Stobart brings Irish airline to Southend
Stobart Group has contracted a conditional five year operating agreement to allow Aer Arann to operate from its London Southend airport starting in March 2011.
As part of the investment agreement with others, Stobart Group will invest 2.5 million eurosto incentivise and market Aer Arann’s operation from the airport. Stobart will gain a small stake in the form of a convertible preference share in Aer Arann.
The offer remains conditional on terms being satisfied including Aer Arann successfully exiting Examinership which is expected to happen by the end of October.
Stobart chief Andrew Tinkler said: “This is a pragmatic deal. Firstly it will guarantee business and volume that will underpin acceleration of our development plans for London Southend Airport. Secondly it will further develop the Stobart business and brand in Ireland. Thirdly the alignment with Aer Arann provides future opportunities for the growing demand for airfreight from our customers.”
Aer Arann is a household name in Ireland. Stobart reckons its Irish business is currently worth €40m after two years of operating in the region.
Stobart has no plans to move into the airline business or to get involved with the management of Aer Arann.