Republic Airways Holdings

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Republic Airways Holdings
Industry Transportation
Founded 1973
Headquarters Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
Area served North America
Key people Bryan Bedford (CEO)
(Chairman) & (President)
Services Airline Services
Employees In holding company (450)
In all subsidiaries(10000+)
Subsidiaries
Website rjet.com

Republic Airways Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQRJET) is an airline holding corporation based in Indianapolis, Indiana,[1][2] that owns three regional airlines operating in the United States: Chautauqua Airlines, Republic Airlines, and Shuttle America.

Chautauqua Airlines operates a fleet of Embraer ERJ 145 aircraft, while Republic Airlines operates the Embraer E-Jet family 170, 175 and 190 aircraft, and Shuttle America operates the Embraer E-Jet 170 and 175.

History[edit]

Forming the holding company[edit]

The company traces its roots to Chautauqua Airlines, founded in 1973 in Jamestown, New York, by Joel and Gloria Hall. Joel had been a pilot for Mohawk Airlines. Chautauqua was one of the first airlines to fly under code shares, initially with Allegheny Airlines which later became USAirways. [3]

In 1988, an affiliate of Guarantee Security Life Insurance Company bought the airline. Three years later, the Florida Department of Insurance took over the insurance company and its airline subsidiary after the insurance company was declared insolvent.[3]

In 1994, Chautauqua swapped routes with Jetstream International which had been owned by USAir. Chautauqua then moved its headquarters to Indianapolis.[3]

In 1998, the company formally organized as a holding company,[4] with Chautauqua as its only subsidiary. The holding company capitalized on the name Republic from Republic Airlines of the 1980s because it had better national recognition than Chautauqua. However, the earlier Republic Airlines has no historic ties to the new company other than the name.

Wexford Management of Greenwich, Connecticut, an investment company, bought the holding company on May 15, 1998. Wexford had already owned National Airlines [3] and was also invested heavily in Midwest Airlines. Wexford’s interest in distressed airline firms dates back to 1995 when the assets of MarkAir were purchased in a bankruptcy auction.

Republic Airways Holdings incorporated a new subsidiary, "Republic Airline, Inc." (sic), in 1999,[5] but the subsidiary was left as a "shell" company until 2004.

On May 26, 2004, an IPO was launched on NASDAQ under the ticker symbol RJET with Wexford Capital remaining the majority shareholder.[6]

Scope clauses[edit]

In 2004, the holding company activated Republic Airline in reaction to a pilots' suit against American Airlines. American had awarded the flying of 44-seat regional jets to Chautauqua, then the main operating subsidiary of Republic Airways Holdings. However, Chautauqua later started to operate 70-seat regional jets on behalf of another major airline, and this caused American to be in violation of its pilot union scope clause, which prevented another airline from operating on behalf of American if that airline was operating jet aircraft of more than 50 seats, even if such aircraft were operating on behalf of a carrier other than American. To repair the situation, Republic Airways Holdings activated Republic Airline, and upon Part 121 certification in 2005 [7] allowing Republic Airlines to operate commercial service. Republic Airways Holdings then transferred the offending 70-seat regional jets from Chautauqua to Republic Airlines. American was thereby no longer in violation of its pilot union scope clause. Republic Airways Holdings paid US$6.6 million to the Allied Pilots Association to settle the issue.[8]

To sidestep yet another scope clause issue in 2005, Republic Airways Holdings bought Shuttle America from Wexford affiliate Shuttle Acquisition LLC.[6] To avoid further liability, all Embraer 170 aircraft were transferred to Shuttle America, which previously only operated Saab 340 turboprops. Subsequently, American Airlines and its pilots changed the scope agreement as part of the bankruptcy and merger with US Airways to allow more regional airlines, other than wholly owned American Airlines subsidiary American Eagle (now Envoy Air), to fly larger regional airliners under the American Eagle brand. Republic Airlines began flying the first of 47 Embraer 175 aircraft under the American Eagle brand in July 2013.

Further acquisitions[edit]

In September 2005, Republic purchased 113 slots at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, 24 slots at LaGuardia Airport, and ten Embraer 170 aircraft from US Airways with an agreement to lease those assets back to US Airways. The deal was necessary for US Airways to emerge from bankruptcy protection.

In July 2009, Republic acquired 89 percent of Mokulele Airlines[9] and financially troubled Midwest Airlines.[6] In October 2009, the company acquired Frontier Airlines which was being reorganized along with Frontier Airlines Holdings' Lynx Aviation in Chapter 11 bankruptcy.[6] On April 13, 2010, Republic announced that Midwest and Frontier would combine into a single airline, keeping the Frontier Airlines name.[10]

On October 23, 2009, Republic announced a joint venture with Mesa Air Group in which Embraer E170 routes operated by Shuttle America were transitioned to smaller Bombardier CRJ200 regional jet aircraft provided by Mesa Airlines.[6]

In the fourth quarter of 2011, Republic announced that it would spin off Frontier as a separate company.[11] On December 2, 2013, Frontier was sold in its entirety to an affiliate of Indigo Partners. As part of the agreement, Republic Airlines removed the remaining Frontier branded Embraer 190 jets in "pro-rated" service with Frontier Airlines.

