|Adria leasing CRJ700 for Polish operations|
Slovenia’s national carrier, Adria Airways, has announced plans to open a base in the Polish city of Lodz next year. The airline launched services from Poland’s third largest city to Munich during the 2014 summer season and maintains six weekly flights on the route. Adria’s CEO, Mark Anžur, says the carrier will lease a Bombardier CRJ700 aircraft, which will be stationed at Lodz, and will double its flights to the Bavarian capital next summer season. Furthermore, Adria will inaugurate a daily service from the Polish city to Amsterdam. Lodz is Adria’s second destination in Poland following Warsaw. In addition, Adria is considering commencing subsidised flights from Bydgoszcz, in Poland’s north, to Germany during the 2015 summer season. The CRJ700 has the capacity to seat up to 78 passengers.
In a recent interview, CEO Anžur, said, “Strategically we want to be a European carrier and not only a Slovenian carrier. We are embracing internationalisation. There are many reasons for this. One of them being that the Slovenian market is very limited. Through this segment of our strategy, we expect a 5% increase in our passenger numbers. The Bombardier is an ideal aircraft for regional routes because it acts as an alternative to low cost airlines which can’t make a profit on certain flights with larger Airbus aircraft”. Adria’s expansion into Poland comes only days after the Slovenian carrier announced it would launch several new routes from its bases in Ljubljana and Tirana in 2015.
Adria has had a successful year so far with the addition of two leased CRJ900 NextGen aircraft to its fleet, the launch of several new routes and growth in both passenger and revenue numbers. In addition, this summer, the European Commission found that state aid provided to the Slovenian carrier between 2007 and 2011, to the tune of 79.6 million euros, was in line with European Union regulations. “Our aim is to carry as many satisfied passengers as possible. In the first eight months of the year, just under 740.000 people chose to travel with us, which is up 5% on last year”, CEO Anžur says. He adds, “Results suggest that this year we are on course to, once again, surpass the million passenger milestone, which is further confirmation that we have chosen the right business strategy”. During the first three quarters, Adria carried 712.836 passengrs to and from the Slovenian capital, up 3% on last year. The busiest routes out of its main hub in Ljubljana were Frankfurt and Zurich.