3 Mar 2013

Skywest airline upbeat on second half

1:58 pm on 3 March 2013

Virgin Australia takeover target Skywest predicts an improved financial performance in the second half due to new charter contracts with mining heavyweights BHP and Rio.

The contracts, signed in late 2012, led to a record 400 charter services being operated in January, compared with 328 services in the same month a year ago, AAP reports.

The boost to the airline's charter operations has given the Singapore-incorporated regional carrier a strong start to the second half after slumping to a $S2.2 million loss in the six months to December 31.

Skywest shareholders were due to vote on the proposed $A98 million takeover offer from Virgin Australia on 13 March.

Australia's competition regulator has already given the deal the green light and the Skywest board was recommending shareholders vote in favour of the Virgin bid.