Pluna successor rebrands to Alas-U

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The association of ex-employees of Uruguay's bankrupt Pluna have announced plans to relaunch the former flag carrier under the Alas-U brand.

Despite fading public support for the launch of an employee-owned Pluna successor airline, the employees' association has presented the new brand and corporate image. This represents a new attempt to revitalise the project while trying to distance the successor airline from pending legal processes against Pluna in Brazil.

The plan was to operate seven ex-Pluna Bombardier CRJ900s with a public grant of $15 million. However, increasing legal uncertainties over Pluna's debts and international liabilities associated with the aircraft, some dating from the 1990s when Varig owned the Uruguayan airline, are still holding back the government from fulfilling the grant.

Recently Uruguay's president Jose Mujica, originally a strong supporter of an employee-owned Pluna successor, started to support Pluna competitor BQB Lineas Aereas's ambitions to take over a number of Pluna's international route authorities when they become available by the end of June.