Forbes: Turkey's Pegasus Airlines may launch Ukrainian subsidiary
Turkey's Pegasus Airlines is considering setting up a subsidiary in Ukraine, according to Forbes.
Management have held talks with Ukraine's Infrastructure Ministry in Kyiv about the possible joint venture, which would be majority owned by Ukrainian investors and would fly under a Ukrainian operating license, Forbes reported.
Pegasus already runs one such joint venture, Air Manas, formerly branded Pegasus Asia, in the central Asian country of Kyrgyzstan.
Read alsoTurkey’s low-cost air carrier to enter Ukrainian market"Pegasus always is looking around nearby countries and just waiting for the opportunities," Emre Pekesen, the sales and network planning director at the low-cost carrier, told Martin Rivers, a Forbes contributor.
"Ukraine is really an under-served market. Only one carrier is very active, that's UIA [Ukraine International Airlines] … It's a huge country, the population is huge, and it's in the middle of [a region with] expanding GDPs. So it's an interesting country. We are just monitoring right now. It doesn't mean that we will definitely open a new base."
Pekesen said Ukraine is one of several countries on a "shortlist" being drawn up by management. He confirmed that a "mix" of domestic and international routes would be served if the project goes ahead.
However, he cautioned that other low-cost carriers have struggled to gain a foothold in Ukraine – an apparent reference to Ryanair, which abandoned plans to serve the country this year after a row with UIA and Kyiv's Boryspil Airport. He also said that Pegasus's investment in Air Manas had illustrated how "it's really very difficult to run a [foreign] company from Turkey."
Pegasus already flies to five points in Ukraine from Istanbul and Ankara. Another Turkish low-cost carrier, AtlasGlobal, operates a Ukrainian subsidiary under the brand AtlasGlobal Ukraine. But its network is smaller, linking just three cities to Istanbul, Forbes said.