New Neeleman airline to start flights in 2021

Breeze Airways, founded by David Neeleman, whose departure from TAP was recently announced, is expected to begin flights in 2021, a launch that was delayed by the Covid-19 pandemic, Bloomberg said today.

Rafael Marchante / Reuters

According to the agency, the low-cost airline, based in the United States, is trying to purchase the operational certificate of Compass Airlines, which has already been extinguished, speeding up the start of operations with charter flights for October. The company predicts that scheduled flights will not start until 2021.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the delivery of the Airbus A220-300 aircraft, which will be the company's main model, has been delayed for six months, expected to arrive in mid-August 2021.

On July 03, the Brazilian airline Azul, owned by David Neeleman, announced the sale of 6% of TAP, under the agreement between the State and private shareholders, which "guarantees the continuation" of the company, according to a statement.

Thus, Azul “announces having reached an agreement with the Portuguese Government to allow an injection of vital capital into TAP SGPS. The agreement consists of the sale of Azul's indirect stake in TAP of 6%, for approximately R $ 65 million [10,8 million euros] ”, as well as the“ elimination of the right to convert ”the senior bonds held“ by the 90 million euros due in 2026, ”said Azul, in the same note.

The previous day, the Government had advanced that it had reached an agreement with TAP's private shareholders, now holding 72,5% of the airline's capital, for 55 million euros.

With this agreement, the State increases its stake in TAP from the current 50% to 72,5%.

At a press conference at the time, the Secretary of State for the Treasury, Miguel Cruz, stated that the State will pay the amount of 55 million euros, which is intended for resignation by Atlantic Gateway, a consortium formed by David Neeleman and Humberto Pedrosa , to the “exercise of options to withdraw from the shareholders' agreement”.

The owner of the Azul airline, David Neeleman, leaves TAP's shareholder structure, keeping only Humberto Pedrosa, owner of the Barraqueiro group.

The European Commission approved on 10 June a “Portuguese emergency aid” to TAP, a state support of up to 1.200 million euros to respond to “immediate liquidity needs” with predetermined conditions for its repayment.

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