Varadkar announces 50 Aer Arann jobs

Aer Arann, operator of Aer Lingus Regional, announced 50 new jobs today [Wednesday] as the first of eight new aircraft began operations.

The 50 jobs, and a €144 million deal for the new aircraft, are part of the airline’s ‘new beginning’ strategy which aims to position Aer Arann among Europe’s top tier of regional airlines.

The 50 new jobs, a 15% increase in employee numbers, will cover a range of areas, including flight and cabin crew, engineering and support roles.

Recruitment for the jobs, which will be based at the airline’s headquarters in Dublin and in Dublin Airport, is under way, bringing the company’s overall staff numbers to 370.

Aer Arann, which operates Aer Lingus Regional routes from Cork, Shannon, Kerry and Ireland West Airport, Knock, aims to double its passenger numbers to over two million over the next five years.

The airline has overseen a 32% rise in Aer Lingus Regional passenger numbers in the past 12 months and this year is on track to carry in excess of 1.2 million passengers.

Aer Arann recently moved all flight arrivals and departures to Terminal 2 at Dublin Airport, and now operates from the same terminal as Aer Lingus’ mainline services.

The move facilitates Aer Lingus Regional customers linking to Aer Lingus’ transatlantic services in Terminal 2 – a significant and growing part of the business which is on target to bring 100,000 passengers through Dublin’s newest terminal this year.

Today’s announcement was made by Leo Varadkar TD, Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, and comes as the first of Aer Arann’s new ATR aircraft arrives and operates key Aer Lingus Regional routes this month.

Minister Varadkar said: ‘I am delighted by Aer Arann’s announcement of the creation of 50 new jobs as part of its “new beginning” strategy. Aer Arann is proving that it is possible to operate successfully as a regional airline by linking Ireland with the UK market and beyond. The company is investing in new aircraft, new routes and new jobs. I wish Aer Arann every success in its “new beginning” strategy, and look forward to more positive announcements in the future.’

Minister Varadkar was joined by Seán Brogan, Aer Arann’s Interim Chief Executive Officer; Simon Fagan, Chief Commercial Officer; and Davina Pratt, Chief Operating Officer.

At the announcement, Mr Brogan said the new recruits are the next step on the airline’s growth path.

‘We recently outlined a package of measures to grow Aer Arann as part of our “new beginning” strategy. These measures included a restructuring of the company, significant investment in new aircraft, extension of the franchise agreement with Aer Lingus until 2022, and the addition of new routes to Manchester and Birmingham. Given these measures, an increasing customer base and expanding route network, we now need to grow our team. These new positions mark another milestone in the future of Aer Arann, and we look forward to welcoming our new recruits over the next 12 months.’

Commenting on today’s announcement, Christoph Mueller, Aer Lingus Chief Executive Officer, said: ‘Our franchise partnership with Aer Arann has gone from strength to strength since its inception in 2010. It has enabled Aer Lingus and Aer Arann to work as a team in developing many new routes and increasing the frequency of service on existing routes. The feedback from our customers has been very positive. They enjoy the service, evidenced in the growing passenger numbers. The new fleet will further improve Aer Lingus Regional customers’ experience, and we welcome the announcement of the new jobs that this fleet expansion brings.’

Date: 22. 5. 2013