Posted on: 04 September 2014 by Mark Howells
American Airlines has decided that its two subsidiaries which fly regional jets under the American Eagle brand are to operate a single fleet type, with all Bombardier CRJs being flown by PSA Airlines and Envoy Air flying all Embraer ERJs.
The move means the transfer of 47 Bombardier CRJ700s from Envoy to PSA, whose president, Dion Flannery, noted in a letter to employees, “This is a proud moment for our great regional airline as we continue to grow our operations for American. The move will allow each airline to more efficiently focus their operations on a single aircraft type, which streamlines operations and will greatly cut costs of feeding American’s mainline system.
“This transition is a rational and prudent move that underscores American’s pursuit of merger synergies and PSA's track record as a reliable and effective Bombardier CRJ operator,” Flennery continued. “American plans to begin transferring these aircraft to PSA beginning in mid-2015, and while the exact timeline and rate at which the aircraft will shift from Envoy isn’t finalised, they anticipate that the transition will be completed by the end of 2016.”
PSA is in the process of receiving 30 new Bombardier CRJ900s ordered by American.
In a letter to his colleagues, Pedro Fábregas, president & CEO, Envoy Air, commented, “This change will simplify Envoy’s operation considerably and lower America Air Group’s overall costs, therefore enhancing profitability. While it is too early to determine the exact impact that this change will have on Envoy and our people, we know that we will need to adjust staffing. For most groups, we believe that normal attrition will address much of these staffing changes. In some cases, there may be displacements from one location to another.
“Envoy remains a very important partner to American, as we are the largest of its regional partners. But we will need to be efficient to remain its largest partner,” Fabregas emphasised.
Envoy had been competing to operate the 60 Embraer 175s that American ordered last December, but the airline’s pilots rejected the associated contract proposal from the parent company. Of those aircraft, 20 have since been designated for operation by Compass Airlines beginning in early 2015.