Cimber buyout could be good news for regional travellers

The SAS deal could lead to the reopening of some routes

SAS has agreed to purchase the Danish-owned airline Cimber, which announced in September it would close down by April 1 next year due to the termination of its leasing deal with its new owner.

The 20 million kroner deal will see Cimber's smaller planes cater to regional flights to Copenhagen like they currently do from Billund and Aarhus under the terms of the leasing deal.

However, it remains to be seen if the airline reintroduces the routes offered before its first stay-of-execution in 2012 (when it was bailed out by three former employees), which included services to Karup, Bornholm and Sønderborg. A rival, Norwegian, also offers flights from Karup as well as from Aalborg.

”With the purchase of Cimber, SAS will gain access to a specialist in regional flight with a very competitive production platform,” Rickard Gustafson, the CEO of SAS, said in a press release.

READ MORE: No fooling: Cimber's closing down on April 1 next year

Savings needed
The purchase comes just ten days before SAS's release of its annual financial results. Gustafson warned in September that a new savings round was on the horizon.

Earlier this month, national broadcaster DR unveiled SAS's plans for the establishment of a new subsidiary to cater to the airline's regional flights in Scandinavia. The purchase of Cimber does just that.

Additionally, because Cimber's wage agreement is cheaper than SAS's, the move is expected to save the under-pressure airline a pretty penny.