On July 28, 2014, Republic Airways Holdings announced that Chautauqua Airlines will be absorbed into Shuttle America "by year-end" to reduce costs. Chautauqua's only remaining aircraft, 41 ERJ-145s, will be transferred to the Shuttle America operating certificate.[12] This will leave only two subsidiaries, Republic Airlines and Shuttle America, flying under Republic Airways Holdings.

Subsidiary timeline[edit]

Codeshare agreements[edit]

Following is a breakdown of traffic upon all Republic Airways Holdings airlines as of December 31, 2013.[13]

Regional Brand Mainline Airline Parent % of Republic Traffic
United Express United Airlines United Continental Holdings 29%
Delta Connection Delta Air Lines Delta Air Lines, Inc 30%
US Airways Express/American Eagle US Airways/American Airlines American Airlines Group 41%

Fleet overview[edit]

Republic Airways Holdings' airlines currently operate 231 regional aircraft.

In February 2010, Republic Airways Holdings became the first North American customer for the Bombardier CSeries regional jet.[14] In 2014, following delays in the CS300 program, Republic expressed doubts in keeping their CS300 order, but announcement that a final decision would be put off.[15] As of September 2014, Republic Airways Holdings has still not indicated which airline subsidiary unit they would be placed with if delivered.

On September 17, 2014, Republic Airways Holdings announced it would stop flying Bombardier Q400 turboprops in 2016. The company ordered E-175s that Republic Airlines will operate for United Express.[16]

Airline Operating as Flight number range Total Aircraft Seats Notes
F Y Total
Chautauqua Airlines Delta Connection DL6000-6099 41 ERJ-145 0 50 50 To be transferred to Shuttle America
Republic Airlines Caesars Entertainment Corporation YX6100-6200 5 Embraer 190 0 99 99
US Airways Express US3100-3499 38 Embraer 175 0 80 80
20 Embraer 170 0 69 69
United Express UA3800-4941 28 Bombardier Q400 0 71/74 71/74 To be retired by September 2016
0 Embraer 175 50 on order; replacing Q400
American Eagle YX4400-4899 33 Embraer 175 0 76 76 14 on order
Shuttle America Delta Connection S5 6000-6299 16 Embraer 175 12 64 76
Delta Shuttle S5 5800-5999 12 Embraer 170 9 60 69
United Express UA3400-3599
UA5100-5199
38 Embraer 170 6 64 70
Company Total 231

Further reading[edit]

  • Sandra Arnoult, "Three Heads are better than One," Air Transport World January 2006, p. 60.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Contact Us". Republic Airways Holdings. Archived from the original on April 30, 2009. Retrieved May 19, 2009. 
  2. ^ "Contact Us". Republic Ariways Holdings. Retrieved June 25, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c d "International Directory of Company Histories, Vol. 38. St. James Press, 2001". 
  4. ^ "Republic Airways Holdings - marketwatch.com". Retrieved February 12, 2010. 
  5. ^ "Republic Airways Holdings Form 10-K for Year Ended December 31, 2004". Retrieved 2013-08-16. 
  6. ^ a b c d e "Republic Airways History - republicwairways.com". Retrieved February 12, 2010. 
  7. ^ "Exhibit99.1 Republic Airlines Certification". Retrieved 2013-08-16. 
  8. ^ "Republic Airways Continues Attack On Pilots Group With Sham Furloughs". 2011-09-08. Retrieved 2013-08-16. 
  9. ^ Segal, Dave (2009-07-31). "Republic Air increases its stake in Mokulele". Honolulu Star-Bulletin. Archived from the original on 2009-08-01. Retrieved 2010-02-12. 
  10. ^ Daykin, Tom (2010-04-13). "New name for Midwest-Frontier airline: Frontier". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved 2010-04-13. 
  11. ^ "Does Frontier Have a Future?". BusinessWeek. 2011-11-08. Archived from the original on 2011-11-10. Retrieved 2012-05-17. 
  12. ^ http://www.ch-aviation.com/portal/news/29947-shuttle-america-to-absorb-chautauqua-airlines
  13. ^ Profile: Republic Airways Holdings Inc (RJET.O) - reuters.com - Retrieved March 16, 2014
  14. ^ Bombardier Inc. (February 25, 2010). "Republic Airways Holdings Becomes First North American Customer for Bombardier CSeries Aircraft with Order for up to 80 Airliners". Retrieved December 18, 2012. 
  15. ^ "Republic puts off decision on CSeries order". 15 May 2014. 
  16. ^ Michael Garko (September 18, 2014). "Republic Airways ending Bombardier Q400 turboprop opations in 2016". Retrieved September 18, 2014. 

External links[edit]