PHOENIX - Mesa Air Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: MESA) today announced the entry into service of the first two of 14 seventy-six seat Bombardier CRJ-900 Next Generation aircraft. The aircraft will be operated for Delta Connection by Mesa's wholly-owned subsidiary, Freedom Airlines. The operation of the new aircraft was announced in March 2007 and represents an expansion of the Mesa's existing agreement with DeltaAir Lines.
"It was great to see these new aircraft with their exciting NextGen interiors commence service yesterday," says Mesa Air Group Chairman and CEO, Jonathan Ornstein. "Everyone at Mesa is delighted Delta has given us the opportunity to expand our partnership. Once all 14 aircraft are delivered, we will operate a total of 50 aircraft under the Delta Connection banner. Mesa is also the only regional airline to operate this type of aircraft for two major airline partners. We believe our industry leading low costs and commitment to service will allow us to continue to expand our operations with existing partners as well as develop new partnerships in the future," Ornstein adds.
The first two aircraft were delivered last month and are configured with 12 first class and 64 coach class seats and begin revenue service today operating in the New York, JFK and Dallas-Fort Worth market. The remaining 12 aircraft are scheduled to be delivered over the next 16 months.
"I would like to thank the entire team at Freedom for their hard work and commitment to great customer service which has contributed to the growth and strength of our relationship with Delta and to the arrival of these exciting new CRJ-900s," says Freedom Airlines President, Jorn Bates.
The CRJ-900 NextGen aircraft has an enhanced interior including energy efficient LED lighting, larger cabin windows, redesigned ceiling and sidewall panels, and larger overhead luggage bins.
Freedom currently operates 36 Embraer 145LR, 50 seat aircraft and two Bombardier 76 seat CRJ-900 aircraft with over 200 daily flights for Delta Connection under separate agreements.
Mesa currently operates 184 aircraft with over 1,100 daily system departures to 184 cities, 45 states, the District of Columbia, Canada, the Bahamas and Mexico. Mesa operates as Delta Connection, US Airways Express and United Express under contractual agreements with Delta Air Lines, US Airways and United Airlines, respectively, and independently as Mesa Airlines and go!. In June, 2006 Mesa launched inter-island Hawaiian service as go!. This operation links Honolulu to the neighbor island airports of Hilo, Kahului, Kona and Lihue. Mesa is a partner of Shenzhen Airlines in Kunpeng Airlines which operates regional jet passenger services in the People's Republic of China. The Company, founded by Larry and Janie Risley in New Mexico in 1982, has approximately 5,000 employees and was awarded Regional Airline of the Year by Air Transport World magazine in 1992 and 2005. Mesa is a member of the Regional Airline Association and Regional Aviation Partners.