It has been confirmed that IAG has sold BMI Regional for £8 million cash by Aberdeen-based aviation consortium, Sector Aviation Holdings. The sale includes all the airline’s fixed assets and long-term liabilities, including owned and operating lease aircraft.
If the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) approves the sale, ownership is expected to be transferred to SAH within two weeks.
IAG acquired the airline, together with Bmibaby, as part of its purchase of BMI last month and had been looking offload it since. There was much speculation that it would have to close the airline if a buyer was not found quickly, putting around 330 jobs at risk. The fate of Bmibaby still hangs in the balance, however, as a buyer is yet to be found.
IAG chief executive Willie Walsh said of the sale: “This deal provides a future for BMI Regional and should secure around 330 jobs”.
The Scottish Passenger Agents’ Association (SPAA) has welcomed the news, particularly the reports which say the new owners plan to develop the route network.
SPAA President Kevin Thom said: “There is real strength-in-depth in the new ownership and management team of BMI Regional.
“The new owners are known for their commitment to the area, and it augurs well for the future of this vital network of business and leisure air services from Scotland’s northeast, and for the job security of several hundred hardworking employees.
“It’s an excellent outcome – for Scotland’s travellers and the Scottish economy – and one that we warmly welcome. We’re confident our Members will do all they can to continue and strengthen their long-established support of BMI Regional, under the new ownership.”