The distinctive purple livery of Iceland's Wow Air appears
to be returning to the skies.
Virginia-based USAerospace Associates has finalized an
agreement to purchase the brand, six months after Wow went bankrupt in March.
During a press conference last week, USAerospace Associates
chairman Michele Ballarin declined to reveal the purchase price for the failed
airline, but she said that USAeropsace has allocated $85 million to restart
"We have solid financial commitment. It's all equity,
no debt," Ballarin said.
Ballarin said Wow will relaunch with two aircraft and that
the first flight will link Washington Dulles and Reykjavik's Keflavik Airport.
"We look forward to seeing our first flights in
October," she said.
Dulles spokesman Micah Lillard said no Wow flights are
currently scheduled out of the airport, though airport officials did hold an
initial meeting with Ballarin in August.
Ballarin said the revamped Wow will continue to offer low-cost
flying but not a bare-bones service approach. Customers shouldn't have to pay
for water, she said. The airline will focus on a nutritious food service. And
Ballarin said she has requested lounge space at Dulles and Keflavik. Unlike
other airlines, which reserve lounges for premium customers, Wow lounges would
be open to all customers.
Wow began U.S. operations in 2015 and by summer 2018 served
Iceland from 13 U.S. airports. But the carrier's finances imploded. By the time
Wow ceased operations on March 28, only four of those routes remained.
Ballarin said she doesn't believe the closure has damaged
the Wow brand.
"I think people miss the ability to go out to Keflavik
and get on a purple airplane and fly somewhere," she said.
She said her goal is for Wow to fly four aircraft by next
summer and then to gradually grow its fleet to a 10 to 12 jets.
The airline will be based jointly in Reykjavik and at Dulles.