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Itapemirim Transportes Aéreos (ITA) has been authorized by the Brazilian Civil Aviation Authority
The Brazilian Civil Aviation Authority has approved the creation of a new airline, under the name Itapemirim Transportes Aéreos (ITA). The authorization came after more than a year of testing and certification flights. The parent company, Itapemirim, is a long-distance bus company that, in the 1990s, operated six Boeing 727 carriers and two Cessna Caravans.
ITA has announced plans for accelerated growth, with its current fleet of two Airbus A320s to grow to ten aircraft when flights begin in late June. The company plans to serve 35 destinations with A320 and A319 aircraft within a year. The first flights will connect major cities, including Brasilia, São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Curitiba and Salvador.
Itapemirim's bus fleets will allow the integration of air service with the 2.700 cities served by buses. The company painted its first A320, delivered in March, in bright yellow livery similar to that of the bus fleet at Digex MRO in São José dos Campos.
Itapemirim Transportes Aéreos (ITA), a new airline in Brazil
The pandemic seems to have opened up new major markets for ITA. The company will be a low-cost airline, while offering better services with more legroom. The Airbus A320 will be configured with up to 162 seats, and customers will enjoy free check-in for luggage.
Founded in 1957, Itapemirim Group became one of the largest providers of long-distance travel services in Brazil until regulatory changes and the 2008 financial crisis pushed it into debt. The owner, Sidnei Piva de Jesus, and his partners took over the company from bankruptcy in 2015, for a nominal amount and by assuming the debt.
In February 2020, Piva said that an unnamed fund in the United Arab Emirates would invest $ 500 million, but this month it turned out that the amount would come - in fact - from two funds in Qatar, also unnamed. A bank in Kansas City owns the only aircraft the new airline currently owns.