Grounded Air Omega works on new investment

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German regional carrier Air Omega is in the process of securing new funding after its Air Operator’s Certificate (AOC) was put at “standstill” by German authorities and flights suspended.

The developments have also contributed to delays in the launch of a separate British operation – Air Omega UK – which was to use the German airline’s AOC.

Air Omega, which commenced operations in 2000, operates cargo and passenger flights within Germany using a fleet of three Embraer 120 turboprops. Two of the aircraft operate the cargo services, while the third is configured for passenger operations.

But the carrier’s operations were suspended last month by Germany’s CAA, the Luftfahrt-Bundesamt (LBA) due to a “major change” in the ownership of the airline, according to Air Omega managing director Armin Peuker.

A spokeswoman for the LBA says Air Omega’s AOC is currently at “standstill” and the airline is not flying. However she would not elaborate further.

Peuker explains that the company’s co-founding shareholder left the airline in December, giving up his 50% share of the carrier under terms foreseen at its inception. He says the company is now in the latter stages of investment talks, and expects to reach a solution within the next 10 days.

Air Omega was separately due to launch Air Omega UK this month, initially operating between Aberdeen and London Stansted. But these plans have been postponed.

Peuker says flights for the UK company were to be operated under Air Omega’s German AOC, but with its suspension the plans cannot be pursued for the moment.

He says in the UK market the carrier is planning to use twin jet aircraft – without specifying types - but says the speed of progress for the venture will depend on the time taken by LBA in reviewing the application for jet operations under the company’s AOC. First, however, the financing issues must be resolved.

Avcraft Aviation, which manufactures and services Fairchild Dornier 328JETs, confirms it is “in dialogue” with the airline over its interest in the type.