Kansas City, MO—Vanguard Airlines, Inc. (the “Company” or “Vanguard”) (Nasdaq: VNGD) announced today that it has signed a Letter of Intent (“LOI”) to lease six Boeing 737-200 Advanced aircraft from US Airways Leasing & Sales. The Company expects to take delivery of four aircraft in the first quarter of 2000 and the remaining two in late 2000 and early 2001. Under the terms of the LOI, the Company will have purchase options on each of the aircraft.
Bill Garrett, Chief Financial Officer and Vice President of Finance for Vanguard Airlines, said, “The Company completed an analysis of its short-term fleet requirements and concluded that newer 737-200 Advanced aircraft were best suited for Vanguard to carry out its business strategy. We are excited about the signing of the LOI, as these aircraft significantly improve the commonality of our existing fleet while reducing its average age. In addition, we believe this aircraft transaction is in the best interest of our employees, passengers and stockholders and provides modest fleet growth for Vanguard in 2000. We believe fleet growth is a critical component to reducing our unit costs through economies of scale and a projected reduction in overall maintenance costs.”
Garrett added, “With these new aircraft, the Company will continue to use its assets to offer service in high density, high fare, short-haul markets. This LOI compliments the growth and fleet strategies and our goal of reaching 18 aircraft by the end of 2000. In addition, the Company is in negotiations to lease additional 737-200 Advanced aircraft that would be used as additional growth aircraft in 2000 and 2001.”
Vanguard, which began service in December 1994 and is headquartered in Kansas City, is a low-fare, passenger airline providing convenient, scheduled jet service. Vanguard serves the following ten cities: Atlanta, Buffalo/Niagara Falls, Chicago-Midway, Cincinnati, Dallas/Ft. Worth, Denver, Kansas City, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Myrtle Beach and Pittsburgh. The Company employs approximately 900 full-time equivalent employees and currently operates a fleet of thirteen Boeing 737-200’s. Vanguard reported its first-ever annual operating profit in 1998 and its sixth consecutive quarter of operating profits in the third quarter of 1999. For more information on Vanguard, please visit our web site at www.flyvanguard.com.
This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Such forward-looking statements are made based on management`s belief, as well as assumptions made by, and information currently available to, management pursuant to the “safe harbor” provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Further information on such risks and uncertainties that could affect the Company’s financial results are included in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 1998 and in subsequent filings filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.