Mexican airline Interjet said it could consider taking over the operation of troubled carrier Mexicana, a bold move that would give it access to attractive international routes.
"We are evaluating it, but with precaution," said Miguel Aleman Velasco, head of Interjet's board of directors, when asked if Interjet was looking at Mexicana. "It is very complex."
He declined to provide details.
Several little-known companies have unsuccessfully tried to buy Mexicana, which stopped flying a year ago swamped by deep financial troubles. Some of Mexicana's biggest assets were international destinations.
But a lack of deep pockets has dented any serious attempts to bid for the near century-old airline, which is under creditor protection in Mexico and the United States.
Interjet pulled the plug on its planned initial public offering earlier this year due to uncertainty in the world economy. But it has aggressive expansion plans that call for more routes and a larger fleet.
The airline signed a USD$650 million contract in January with Superjet International for 15 aircraft to help expand operations. First deliveries are scheduled for the second half of 2012 and the contract includes options for five additional Superjet 100ss, which seat 98 passengers.
Aleman Velasco said Interjet's plan to sell a stake of the company to a foreign carrier -- a project his son Miguel Aleman Magnani disclosed to reporters in December 2010 -- was no longer an option.
As for any other funding options to support the company's growth, Aleman Velasco said his family was toying with the idea of creating a new airline company, but he did not share any details.