Big changes are ahead for Mexican regional carrier Aeromar Airlines, with the company announcing an order for eight new ATR turboprops and an investment of up to $100 million from Synergy Aerospace.
The Mexico City-based carrier expects to take delivery of the eight ATRs by the first half of 2017, Aeromar chief executive Andres Fabre announced during the ALTA Airline Leaders Forum in Mexico City today.
The eight aircraft consist of two ATR 42-600s and six ATR 72-600s, plus options for another six aircraft – a deal with a value at list prices of up to $360 million, says Fabre.
Aeromar, an all-ATR operator, has in recent months embarked on an expansion that has seen the airline launch additional routes, including to the USA. Fabre has been chief executive since April, when he succeeded Fernando Flores.
"Aeromar has been in an ambitious programme of growth," Fabre says, adding that the new ATRs will help Aeromar add routes and increase frequencies on existing sectors.
Aeromar's expansion will be propelled with the $100 million investment from Synergy, which owns a majority stake in Avianca and intends to acquire up to 49% of Aeromar.
Synergy owner German Efromovich says the investment, which remains subject to government approval, will see Synergy first acquire 25% of Aeromar's shares and then acquire another 24%.
Aeromar's Fabre says the funds will help Aeromar continue a strategy of expansion on regional routes.
"We believe regional aviation in Mexico has potential," he says.
The investment will help Aeromar "fill a vacuum in regional aviation", enabling the carrier to add more routes that are currently not served by jet aircraft, adds Efromovich.
Aeromar, he says, will "fill the gap in regional airports where demand is not sufficient for larger aircraft".
Efromovich also clarifies that Synergy, not Avianca, is making the investment.