Russia's S7 Airlines is set to launch a new airline on Cyprus that will operate across Europe. Accoding to a report via RBC news, company shareholder, Vladislav Filyov said the new "Charlie Airlines" will begin operations by the latter part of 2016.
The name of the new airline is a bit fascinating, in that Cypriots in the UK are called "Charlie". According to the news, the airline will inititially operate two A319 aircraft, transferred from the S7 fleet. "Charlie Airlines" will also have Cypriot co-owners, which Mr. Filyov was reticent to reveal. This TASS report reveals the Russian shareholders' stake pf about 40%, and the roughly 60% to be held by foreign investors.
The "Charlie Airlines" move is clearly a strategy to enter the European market by circumnavigating tough requirements of the European regulator EASA.S7 being able to operate in Europe will afford the growing airline a potent advantage in the future.
Later last year, Vladislav Filev withdrew from a bid to buy a controlling share of distressed Transaero. The businessman established S7 Group back in 2005, and the company has grown to incorporate some 10 companies specializing in air services, maintenance of aircraft, personnel training, etc.