s largest regional airline company to cancel some 3,100 flights. St. George, Utah-based SkyWest, whose ExpressJet subsidiary flies a network concentrated largely in the eastern half of the U.S., estimates it will lose some $3 million as a result of Sandy and the following week’s Nor’easter.
St. George, Utah-based SkyWest expects to ground 66 fifty-seat Bombardier CRJs and add 34 more dual-class Bombardier jets ranging in seating capacity from 65 to 76 seats under a memorandum of understanding signed with code-share partner Delta Air Lines, the world’s largest regional airline announced today.
A Skywest pilot on administrative leave took his own life after stealing a company Bombardier CRJ200 at Saint George Municipal Airport (SGU), Utah, on July 17. He was wanted by police in connection with the death of his girlfriend in Colorado Springs
Mitsubishi Aircraft received a huge dose of credibility at the Farnborough International airshow yesterday by announcing a 100-aircraft commitment for MRJ90s from the largest regional airline holding company in the world–SkyWest Airlines. The agreement in principle, signed just this week, potentially raises the MRJ regional jet family backlog to 170 airplanes and gives Mitsubishi its second major U.S. customer.
Due to an increasing number of runway incursions two decades ago, such as the February 1991 nighttime collision between a USAir Boeing 737 and a Skywest Metroliner at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), the FAA severely restricted the number of airport control towers authorized to allow a departing aircraft to sit on the runway for any length of time.
GE Aviation has signed a 15-year OnPoint solution agreement with SkyWest Airlines to support the 150 CF34-8C5B1 engines that power the airline’s Bombardier CRJ700s. The agreement is valued at more than $360 million over the life of the contract.
According to a GE spokeswoman, OnPoint solutions are customized service agreements tailored to the operational and financial needs of each customer for any size fleet. “These agreements are designed to help lower the customers’ cost of ownership and maximize the use of their assets,” she said.
Former All Nippon Airways executive Jason Bitter succeeded Mark Shelton as CEO of Perth, Australia-based Skywest Airlines last month. Shelton abruptly resigned from the post “for personal reasons,” according to Skywest Group executive chairman Jeff Chatfield.
Bitter has held a number of high-level executive positions during his 15 years in the airline industry, including COO of SpiceJet, CEO of Skyeurope and chief executive of Air Arabia Maroc. Most recently, he helped launch ANA’s new low-fare subsidiary, Peach Aviation.
St. George, Utah-based SkyWest Airlines began flying as a US Airways Express partner on December 16, when it launched six daily flights from US Airways’ hub in Phoenix. The new three-year contact calls for SkyWest Airlines to operate some 49 flights to 19 destinations by the spring and includes an option for US Airways to switch equipment to CRJ700s.