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Another New Airline Adds Flight at CVG; Airport's Bond Rating Goes Up

OneJet is launching service from CVG Airport to Pittsburgh starting August 15 with one flight a day operating Monday through Friday. Flights will arrive to CVG mid-morning and depart to Pittsburgh in the afternoon. Tickets are scheduled to be available starting July 18. OneJet will become CVG’s ninth air carrier to operate with scheduled passenger service and Pittsburgh will become its 54th nonstop market.

“The Cincinnati - Pittsburgh market is a key route for our corporate clients, including PNC, as well as other business travelers from both regions,” said Matthew Maguire, chief executive officer, OneJet, in a statement. “We're pleased to offer an accessible and convenient nonstop solution to serve this market and look forward to working further with the Cincinnati community."

“We are very pleased OneJet has selected CVG as its next new airport operation,” said Candace McGraw, chief executive officer, Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport. “Pittsburgh is a very important business market to companies in the Tri-State region and we’re proud that we will once again be providing nonstop service between our two cities. We look forward to working with the OneJet team to make this service a success and also develop additional markets for potential OneJet expansion.”

OneJet is an air transportation network that focuses on providing passengers increased access to nonstop travel in small and mid-size markets using Hawker 400 light jet aircraft. Flights will operate from the main terminal at CVG and utilize gate facilities in concourse A. 

Airport's bond rating increased

Fitch Ratings has upgraded CVG’s revenue bonds rating to A+ from an A-, citing “the airport’s measurably improved financial profile on a go-forward basis under its new five-year hybrid compensatory airline use agreement” as the reason for the upgrade.

Fitch also pointed out as key rating drivers, CVG’s “continued stabilization of the airport’s origin and destination (O&D) traffic profile, at nearly 85 percent of 3.2 million total enplanements; large scale cargo services from DHL also diversify CVG’s aviation activity; and very low leverage as measured by both the airport traffic base and net cash flow, coupled with reduced debt service obligations.”

In March, Moody’s Investors Service also upgraded CVG’s bond rating to A2 from A3.

“We’ve been working hard to diversify our carrier base and revenue streams, and this bond rating upgrade as well as the rating upgrade we received earlier this year from Moody’s is a reflection of that hard work,” said Candace McGraw, chief executive officer, Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport.

“We’re proud that these rating agencies are taking notice of our solid financial profile, which is critical to the ongoing success of the airport,” said J. Michael Schlotman, Kenton County Airport Board Chairman; and chief financial officer and executive vice president, The Kroger Company.

Since 1972, CVG had operated under a full residual airline agreement, but transitioned to a new five-year hybrid airline agreement effective January 2016. According to the report, “Fitch expects debt service coverage ratios to drastically increase to above 3x starting in 2016 under the new airline use agreement, versus 1.25x in recent years.” 

-Staff report