Brazil's Azul Hopes to Take Over Avianca Brasil's Planes at Lower Lease Rates

Brazilian airline Azul SA hopes to take over 30 of struggling Avianca Brasil’s aircraft at cheaper lease rates, take control of two-thirds of Avianca’s airport slots and rehire many of its workers, while avoiding its crippling debts and any labor disputes, Chief Executive John Rodgerson said on Thursday. If the bid is successful, it would restructure the domestic Brazilian air travel market, reducing the number of big players from four to three, Reuters reported. It would also allow Azul to become a big competitor in Brazil’s most desirable domestic airports - Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo - which have profitable routes but where available airport slots are hard to come by. Rodgerson said the domestic routes Azul would operate in would represent a “back to the basics” move for the struggling carrier, which expanded to unprofitable international markets in recent years. Read more