June 17, 2013 / 7:00 PM / 6 years ago

All-business airline Odyssey to launch with Bombardier jets

PARIS (Reuters) - UK-based start-up carrier Odyssey Airlines confirmed on Monday that it was the customer behind a previously announced order for 10 Bombardier (BBDb.TO) CS100 aircraft.

The deal confirms plans that have been kept officially under wraps for some 18 months, but which were first reported by Reuters in late 2011. The airline’s name was not publicly disclosed until Monday at the Paris Airshow.

The deal for 10 CS100s, the smaller of the two variants of the CSeries passenger jet, was worth $628 million based on list prices, Bombardier said.

Odyssey plans to launch non-stop all-business class flights from London City airport to New York and other locations in Europe with the CS100, which it said would help open new markets.

“We are launching Odyssey Airlines with the CS100 aircraft because its transcontinental range will allow us to connect key city airports with stringent performance and environmental requirements both in Europe and further afield,” Adam Scott, the airline’s chief executive, said in a statement.

He said the carrier would focus on new destinations that could not currently be served from London City.

Bombardier has found it tough to secure orders for its CSeries aircraft, which can carry 100-149 passengers, and has won only 145 firm orders. The first flight of the aircraft is due to take place imminently.

Another airline said to have considered buying the CSeries is Qatar Airways.

“I am still interested in the CSeries but I want to see them fly at the end of the month and see how many orders they get,” Chief Executive Akbar Al Baker told reporters at the Paris Airshow.

Reporting by Siva Govindasamy; Additional reporting by Tim Hepher; Editing by James Regan

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