A start-up carrier which plans to compete with Air Greenland and introduce low-cost flights to Greenland is understood to have finally made a formal application for slots and licences to inaugurate passenger flights later this year. Greenland Express had planned to begin services at an earlier date but recent elections in the country delayed the official formation of the carrier with the Transport Ministry.
With Greenland’s new government in place, a meeting in late April gave the green light for the privately-owned carrier to complete the final stages of its start-up process after it was provided rights to serve a number of international markets. The project is being spearheaded by Gert Brask, who has previously held chief executive positions at Iglolik and Canada Hus, while Bas Dankers, Neil Nagarkar, M. Den Ouden, B.J. Umeria, and B.J. Channer have been listed as company directors since December 2012.
According to reports, Greenland Express is understood to have now completed the next stage of its application process and is now finalising access into a number of markets. In a local news story, Bas Dankers, Commercial Director, Greenland Express said: “In a short while we should thus receive confirmation and then we will be able to confirm the exact schedule. But all systems and equipment are on standby so all that remains is to push the button in order to go fully operational.”
Our Board includes seven members with global financial expertise and heavyweight aviation knowledge, all playing an active role in the management of the airline and committed to creating a sustainable business model to cater for the Greenlandic people and international tourists,” he added.
Greenland Express executives say the start-up’s aim is “to become Greenland’s preferred affordable passenger airline” boasting connectivity options for the people of Greenland to travel abroad and to encourage people from all over the world to visit and enjoy the rich culture of Greenland and everything it has to offer. “We intend to be a responsible partner by supporting an essential part of Greenland’s economy, providing necessary infrastructure for growth in tourism and trade,” they say.
The airline plans to initially introduce flights to Denmark with connections from Narsarsuak and Kangerlussuaq to Aalborg and Narsarsuak to Copenhagen. The first phase of its development will also see domestic flights between Narsarsuak and Kangerlussuaq; links to Keflavik in Iceland from both cities as well as an onward connection between Keflavik and Aalborg. It is reported to be acquiring a single Airbus A320 Family aircraft on a six month ACMI deal with an unidentified European operator and will offer up to three rotations per week on each route. Subject to the success of its initial operations the venture plans to add additional destinations including markets in “Germany, England, Canada, the Netherlands and beyond,” it says.