Express One International
|Hubs||Orlando Sanford International Airport|
|Headquarters||Orlando, Florida, United States|
Express One International is an airline based in Orlando, Florida, USA. It operates domestic and international cargo services and charter passenger services throughout the USA, Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean, as well as wet and dry leasing. Its main base is Orlando Sanford International Airport.
The airline was established and started operations in 1983 by Alinda and Jim Wikert as Jet East International flying one Boeing 727-100 on a contract from DHL. At its peak, the company was flying freight with over 20 Boeing 727s and passengers in several Douglas DC-9s from hubs in Austin, Texas, Indianapolis, Indiana, Atlantic City, New Jersey, and Brussels, Belgium when in 2000 it was purchased by Orchard Capital. Express One also leased two Boeing 727-200 jetliners in passenger configuration to a new start-up air carrier, Western Pacific Airlines.
By the end of the 1990s, the company's fleet had grown to some 28 aircraft and charter operations were flown between Europe, Australia and New Zealand, and the USA. It also flew to Asia for the U.S. government.
2001 was a difficult year for the company and by July several key contracts expired without renewal. A severe blow was dealt in August 2001 when the United States Postal Service cancelled its contracts with its existing carriers and turned these duties over to FedEx. The company saw a short reprieve when Emery Worldwide suddenly eliminated their own airline in favor of using contract carriers and Express One received a short-term contract to carry freight until the end of 2001. Having secured little new business by the end of the year, the company removed most of their aircraft from service and furloughed the vast majority of their employees to conserve resources, however this was not enough to prevent them from filing for bankruptcy and ceasing operations by mid-2002.
In 2002, a group of six investors, headed by Richard C. Byers and Larry Brinker, purchased all the company's common stock, assets, training programs and intellectual properties, as well as their name, logo, property and operating certificate and the company was moved to Orlando Sanford International Airport in Florida.
In July 2004 the airline acquired Central Florida Air Maintenance to serve as the home maintenance base.
In February 2008, Express One and Joseph Kuchta were debarred from government contracting as a result of collusive bidding conduct and fraud. Express One's debarment expired 31 January 2010 and Joseph Kuchta's debarment continued until Jan 31, 2013.
The airline is owned by Joseph D. Kuchta (25%), Richard Byers, Chairman and President (25%), Ronald Gray, Secretary and Treasurer (25%) and Stan G. Helton, Executive VP of Sales, Marketing and Communication (25%) and has 109 employees (at March 2007).
The Express One International fleet consists of the following aircraft (at April 2014):
In August 2006 the airline also operated: