A European long-haul start-up is seeking $30-50 million of institutional investment to launch transatlantic scheduled services when the market between the USA and Europe improves.

A group of entrepreneurial backers, mostly based in Monaco, has provided seed capital for the airline, named Riviera Jet, to develop its route and fleet planning. Chief executive Thomas Bonetti says the carrier would be prepared to launch services before the end of 2004 if market conditions permit, but will wait for signs of an upturn.

Riviera Jet plans a low-fare, two-class service and has started talking to lessors about the acquisition of either Airbus A330-200s or Boeing 767-300ERs. It plans growth to five aircraft and five routes after three years. Initial services will be between Nice, France, and Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Either Amsterdam, Berlin, Brussels or London Stansted will be the first northern European destination.

Source: Flight International