Qantas to Purchase and Grow WA Charter Operator

Sydney, 13 December 2010

Qantas will move into the Western Australian fly-in-fly-out (FIFO) resources air charter market, with agreement reached for the airline to purchase local operator Network Aviation.

Qantas Chief Executive Officer, Mr Alan Joyce, said the acquisition would provide a strong growth opportunity, new revenue stream and further diversification for the Qantas Group.

"The Qantas Group has a very strong presence in Western Australia, operating passenger services across metropolitan and regional centres and connecting the state to its broader domestic and international networks," Mr Joyce said.

"Mining company demand for FIFO air services to transport employees to and from remote sites within the state, however, cannot be met solely by Regular Passenger Transport (RPT) services.

"This is an important market, and a growth market, and Qantas will now become a key player in meeting the needs of the resources sector. This will significantly enhance the scope of what Qantas can offer the mining sector, bringing new competition to the marketplace.

"We have reached agreement with the owners of Network Aviation to purchase the business. It presents strong growth opportunities and we will immediately look at significantly growing its fleet and its operations."

Network Aviation operates a fleet of two 100-seat Fokker 100 aircraft and six 30-seat Embraer Brasilia EMB-120ER aircraft.

Subject to finalisation of the acquisition, Network Aviation will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Qantas Group.

Network Aviation will retain its current management, employees and operating structure, with the business to be aligned with Qantas' operations in terms of safety, regulatory, people, financial and commercial governance oversight, standards and processes.

"This is very much a strategic acquisition and an exciting growth opportunity for Qantas," Mr Joyce said.

Issued by Qantas Corporate Communication (5055)