A group of aviation veterans is working to launch an ultra low-cost, Vancouver-based airline called Jetlines, which would offer flights throughout Western Canada.
The new airline will be modelled after low-cost carriers such as Allegiant Air and Spirit Airlines in the U.S. and Ireland-based Ryanair, all of which offer no-frills flights at very low prices.
The vision of David Solloway, Jim Scott and Dix Lawson, Jetlines aims to start by offering low-cost service to areas such as Prince Rupert, Kamloops, Edmonton, Regina and Winnipeg.
Future plans are to fly internationally to Orlando and Las Vegas in the U.S., and to the Mexican destinations of Cabo San Lucas and Cancun.
“We think there’s a vacuum,” said Solloway, whose aviation background includes positions at Canadian Pacific Air Lines and Oasis Hong Kong Airlines and an advisory role with Air China. “We think we can fill it [the low-cost airline vacuum] as a British Columbia-based airline.”
Jetlines launch will be largely dependent on how much interest the founders can generate from private investors and the commercial capital market.
Seed money of one-million dollars is being raised through Robson Capital Markets Advisory, with plans to raise $25-million through Salman Partners Inc. for the airline’s launch.
A further three-stage plan to raise $25-million in each stage is planned.
The plan calls for the airline to launch with two Airbus A319s in the fall of 2014 and, using a fleet of A319s and A320s, expand to 16 aircraft by 2017.