Rex Buys Ticket To Recovery With Boeing Fleet Expansion

Singapore controlled regional airline, Rex has stepped up its move into the domestic main trunk line jet routes where it will take on Qantas and Virgin.

Rex yesterday told the ASX that it had signed Letters of Intent with two Lessors for the lease of six Boeing 737-800 NG aircraft.

Rex said the first 737 will be delivered on November 1 this year with the remaining five aircraft being phased in over the following four months in readiness for the launch of Rex’s domestic jet operations in early 2021.

Rex’s Deputy Chairman, John Sharp said in the statement, “Today I am pleased to announce that we have selected the Boeing 737-800 NG as the aircraft for our domestic jet operations. These aircraft are well received by passengers and have proven to be very suitable for operations in Australia”.

“Three of these aircraft will be deployed in the first phase of our launch on 1 March 2021 on the Sydney – Melbourne route, with another two aircraft beginning service before Easter. From there, Rex will continue to grow the domestic fleet in line with the return of passenger demand and hopes to see its fleet of 737-800 NGs reach ten by year-end.”

“The signing of these letters marks another significant milestone for our entry into the domestic jet market. Our preparations are progressing very well and on schedule and we hope to obtain regulatory approval by December. Advanced ticket sales are also envisaged for December, subject to regulatory approval.”

Rex recently signed a long-form term sheet with the investment firm PAG Asia Capital to entirely fund its domestic jet operations.

Rex shares went into a trading halt for yesterday’s announcement. The shares rose 2.3% to $1.30 after they came out of the halt.

That was a rare gain on a day when the wider market slumped 2.3% to end the quarter deeply in the red.

About Glenn Dyer

Glenn Dyer has been a finance journalist and TV producer for more than 40 years. He has worked at Maxwell Newton Publications, Queensland Newspapers, AAP, The Australian Financial Review, The Nine Network and Crikey.

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