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BRITISH AIRWAYS PURCHASES DAN AIR, HUNDREDS OF JOBS SAVED AT GATWICK

BRITISH AIRWAYS PURCHASES DAN AIR, HUNDREDS OF JOBS SAVED AT GATWICK
 NEW YORK, Oct. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- British Airways today announced it had reached agreement to buy all the assets of Dan Air, principally the scheduled services operated from Gatwick Airport in London.
 The arrangement, when it is completed, will secure the future role of Gatwick as a major international hub by maintaining a viable network of scheduled routes. It will also safeguard British Airways' operations at the airport, in line with the airline's overall global strategy, and will save hundreds of jobs.
 The agreement follows an announcement by Davies & Newman Holdings, owners of the airline, that it has decided to close down Dan-Air's charter business and some of its scheduled routes, which will have been effected prior to completion of the deal.
 British Airways will pay a nominal 1 pound sterling for Davies & Newman's remaining assests, but will assume its remaining liabilities, including the cost of scaling down its operations.
 The arrangement, which is conditional on clearance by the UK competition authorities, means the key routes in Dan-Air's scheduled network based at Gatwick will continue to be served - with no disruption in service.
 The routes involved include those between Gatwick and Aberdeen, Athens, Brussels, Madrid, Manchester, Montpellier, Paris, Rome, Toulouse, Vienna and Zurich, and between London Heathrow and Inverness.
 Until the arrangement is completed, likely to be in a few weeks, the Gatwick Dan-Air flights will continue to be operated from the airport's South Terminal.
 All tickets and reservations on Dan-Air routes will remain valid for travel.
 This move is the first stage in British Airways' strategy to create a new, low-cost airline dedicated to the continuation and further development of a major network of shorthaul services at Gatwick.
 The subsidiary will operate the Dan-Air scheduled Gatwick routes using a fleet of 12 modern Boeing 737 aircraft. It will also operate the existing 10 British Airways Gatwick-based shorthaul routes, with its fleet of 10 Boeing 737s.
 The plan is to progressively standardize this fleet on the most modern Series 400 version of the twinjet, and consolidate operations at Gatwick's North Terminal.
 This new business will operate under the British Airways' brand and to its worldwide customer service standards.
 Continued employment will be offered to between 400 and 600 of Dan- Air's employees.
 British Airways' intercontinental services from Gatwick are unaffected.
 Sir Colin Marshall, British Airways' deputy chairman and chief executive, said: "The opportunity to save Dan-Air's scheduled network coincides with our own objective of reducing significantly the costs of our shorthaul operations at Gatwick.
 "We have made good progress towards this goal in the past 18 months or so - we now have a means for achieving it, safeguarding our shorthaul operations at the airport in the long term."
 In the year to Dec. 31, 1991, Davies & Newman Holdings PLC reported a pre-tax loss of 35.4 million pounds sterling on revenues of 325.3 million pounds sterling. In the six months to June 30, 1992, it incurred an estimated operating loss of 24 million pounds sterling.
 British Airways will fund the costs of the arrangement from cash reserves. The effect on the company's net debt to total equity ratio will be marginal. From the date of completion, the operations joining the British Airways group will be consolidated into the group's profit and loss account.
 -0- 10/23/92
 /CONTACT: Sandy Gardiner, 718-397-4725, or Marge Vodopia, 718-397-4731, both of British Airways/
 (BAB) CO: British Airways; Dan Air ST: New York IN: AIR SU: TNM


SM -- NY012 -- 4036 10/23/92 09:47 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 23, 1992
Words:592
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