Nation & World

JetBlue founder raising funds for new airline: reports

Moxy Airways could be flying in 2020

Bloomberg

David Neeleman stands on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange in New York in 2017.
Bloomberg David Neeleman stands on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange in New York in 2017.

After a decade of industry consolidation, David Neeleman, one of aviation’s famed entrepreneurs, sees room for a new low-cost U.S. airline focused on reducing travel hassles by using smaller airports, according to two industry reports.

The proposed airline, currently dubbed Moxy Airways, has secured orders for 60 CS300 aircraft from Canada’s Bombardier, and is raising $100 million to begin flying in 2020, Airline Weekly reported late Sunday, citing people familiar with the matter.

The Neeleman-led investor group also is soliciting proposals from Chinese lessors to finance 18 of the aircraft for delivery between 2020 and 2022, London-based Airfinance Journal first reported on June 11, citing multiple unnamed sources familiar with the new venture.

It’s unclear how far along Neeleman is in developing the new airline. He also helped to establish JetBlue Airways, Morris Air, WestJet Airlines and Brazil’s Azul.

Neeleman declined to comment, Airline Weekly said. He didn’t return an email from Bloomberg News Monday seeking comment.

Moxy has told investors it will sell only point-to-point flights to keep down costs, according to a presentation cited by Airline Weekly. But the airline isn’t seeking to mimic ultra low-cost carriers such as Allegiant Travel or Spirit Airlines. Instead, Moxy probably would be more in line with Neeleman’s past ventures at Azul and JetBlue, where spacious seats and free Wi-Fi combine with some fees for extra services, such as snacks or seat assignments, Airline Weekly reported.

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