By the Caribbean Journal staff
Grand Cayman-based airline startup BlueSky has pushed back its launch date due to the recent demise of European plane lessor Eurolot, it said this week.
The company said Eurolot had been contracted to supply the first two planes for BlueSky’s fleet.
“Due to recent events there, culminating with the Polish government’s announcement that it will liquidate Eurolot by the end of March 2015, BlueSky’s Board of Directors determined that its lease agreement with Eurolot for Bombardier Q400 aircraft was no longer viable and terminated the contract,” the company said in a release.
BlueSky said it was now “intensifying its search for alternative aircraft.”
The company has already “accelerated” negotiations for new Bombardier Q400s becoming available over the next few months, it said.
“While the negotiations for aircraft continues, BlueSky is working closely with the Cayman Islands Civil Aviation Authority (CAACI) and the Air Transport Licensing Authority (ATLA) to complete the regulatory process,” the company said.
In a statement, BlueSky Airlines’ Chairman Kenny Rankin said that once the new planes were secured “we will announce our planned launch date as well as our intended date to commence reservations and ticket sales, all subject to government approvals.”
Rankin also said the launch delay had led to a restructuring and streamlining of the company, one which included some redundancies.
“Once alternative Bombardier Q400 aircraft are contracted, we intend to restore the redundant positions and expand the organization in preparation for the launch of our scheduled airline operations,” he said. “The airline remains fully operational and we look forward to completing the regulatory process and to receiving our operating certificate later in 2015.”