A Southern California commuter flight service, Float Shuttle, is set to take over the large planes and regional service once operated by RavnAir Group, which declared bankruptcy amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Float Shuttle is spending $8 million to buy six of the Dash-8 planes and two of the “Part 121” federal operating certificates that Ravn’s airlines, Corvus and PenAir, once used to fly passengers from Anchorage to the Aleutian Islands, the Kenai Peninsula and an array of other rural Alaska destinations, a Ravn attorney, Jane Kim, announced at a bankruptcy hearing Thursday.
“This is a way for us to do what we had hoped to do which is be able to resume Part 121 operations in the state of Alaska, and get employees rehired,” she said.
Kim indicated that Float Shuttle intends to take advantage of a $31.6 million payroll support loan that the Trump administration has offered to a Ravn successor. The $8 million is far below the $19 million that Ravn had originally asked as a minimum bid at a failed auction for the certificates and nine of the Dash-8 planes.
Kim did not release any additional details, such as when Float Shuttle aims to resume regularly scheduled service, which has been suspended by Ravn since it declared bankruptcy in April.
Float Shuttle, which stands for “FLy Over All Traffic,” runs commuter service for Southern California drivers who want to avoid time in traffic by flying on the company’s Cessna Caravans. Monthly subscriptions cost $1,250, according to its website.
Ravn, which had 72 planes and 1,300 employees, served more than 100 communities before its bankruptcy and was Alaska’s largest rural air service. Dozens of its smaller planes were sold at an auction Tuesday.
This is a breaking news story — check back for updates.