British regional airline, bmi regional, has won the prestigious Silver Airline of the Year award at the annual European Regions Airline Association (ERAA) conference in Salzburg, Austria.
Claimed to be the UK’s most punctual airline, bmi regional, a former subsidiary of British Midland International (BMI), became independent from BMI in June 2012, and established its own operational, commercial and support infrastructure within four months. Within a year, bmi regional has launched 12 new routes across the UK and Europe, including routes from the UK to Hamburg, Milan, Munich, Toulouse, Gothenburg, Lyon and Billund.
The judging panel, consisting of independent industry experts including former airline CEOs and aviation journalists, commended the way bmi regional has re-launched itself as a successful standalone operator.
Cathal O’Connell, CEO of bmi regional, said: ‘Winning this award is a special honour for the airline. It is a testament to the commitment of every member of the team at bmi regional in the eighteen months since we became an independent airline: what we have achieved in the last year or so has been nothing short of incredible. The airline has demonstrated how a dedicated team can act quickly and decisively to implement the commercial and operational infrastructure necessary to create a flexible and efficient airline. I would like to personally thank the bmi regional team for all their hard work, and, of course, our customers and trade partners for their loyalty and support during this huge transition period.’
He added: ‘bmi regional now has the agility of a start-up business with the heritage of a great brand, whilst continuing to deliver a quality offering to our customers across eight European countries. This award is especially meaningful for bmi regional because it comes directly from our peers in the airline business.’
Commenting on bmi regional’s receipt of the award, the judging panel said: ‘The airline has managed to survive and develop through a dramatic period of transformation. Their re-launch and cutover to a stand-alone airline was effectively executed in a short timeframe. It has established itself as a reliable airline with an expanding network.’
Shaun Browne, aviation director at Bristol Airport, said: ‘We are delighted that bmi regional has been recognised and awarded Silver Airline of the year at the annual European Regions Airline Association (ERAA) conference. Since bmi regional developed an airline base at Bristol Airport they have worked hard to appeal to both business and leisure travellers and encourage additional inbound visitors to the South West and South Wales regions. This award is a demonstration of their hard work and commitment during the recent transition period.’
The ERAA Airline of the Year Award is the most widely recognised industry award in the aviation sector today.