Blue Islands today announced it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Flybe, Europe’s largest regional airline, to become its third franchise partner with effect from May 2016, operating services in Flybe branded aircraft.
Flybe’s existing franchise partners are Loganair and Stobart Air.
Rob Veron, Blue Islands’ Managing Director said:
“By becoming a franchise partner of Flybe, we will really be able to put Guernsey and Jersey firmly on the radar of potential new visitors and will all benefit from Flybe’s significant marketing bandwidth capabilities”.
“Whilst our aircraft will be re-painted in Flybe livery, we will still remain an independent locally owned air operator continuing to fly all our own aircraft under the Blue Islands AOC (Air Operators Certificate). We will continue to employ all our own crew, undertake all our own maintenance and control our own handling arrangements, and set our own prices.”
Saad Hammad, Flybe CEO added:
“Today’s announcement reflects the long-standing relationship Flybe has with the Channel Islands which can only be deepened by this proposed new partnership. We look forward to welcoming Blue Islands into our expanding franchise family.”
Derek Coates, Chairman and owner of Blue Islands comments:
“Airlines all over the world have improved efficiencies and profitability by forming alliances. What this move will do more than anything else, is to ensure that Blue Islands remains locally owned and viable in the future without the need for any Government support. It is the sensible way forward for any smaller airline to move without loss of slots, ownership or security.”